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Hempfield vs Northeastern

By Collin Richardson

Hempfield springs out to win against Northeastern

Junior southpaw Logan Harelson worked through a leadoff base hit and a walk in the top of the 1st before Hempfield batted around in the home 1st, jumping out to a 6-0 lead. It was one they would not give up, or ever get close to.

In that home 1st, the inning was a preview of what we will hopefully be seeing more of this spring. Stephen Katch drove in Peter Fiore with a bullet single back up the middle, and he also stole home later in the inning. Sophomore Brody Gebhard also had a 2-out 2 RBI single to plate fellow sophomore Brayden Hostetter and Michael Rieker (running for Harelson).

Hempfield led off the bottom of the 2nd with 3 consecutive hits thanks to Pete Fiore, Josh Toole, and Stephen Katch. All 3 of them scored for Hempfield in the frame, as they climbed to a 9-0 lead after Katch came around to score on Aiden Rodenberger’s 2 out RBI base hit to center.

The Bobcats of Northeastern scored their only 2 runs in the 3rd inning thanks to a few Hempfield defensive miscues. Quinn Shindler led off the 3rd with a base hit and scored on Hempfield’s error at 1st base. Brinden Floyd walked and later scored on Connor Rippo’s 6-3 groundout.

Hempfield added one more in the 4th inning when Josh Toole led off the inning with a double, and Rodenberger drove Ryan Jackson (running for Toole) in with a 2 out flare to right center for his 2nd RBI of the day.

Logan Harelson pitched with ease throughout the game, striking out at least one batter in every inning except the 3rd. He threw 6 complete, striking out 9 total, and walking 3. He pitched better as the game went on, taking down 9 of the last 10 batters he faced before yielding to cousin (yes, cousin) Hunter Williams, who allowed one 2-out walk in his line of work before striking out Owen Wilhide to end the contest.

With the win, Hempfield moves to 1-0 on the season and will play at Governor Mifflin Saturday at noon, a rematch of last year’s District 3 6A playoff game which Governor Mifflin won 12-2.  

Millersville vs Mansfield

By Stephin McCloskey

The Millersville Marauders took on the Mansfield Mounties Sunday afternoon in a matinee double header. Game one was all Millersville as Sam Morris drove in two and counted as a run in a 3-1 victory.

Ben Wilchacky took the mound for the Marauders and had a fairly dominant outing, throwing a no hitter until the sixth inning, and a shutout until he was relieved late in the seventh. Austin Lewis also threw a good outing for Mansfield but couldn't get the win against the hot bats of Villes offense.

It was a quiet game until the sixth inning when Jimmy Losh got the bats going for Millersville. Tyler Wright followed suit and got a single of his own. Morris came up to the plate and hit a two RBI double to put Millersville out in front late. Matthew Williams drove Morris in off of a sacrifice, which increased the Marauders lead to 3-0 going into the final inning of the first game of the day.

In the first half of the seventh inning Mansfield finally got their bats going, but it was too little too late. Kris Pirozzi relieved Wilchacky and struck out the one and only batter he faced. This finished off the first game, and the second came 25 minutes later.

Notables for Game 1:

Jimmy Losh - 1 SB, 2B, R

Sam Morris - 2B, 2 RBI, R

Ben Wilchacky - 4K, 1ER, 1H

The second game of the afternoon is where the bats really came alive for Millersville. Morris continued to bat well and went 2/4 in the second game, bringing his total to 4/8 on the day. He accounted for 2 RBIs, 2 runs, and a stolen base in his plate appearances. Losh continued his dominance as well, hitting for a double and triple, bringing him to 3/7 over both games. Keegan Soltis added his name to the bunch going 3 for 4 game number two. Soltis accounted for one run, had two RBIs, and a stolen base in his second appearance.

Mansfield struggled on the mound, going through five pitchers in the second game, and seven total. Walks gave Millersville 6 base runners in game two, which is a recipe for disaster going against the deep Marauder line up. The Marauders improved to 18-4 and look to continue their dominance against Kutztown.  

The Joe Philo Alumni Classic

By Jeremiah Miller

The 2nd Annual Joe Philo Alumni Classic, formerly known as the Alumni Basketball Games, will be held in the J.P. McCaskey High School Gymnasium on April 14.

