By BOB MILLER
Daily Herald Sports Editor
— On a rare Saturday game at Mill Hall, Bellwood-Antis spotted Bald Eagle Nittany a 10-point lead on September 28, 1996, before roaring back with two final-quarter TDs for a 20-10 win. The defense, led by Tim Noonan, Don Lingenfelter, Zack Fay, Brent Hescox and others shut down BEN’s passing attack completely, forcing them into an 0-for-nine game and picking off BEN quarterback Shawn Weaver twice. Weaver was approaching the 4,000-yard passing mark in his high career, and had thrown 54 straight passes in 1996 without an interception coming into the Bellwood-Antis game. The Blue Devils limited BEN to 68 yards total offense over the final two and one-half quarters.
— Fighting back from the early 10-0 deficit in a constant drizzle, that was accompanied by gale force winds, junior fullback Don Lingenfelter got the Blue Devils moving, rushing for 14 yards and a first down on two carries. Steve Conlon hit Matt Miller for the only reception by a “friendly” receiver (BEN had one pass interception and Bellwood-Antis had two), for 47 yards to cap a seven-play, 65-yard drive. Noonan booted the PAT to slice the BEN advantage to 10-7.
— That would be all the scoring by either squad for the next two quarters. With the weather an enemy for both teams and B-A tailback Travis Garner out with an injury, B-A began to take over both sides of the line of scrimmage. The harder it rained, the better the Blue Devils played for head coach John Hayes. Lingenfelter, who led all B-A runners with 139 yards on 26 carries, bulled for gains of 15 on a fourth-and-six, twice for a dozen yards and then three times for 11 yards and a first-and-goal at the BEN-5. Matt Miller had his number called for the five-yard TD and Noonan’s PAT kick put the Blue Devils in front to stay 14-10.
— Zack Fay recorded a quarterback sack and a BEN punt into the wind, was blown back for a minus two yards to give B-A the ball at the Panthers-34. Lingenfelter took just two plays to score, bulling up the middle for 28 yards, then following with a six-yard TD blast.
— On September 28, 1984, Bellwood-Antis used big plays and a potent defense to perfection to crunch Mount Union 36-6 for head coach John Hayes. Constant pressure from Bill Burch’s four quarterback sacks and the usual fine efforts from Bob Noye, Art Partner, Chuck Erickson and the rest of the B-A defensive unit shut the Trojan offense out, the only Mount Union score coming on a 32-yard return of a fumble.
— In the first meeting between the two schools since 1969, the fans barely had time to get settled in their seats before B-A sophomore Jack Dorminy grabbed the kickoff at his own 25, weaved his way through the right side and gone for a 75-yard TD. Mount Union failed to cover the “muddle-huddle” on the PAT attempt, so Blue Devil center Chris Ryan picked up the ball and tossed it to Adam Claar, who practically walked into the end zone without a hand laid on him for the 2-pt. PAT and an 8-0 score.
— A bad snap from center on a Mount Union punt attempt gave the ball to Bellwood-Antis at the MU-19. Donnie “Booker” Moore picked up 17 yards on three tries, but B-A lost the handle on the ball and the Trojans recovered. The B-A defense held Mount Union without a first down again and this time the offense got it done. Quarterback Paul Caracciolo tossed a 29-yard scoring bomb to tight end Steve Miller, who also added the PAT kick. When Mount Union scored on the fumble recovery, Bellwood-Antis came right back with another big play. Claar took a hand-off from Caracciolo and motored 60 yards for a touchdown. Miller’s PAT kick gave the Blue Devils a 22-6 lead and the B-A wasnÕt done yet.
— A Rick Kensinger pass interception gave the Blue Devils the ball inside the MU-40. Carracciolo immediately found Kensinger for a 37-yard TD pass and Miller kicked the extra point.
— On the opening possession of the third quarter for Bellwood-Antis, Moore sliced through the Trojan defense for a 74-yard scoring blast and another placement by Miller set the final score at 36-6. Moore finished with 101 yards on nine carries and Claar added a 87 yards on only four carries.
— Bellwood-Antis evened their record at 2-2 with a 32-6 thrashing of cross-county rival Williamsburg on September 28, 1962. The Blue Devils unleashed their potent ground game for 260 yards and rolled to their second straightwin after a pair of season opening losses. Junior fullback Bill Cherry had his number called 17 times for 117 yards and scored a total of 19 points in the victory.
— B-A lineman Chuck McCloskey recovered a Blue Pirate fumble at the BA-43 to set up the first Blue Devil score. Four plays later, Cherry went straight up the middle 40 yards for Bellwood-Antis’ first touchdown. Walter Rhoades, who chipped in 14 carries for 84 yards, added the PAT kick for a quick 7-0 start.
— Near the end of the first quarter, Bud Colyer capped an eight-play drive with a five-yard TD plunge and a 13-0 lead. B-A then pushed across a TD in each of the last three quarters. In the second stanza, it was Cherry smashing over for a one-yard score and also rushing for the PAT.
— Rhoades scampered 41 yards for a third-quarter score. Then in the fourth quarter, after Williamsburg put their lone tally on the board, Cherry bulled six yards for his third TD of the day for head coach Chet Dillen.