Walker, Long lead North past South in Lezzer Lumber Classic
Written by: Billy Splain on Saturday, June 22nd, 2013
With just over one minute left in the first period Bald Eagle Area quarterback Cole Long dropped back and couldn’t believe his eyes. “Trey just ran a wheel rout and they blew the coverage so he was wide open. It was great to get one last touchdown pass here at BEA in front of my family and friends”. That play gave the North a 19-14 lead en route to a 49-27 win for the North. “It didn’t take me long to connect with my receivers this week, they’re all stars and run great routes” said the Waynesburg University bound player. Long was awarded a scholarship from the Pennsylvania Football Coaches Association following the game.
Trey Jordan started the game with a bang returning the opening kick 25 yards to set the North up at their 45 yard line. Then the Von Walker show began. The Central Mountain graduate hit Jordan for a 39 yard pass play then went 9 yards to finish the drive for the game’s first score. “Not bad for a running back playing behind center” said head coach Michael Keith of Moshannon Valley. “Von’s a great player and we tried to use him as much as we could.”
It began to look like the wheels would fall off the South’s cart early in the game as on their first series they were forced to punt, but the ball sailed through the endzone on the snap giving the North a safety and 9-0 lead. “Yeah we could have folded but I think we did a great job battling back there in the first half” said South head coach John Barton. But South defensive MVP Matt Barton of Hollidaysburg ran his team right back into the game. “I don’t think I ran that fast my whole senior season” he said of the 50 yard interception return for touchdown that helped earn him MVP honors. ” I saw ball, then I saw endzone. I bet you never saw a 300 pound lineman run that fast did ya?” said Barton laughing.
With the score 12-7 following a Phil Esposito field goal in favor of the North, South coach Barton leaned on QB Brian Urban of Hollidaysburg. “He played a great game tonight” Barton said of Urban’s efforts. “We just fell behind there in the third quarter and had to ask to much of him” said Barton of the game results. Urban led his team on a 13 play, 70 yard scoring drive with the help of Bellewood-Antis running back Hayden Degennaro. Degennaro had his senior season come to an abrupt end in the 2012 PIAA playoffs with an injury that prevented the hard hitting RB from playing in his team’s season ending loss. “It was scary for me at first but after a couple plays I was ok. It was just great to be able to play one more game in high school. I really didn’t think I’d be able to but it worked out for me” said Hayden.
The South would again go on another long drive, this one 13 plays for 66 yards capped by a 17 yard touchdown pass from Urban to fellow Hollidaysburg teammate Blake Davis to give the South a 21-19 lead. With less than 2 minutes remaining Glendale’s Damon Braniff gave the North the lead for good heading into halftime with a speedy 17 yard run.
Walker then took over but not without some help. The Penn State bound linebacker had two big pass plays in the second half that may have normally been incomplete, but a great off the ground snatch and run by Jared Baummer of Dubois and a defender that fell down as Dubois Garret Brown adjusted to a fluttering pass resulted in 50 and 55 yard touchdowns. “Hey, they count” said Walker of the throws. “Yeah, I just snatched that one right before it hit the ground” said Baummer of his catch that may have been incomplete on a regular grass turf. Walker closed out the scoring for the North on a 6 yard touchdown run giving him 4 scores on the night.
“We had a great week of practice and played really hard. It was just a great honor to be a part of this game tonight” said assistant coach Tim Jonocko of his team’s win. “It’s great to see these rival players all come together and play as one.”
“I had a blast, this was really fun.” North defensive MVP Dan Fry of State College
“All the kids played really hard tonight. I’m proud of them.” Bellewood Antis head coach John Hayes.
“Oh my gawd I’m not gonna be able to move tomorrow morning and I’m only 18!” Curwensville fullback Brad Coudriet
“Most fun I ever had playing football, Clearfield folks did a great job hosting us and made it an easy week.” Von Walker
Follow WesternPAFootball.com on Twitter @WPAFootball