In 2019, the McCaskey Alumni Association decided to rename its annual Alumni Basketball Games for Joseph W. Philo, an SDOL parent. Covid-19 necessitated the 1st annual Philo Classic’s cancellation in 2020 and in 2021, but the event was finally held in April of last year.

“I can’t believe we’re already here for year two,” said Josh Philo ’01, one of Joe’s three children. “Dad was the super-est super fan (of the Alumni Basketball Games) and I’m sure he’s getting a kick out of the whole thing.”

Joe’s daughter Jenna Philo ’04, one of McCaskey’s thousand-point scorers, has regularly played in the women’s game during the Alumni Basketball Games, now renamed for her dad, which also includes a men’s game and both former and current McCaskey basketball standouts participating. Joe never missed attending this event to watch his daughter take to the McCaskey court once more.

Jenna expressed the approval of Joe’s three children — herself, Josh, and Dan Baver of Pottstown — when the Alumni Association announced the renaming in 2019.

“We all support the decision one hundred percent,” Jenna said. “We are extremely humbled and thankful.”

Born in Trenton, N.J., Joe Philo worked for 40 years as an expert technician for Stadel Volvo and was a die-hard fan of the INDY 500 and car racing. He was also an enthusiastic supporter of youth athletics in Lancaster, serving for many years on the board of the Lancaster County Midget Baseball Association. Most of all he was a passionate supporter of his children.

Joe’s wife of 25 years, Nancy Philo, who passed away in 2005 at age 51, was a regular volunteer at McCaskey basketball games–yet another reason this event has deep meaning for the children.

“Last year’s game was bittersweet,” Josh recalls. “It was fantastic seeing all the players with my dad’s name on their shirts and playing together one more time. I kept thinking about the great times we had in the gym — Jenna playing, Mom and Dad running the concession stand and myself announcing. It was truly a family affair.”

The Joe Philo Alumni Classic will begin on April 14 at 6 PM. Doors open at 5:30 PM. All tickets are sold at the door and cost $3 for students and $5 for general admission. Children under 5 are admitted for free. 

The LL Berks League Has More Sleepers Than You Think

By Carl Frederick

When you scan the state of High School Football in Pennsylvania you are more likely aware of the powerhouse schools in the WPIAL, Mid-Penn and Philadelphia Catholic league. What you may not know is that the newly formed LL Berks league has competed for both district and state titles, but consistently has had kids sent to major Division 1 programs. I profiled a few sleepers for the class of 2024 below. Keep any eye on all four of them this coming Fall.

Luke Shaffer LB Northern Lebanon - Not only did Shaffer set the school record in tackles (141) last season, he did so finish his junior campaign early due to injury. Think about that for a minute, Shaffer had already recorded over 140 tackles and 9 TFLS in only 8 games. I don’t care who you play for or against that number is impressive regardless. Shaffer is stout linebacker for a Vikings squad expected to complete this year in Section 5 of the LL Berks. He has already drawn interest from FBS powers such as Villanova, Lafayette and William & Mary and more schools are coming. A tough hard nosed linebacker who can cover the field sideline to sideline, he certainly has the ability to play at the FBS level.

Charlie Breidenstein OL Manheim Township - At 6’5 and 295 lbs. its hard to miss Breidenstein on the field. The Penn Manor transfer is coming into his own for the Blue Streaks and his 2023 campaign won’t disappoint. A big hulking tackle, Breidenstein is solid in his footwork and his reach is top notch. He is the type of offensive lineman that you don’t want to have you looked up as a defender cause chances are he will drive you to the ground. Major upside is there for this rising junior, I expect many colleges to start take notice very soon.

Jackson Landis QB Hempfield - While Hempfield did lose a number of starters defensively (10!) their signal caller returns for 2024. Landis led the Black Knights to their first section title in nearly 20 years in his first season as Hempfield’s starting quarterback. Tallying 24 total touchdowns Landis makes his squad go with his arm and legs. With the graduations of Grant Hoover and Stephen Katch, I expect Landis’s passing touchdowns to double this year. He throws an excellent deep ball and can step into the pocket to take a hit. His speed and size alone are in my opinion more than enough for several PSAC schools to come calling rather quickly.

