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Gators fall to Archbishop Wood in 5A Title game

Written by: on Saturday, December 9th, 2017

 

The 2017 PIAA Class 5A Champion Archbishop Wood Vikings


Nasir Peoples had a night. He ran for 266 yards and 4 TDs to lead the Vikings to a 49-14 win over Gateway at Hersheypark Stadium. The Vikings have now won 3 of their last 4 trips to Hershey.

Starting off fast, Peoples first two carries went for 30 yards to the Gator but on this drive, it was Adrian Lambert that would get the score, a 19 yard run to put the Vikings up 7-0 with only 3 minutes off the clock. The Viking defense swarmed Brady Walker on their second series forcing a punt. It was here Peoples found another gear. Taking the hand off from quarterback Jack Colyar, Peoples slipped through the line and sprinted 68 yards to put the Vikings up 14-0 with 7:10 left in the first quarter.

 

Peoples 68 yard td run


Facing a fourth and three, Gateway Head Coach Don Holl needed to get his team some confidence so he sent out a fourth down play. Billy Shaeffer snuffed that notion sacking Walker to force the turnover on downs. Peoples again found big creases and finished this drive on a 2 yard run making it 21-0 with 4:22 left in the first quarter. The senior back had over 100 yards and 2 tds in the first quarter alone.

Gateway got it’s first 1st down of the game on a catch by Courtney Jackson at the 50, but once again the Viking defense swarmed and flew to the ball. Florida commit Kyle Pitts was a terror all night and destroyed a quick misdirection pass for a loss. Pitts then blew up a 4th and 4 play to give the Vikings the ball yet again.

Peoples stayed hot, running twice for 14 yards, the second ending with his third score of the night.

 

Peoples 14 yard run made it 28-0 to start the second quarter.


Pitts then made his presence known on the offensive side of the ball, being on the receiving end of a 6 yard td pass to make it 35-0. Excuse the broken record here, but it was Pitts again making a big play, intercepting Walker. Adrian Lambert made it 42-0, a score that is a state championship game record first half lead. It also tied the most points scored in a half by Southern Columbia in 2006.

 Lambert 2nd td of the night


Peoples got his fourth TD on the first drive of the second half to close out the scoring for the Vikings. Gateway managed two long scoring throws, a 69 yard pass to Travis Thompson, and another Walker/Thompson connection for 80 yards to complete the scoring for the game.

 

Thompson 80 yard td catch.


Adrian Lambert ran for 97 yards and 2 tds on 10 carries.

Pitts had 2 interceptions for the Vikings, Shaeffer had 2 sacks.

For Gateway, Brady Walker threw for 257 yards and 2 scores with 2 interceptions.


Quoteworthy:

Wood Head Coach Steve Devlin

About Nasir Peoples: He’s awesome. Plays both ways. Had some big shoes to step in to. Love the kid to death.

Our offensive line did a great job. It’s team football. That’s our mentality.

3 out of 4 it’s just great. Every year is exciting. When you see kids as happy and excited as they are right now and knowing the sacrifice that they put into it if it means that much to them it means that much to me.

Nasir Peoples:

It was just great blocking by my line. 

It feels great to get another title. We worked hard all yard. I’m sure they did too. Hats off to them

My brother texted me and said “keep the legacy going” 

Kyle Pitts:

This is just unbelievable. I’m so honored to win this game with my teammates. I’m so happy to go out on a high note.

Travis Thompson:

I just did what I could do on those two touchdown passes. Watch the ball, catch it then run.

They had, the pressure was just overwhelming for our line. We had guys open but were only getting like two seconds for our quarterback.

Honestly, it still feels good. We made history for Gateway football just by being here.

Gateway Coach Roy Hall:

I told some guys earlier wasn’t losing a lopsided game. The hardest part was after carrying the seniors of the field after practice on Thursday for 5 or 6 weeks we knew that this was really the last time we’d be practicing together.

I couldn’t be prouder of these guys, I appreciate what they did every day. Even the teams that didn’t get here they worked hard every day so I just have a lot of respect for football guys and our guys.

I don’t think we got our feet under us to start the game. We didn’t help ourselves at all today.

I think they’re going to remember and enjoy this experience a great deal.

Courtney Jackson:

You don’t want to go out like that ever but we’re going to forget about it. 

We’re going to look back on this and like we’re the first Gateway to go to state’s. We’ll go in the off season and work hard for next year.

They were just more prepared to play. We came out slow

Brady Walker:

It’s a tough loss. I gotta give credit to Archbishop Wood. They’re a great team. 

We just started slow. That is the most pressure I’ve seen all year. 

Their #3 he’s tall, tough, swatted a couple of my passes and picked me off a couple times.

Just scoring one time in the Championship game was awesome.

I’ll look back at this game in thirty years with my kids and get to say we were the best Gateway had.

 

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