HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Nanticoke Area Downs Tunkhannock
Once the rain stopped, and the skies cleared, Nanticoke Area won the battle at Memorial Stadium in Tunkhannock, 53-31. Nanticoke Area evened its season record at 1-1, while the Tigers fell to 0-2.
“Our team responded well, and we learned from our mistakes last week,” said Nanticoke Area head coach Ron Buza. “Tunkhannock battled all game, every time we scored, they responded. It was a good game on both sides of the ball.”
Tunkhannock scored on the opening drive of the game, beginning with a 13-yard kickoff return by Ryan Simmons, putting the Tigers on the 28-yard line.
On first down, Garett Hopkins hauled in a pass from quarterback Jack Chilson and went 52 yards on the play before being taken down by Darren Boseman. Zach Rodgers would bring the ball into the end zone, and Zach Ross’ extra point gave the Tigers the lead early in the first.
The Trojans took control with less than two minutes left in the quarter, when quarterback Colby Butczynski sent Boseman in for a score on an 80-yard pass.
Boseman took off as soon as he was hit with the ball. Ricky Klepadlo added the extra point to tie the game and end the first quarter.
Nanticoke Area controlled the tempo of the game, scoring three unanswered touchdowns in the second quarter.
A 3-yard run by Butczynski, with another good kick from Klepadlo at 11:47 put the Trojans up 14-7. They followed with a 75-yard pass to Dylan Szychowski at 2:10 and a failed two-point conversion, then a 64-yard run by Keanu Ammons at 5:53.
Tunkhannock showed signs of tiring, but a 57-yard kickoff return by Troy Simmons brought life to the sidelines and the stands.
Chilson hit Hopkins for a 12-yard score at 5:35 followed by a good kick from Rogers.
The ripple in the crowd would be short-lived, as a little over a minute later, Nanticoke Area would come back with its own touchdown, with another pass from Butczynski to Ammons, this one for 46-yards. Ammons broke two tackles the sideline before scoring.
Nanticoke and Tunkhannock each scored another touchdown, with Nanticoke going up 40-14 in at halftime.
Boseman continued to tear up the field for the Trojans, adding a 32-yard kickoff return to start the second half.
Butczynski threw a great pass and Ammons brought in the catch for a gain of 30-yards. Ultimately, Nanticoke Area would add six points on a 7-yard run by the quarterback early in the third.
The Tigers pushed on and made some good offensive reads, but it was the fumble recovery by Gavin D’Amato that lead to a first and ten situation on the 16.
At the eight minute mark, Garrett Hopkins put in a massive run to the end zone, up the middle, basically untouched. The Tigers would make the extra kick, and cut the deficit to 18.
Ammons continued to rack up the yardage, as he returned a Tiger kickoff for 43-yards before being knocked out of bounds by Jaxson Montross.
Tunkhannock’s defensive line got fired up when Nanticoke Area’s Joe Ammons was tackled by a host of Tigers, and didn’t gain enough yardage to secure the first down.
Joe Ammons put his name in the book with an 8-yard touchdown run with under two minutes left in the third, and a good point after kick put the Trojans ahead 53-28.
“We fought hard all four quarteres and never gave up,” said Tiger’s head coach Mike Marabell. “The team stayed positive, and we did things this week that were better than last week.”
“It is still a young season, but we are making steps in the right direction,” coach Marabell added.
Next week the Trojans will host Coughlin, while Tunkhannock heads to Pittston Area.