Brycen Armold RB Manheim Central - In case you didn’t know all this guy did last year was lead the LL Berks league in rushing accumulating 2,242 yards rushing with 35 combined touchdowns. Watching him play in person I can attest that Armold hype train is for real. Watching him play he possess tremendous vision and the power in his legs is second to none. The All-state returnee who has already been clocked in at a 4.58 40, should start to draw interest from Division 2 and 3 schools soon.


CV vs Hempfield

By Collin Richardson

Hempfield suffers 1st loss since December in Semi-final loss to Cumberland Valley

For the last 2 months, Hempfield did not lose a basketball game, including finally closing out on a LL League title, something Coach Walck has been chasing for the last 3 years. The 3rd seeded Hempfield Black Knights went into Cumberland Valley Monday looking to add another win. It would have been their 18th in a row. JD Hunter and sophomore Nolan Buzalka had other plans for the host Cumberland Valley Eagles. Cumberland Valley ran away from Hempfield, and now plays in Thursday’s District 3 6A Championship against Reading.

Both offenses struggled in the 1st quarter. Hempfield started out 6-2, but found themselves trailing after the 1st quarter at only a 10-8 differential. JD Hunter led the run for the Eagles, including a 3-point play. After that 6-2 lead early in the game, the Knights never saw themselves in the lead again. The Cumberland Valley Eagles continued to use their tight zone defensive pressure to swarm to the ball and make Hempfield take tough shots. Cumberland Valley hit 3 triples in the 1st half, Hempfield none. Dylan Levis popped 2 of those triples for Coach David Vespignani and the Eagles, both in the 2nd quarter. For Hempfield, they shot 8 of 22 in the 1st half. Miguel Pena led the Knights with 9 at the break, and he knew he needed a quick run to start the 3rd. Cumberland Valley led 27-19 at the intermission, but Hempfield’s kickstart quickly got them back in the game.

Hempfield opened the 3rd on a 7-0 run to bring the score to a 27-26 score. After CV’s timeout, they built a lead of 36-28 after 3 periods of play. Miguel Pena and Kamyn Lawrence were the only two players to score for Hempfield in the quarter. It is also worth noting that Pena’s triple was the final points for the senior guard. CV believed locking Pena down was one of their main motives for tonight's game, and they did just that. He was trapped on many double teams, and could barely even look at the rim. That is a big piece of why Cumberland Valley came out victorious. In the 4th quarter, Cumberland Valley kept pace from the Knights thanks to their defense, where Hempfield struggled all night. Swiss-army-knife Nolan Buzalka scored 7 of the Eagles 10 points in the period, and CV finished off the Knights with a 46-35 final score. Hempfield had chances to cut it to as short as 4 in the 2nd half, but the shots just could not fall. Cumberland Valley will look to ride their momentum into their Championship bout with Reading Thursday. Hempfield will also play for 3rd place against Waynesboro Thursday, and the winner receives a home game in the PIAA State Playoffs.   

Mechanicsburg vs Manheim Central

By Stephen McCloskey

Centrals Dynamic Duo helps the Barons Route Mechanicsburg

Trey Grube and Aaron Enterline helped their squad to a dominant win over the Mechanicsburg Wildcats on Monday night.

The Barons started on hot, only missing one shot the entirety of the first quarter. Mechanicsburg struggled against Central's great zone defense and offensive off ball movement. It took the Mid Penn squad quite a while to find their stride, but even then, it wouldn't be enough. As usual Grube and Enterline lead the Barons offense, but freshman Chase Book was quite the surprise. In the first half he had nine points off of 3/3 shooting beyond the arc. Mechanicsburg had a difficult time shutting down Central's selfless basketball. On the other end Chance Yanoski was single handedly keeping Mechanicsburg in the game with 14 first half points.

Central went into the half with a huge lead on Mechanicsburg 41-24, and it would not get any better for the visiting team. They simply couldn't keep up on offense or defense. Nothing changed for the Barons as Enterline had a fantastic third quarter getting his scoring total up to 12, while Grube had his up to 14 going into the final period of the game. Yanoski was still leading the Wildcats, but there was nothing else he could do that late into the game. Mechanicsburg played the final quarter because they had to, not because they wanted to.

Grube and Enterline had a fantastic fourth quarter where they finished for a combined 41 points. Everyone on the Central squad contributed to get the dominating win on Mechanicsburg, 70-52. Manheim Central goes on to play Exeter at the Giant Center on Thursday at 4:15 PM.

Hempfield vs Central York

By Collin Richardson

Hempfield bends, but doesn’t break in quarterfinal win against Central York

For Hempfield this season, it has been a resurgence of winning. Winning when it matters most, that is. Last year, Hempfield made it to the League Finals, but lost to LS in a heartbreaker. The next week in districts, they were upset in a close game to a good Cedar Cliff squad in District playoffs. Disappointment started to mount on a winning season. This year, it feels different in the Buchanan Gym. This is a year of redemption. This is the final go around for 3 year starters like Miguel Pena and Michael Hester. A week after finally striking gold after their win over Manheim Central in the league finals, Hempfield kicked off their District Title battle against York-Adams Champion Central York Friday. 

Hempfield defended their homecourt, although it was not easy by any stretch. Looking up at a scoreboard that read Central York 48 and Hempfield 47 late, Hempfield couldn’t afford to lose this amazing playoff game, one where they saw themselves up by 13 at the games largest advantage. Hempfield’s defense in the 1st half was forcing Central York to shoot 3s, like in most games this year. Michael Hester has been a defensive lock all 3 years he has started for Coach Danny Walck. Tonight, he had the task of defending big man Greg Guidinger. He was held scoreless in the 1st half. “Coach trusted me to go out there and guard him.” Said Hester. “Usually my task is to guard their best player.” Hempfield took a 32-23 lead into the break. Hempfield knew that CY would not give in, and they had to keep their foot on the gas. For Hempfield’s 1st points of the 3rd, it was a 3 pointer by Pena. Miguel Pena has played all 4 years on Varsity, even in the covid-shortened year. He scored his 1st points against Lower Merion, the old high school of the late great Kobe Bryant. 

Tonight, he hit the three pointer, and that was his 1001st points of his high school career. He joins only 10 other players to score 1000 points at Hempfield High School. Central York was unfazed by the celebration, and cut the score to a 38-34 stake. Hempfield grew a lead to 6 at 46-40, but Central York clawed back into the game highlighted by an Ethan Dodson 2 handed jam to bring the Panthers to be only down 47-46 as the teams traveled to the final 8 minutes. Hempfield saw their lead salt away to 3 points, which felt like 30 in this high stakes playoff game. Guidinger scored all 4 for CY, before Hempfield fought back with four of their own to take a 51-50 lead. 

The gym exploded when Pena took the lead with the lay-in basket. As the teams traded buckets, Central York was looking to take the lead with 50 ticks left on the clock. The score was 58-57, and even a 2 would give the Panthers the lead. Ben Rill was fouled, and went 1 of 2 at the stripe. Tie game. On Hempfield’s ensuing possession, Michael Hester missed a layup. But fear not, as Chase Calabretta grabbed the offensive rebound and sent the ball through the basket for the lead, the final lead that Hempfield would not give up. After Ethan Dodson missed the 1st free throw on his attempt to tie the game, Central York called a timeout with 2.3 seconds left. They tried to grab the offensive board, but a lane violation cut out that chance. Ben Troyer then made 1 of 2 at the line, and Central York’s attempt to tie it fell harmlessly. Hempfield hung on, and defeated Central York in the quarterfinals. They will now play Cumberland Valley on Monday February 27th in the Semi-finals. 

Crimson Tide capture LL League gold, topple the Cedars 51-44

By Matthew Ober

Celebrate like crazy Columbia! The trophy is making its way back into the trophy case after the Crimson Tide beat previously unbeaten Lebanon 51-44 tonight in the LL League girls championship which was held at Manheim Township High School. Lebanon came into tonight rolling and sporting a spotless 24-0 record. They have been here before and were in search of the title that has eluded them for a long time. The Cedars, led by Kailah Correa, beat Pequea Valley and Lancaster Catholic to earn their way to the championship. Columbia, led by Brooke and Brie Droege, came into this matchup tonight with a 21-3 record. The Crimson Tide battled past Manheim Township and then shut down Manheim Central to get to this point.

Photo by Matthew Ober

Lebanon would throw the first punch in the contest as they would win the opening tip and find Liliana Harrison down low for a quick bucket and 2-0 lead. Columbia would respond right away however on a bucket by Brooke Droege. After that bucket the Cedars would go on a 6-0 run and force Columbia coach Karl Kreiser to burn a timeout to rally his troops. Brie Droege would start that rally by getting a bucket and therefore stopping the Lebanon run. Liliana Harrison would come up big though with 2 free throws, at this point Harrison had 6 points already. Columbia would punch right back on a big three pointer by Kailee Soto. The 3 pointer would make the score 10-7 Lebanon with 3:30 left on the clock. Atmosphere was nuts and both fan bases were into it and it looked like this would turn into a run and gun, trade baskets type game. Columbia would start to turn the tide in their favor by going on an 8-0 run to end the 1st quarter.

Brie Droege would make another huge shot as she splashed a 3 pointer in the beginning minutes of the 2nd quarter making the score 23-15 Crimson Tide. The 8-0 Columbia run would turn into a 16-0 and would finally be stopped when Liliana Harrison set up down low and hit another layup. Brooke Droege would come back with another 3 and that would really end up being the dagger. Kailah Correa would get big buckets and Liliana Harrison would keep the Cedars in it as they found themselves back within single digits only down 35-27 heading into halftime.

In the 3rd quarter the Cedars would get close enough to worry the Tide, but the Droege twins seemingly always had an answer. A somewhat slower paced and lower scoring quarter favored the Tide. They had gained a big enough lead that they could be more selective with their shots. A Liliana Harrison buzzer beater to end the 3rd quarter would see them down 43-37 heading to the final frame. The 4th quarter mirrored the 3rd quarter as the pace of play was slower and points were hard to come by. Down the stretch it came down to foul shots and who could be clutch from the line. Lebanon would have the score at 46-42 with 3:00 minutes left in the game courtesy of a Kailah Correa free throw. She would miss the second free throw and Columbia would take advantage. Brie Droege would ice the game with 2 free throws making the score 50-42 with 1:22 left in the game. The two teams would trade possessions until the final buzzer sounded. The score ended at 51-44 and the Columbia players celebrated at half court as their fans celebrated in the stands. The trophy was presented, and the net was cut signaling the end to a great tournament. Columbia would board the bus and head back to the top of the hill officially on top of the league.

The Crimson Tide were led by the Droege twins, Brie had a team high 20 points while her sister Brooke logged 14 points. Columbia will resume play next Friday as the 2 seed in Class 3A. They will look to use this momentum as a springboard as they head into the District tournament.

Lebanon would receive their silver medals and played a hard-fought game. Kailah Correa chipped in 15 points while her teammate Liliana Harrison had a team high 20 points. They will resume play in the District 3 Class 6A tournament next Thursday as the 3 seed.


By Stephin McCloskey

Manheim Central takes the lead late and punches their ticket!

The Manheim Central Barons (18-3) took on the Cedar Crest Falcons (14-7) on Wednesday night in a huge semi-final playoff matchup at the Robert W. Rill Gymnasium. Manheim Central was the favorite, but the Falcons came to fight!

The first quarter was all defense as both teams only scored 10 points. Aiden Schomp led all scorers with four points, and Chase Book and Zach Benner both had three points for the Barons. Manheim Central struggled going into the first time out but made some offensive adjustments to tie up the game going into the second quarter.

Trey Grube got out of his early game funk and scored eight of his ten in the second, while Schomp continued to carry the Falcon offense. The Barons struggled from the field shooting only 7/18, while the Falcons had the advantage shooting just under 50% going 11/23 in the first half. It seemed everyone on the Cedar Crest roster was contributing as they had seven different scorers.

The second half was just as tight as the first. Going into the first timeout of the half Cedar Crest had increased their lead to four, but that lead would not hold up for long. The game quickly turned into a back-and-forth bout between two hungry playoff teams. Grube and Enterline were keeping the Barons in the game. On the other end Schomp was still carrying the workload, but his cold streak and frustrations heavily affected the outcome of the game.

When the Falcons struggled the Barons took advantage, and they finally saw their first lead of the game with just 2:40 left to play in the matchup. From then on, the score would change three different times, but Manheim Central struck last with a clutch layup with just 10.2 seconds left on the clock. The Barons punched their ticket to the championship game on Friday night against Hempfield, after scraping away a 49-46 win against the Falcons.


Manheim Central

Trey Grube 16 points (5/14)

Aaron Enterline 11 points (4/4)

Chase Book 8 points (2/4)

Cedar Crest

Aiden Schomp 10 points (5/8)

Owen Chernich 9 points (4/7)



By Collin RIchardson

Hempfield punches ticket to LL Finals with win over Warwick

Miguel Pena and Michael Hester have both started for Coach Danny Walck since they were sophomores. Hester was more known for his defensive skills, Pena for his scoring production. Tonight, the Hempfield Black Knights defeated the Warwick Warriors in the Lancaster Lebanon League Semi-finals by a score of 49-43. Pena led all scorers with 20 points, including 3 3-pointers. Warwick was led by Trevor Evans and Caleb Johnson, who both had 11. Hempfield, who has lost the last 2 league titles by a total of 5 points, is looking to cap off the drought with a win Friday at Manheim Township. “This year means so much to us”. Added Pena. “It’s the last chance to get what we wanted since freshman year”.

Hempfield got things underway in the 1st with big man Kamyn Lawrence grabbed a bucket in the paint with 6:48 left. Speaking of the paint, Warwick’s rebounding in the paint was the story of the 1st, or Hempfield’s lack thereof. Many of Warwick’s points in the 1st came off 2nd opportunity shots, including Mason Burr’s putback and Trevor Evans’ trifecta. Michael Rieker’s buzzer beater corner trey gave the Knights an 11-9 lead after 8 minutes of play.

The 2nd quarter had a strong amount of Warwick firepower to it. The teams continued to play tight defense on one another, just like last year’s league semi-final, where Hempfield prevailed 52-48. Trevor Evans popped consecutive 3-pointers to give Warwick back the lead, a lead that would be flipped 5 more times in the remaining 5:22. Warwick then took a 23-20 lead into the locker room at the break. Hempfield was no stranger to being down at halftime. After all, The Warriors led the Knights 19-18 in last year semi-final. Phased? Not one bit. “The brotherhood (of this team) has always been good.” Stated by Pena again. “With that it brings trust in each other so when it gets tough, we don’t fall apart”.

To start the 3rd, the Knights opened the period on a 9-0 run to go up 29-23, their biggest lead of the game (on either side for that matter). Chase Calabretta had 4 in the frame for Hempfield. Warwick battled back thanks to 2 Thomas Jeanes triples and at the end of 3 the score was only a 37-36 Hempfield lead. Pena hit his 2nd trey of the night at the buzzer to take the lead in the closing seconds of the 3rd.

Warwick was looking for revenge for the 2 times that Hempfield beat them last year. Coach Christensen and company were ready to right the ship this time around. Hempfield would have none of it in the 4th. Although it was still relatively close throughout the 4th, Warwick was held to 1 of 5 shooting in the 4th quarter. Warwick took the lead early, but Hempfield took it back with 6:57 left and never gave the lead back. The Warriors committed 3 turnovers in the final 4 minutes. Warwick did cut the lead to 2 at a 45-43 stake with 1:33 left in the game. They did not score the rest of the game, and Hempfield capitalized. Chase Calabretta knocked down 4 free throws and Hempfield closed out the game with a score of 49-43. They will now play either Cedar Crest or Manheim Central on Friday in the finals of the Lancaster Lebanon League playoffs at Manheim Township at 7 pm.       


By Collin RIchardson

Hempfield battles with the Blazers, punches ticket to LL League semifinal berth

Hempfield and Lancaster Mennonite tipped off in quarterfinal play in Landisville on Monday. Mennonite was coming into this one playing hot, their last game was a dominant win over rival Columbia 73-46. Hempfield, the winners of 13 straight, were looking to get the 1st win on their #revengetour. The game started with two quick hoop and harm conversions by Michael Hester and Miguel Pena for Hempfield. Savier Sumrall then popped a trifecta for his first points. Turnovers were an issue for both sides in the 1st and throughout the game. 

Big man Kamyn Lawrence put the post moves on Mennonite’s zone defense, and Coach Seth Buckwalter called a timeout with 2:11 left. Out of the timeout, the only points scored between the two squads was a Camden Hurst 3-pointer. As we headed into the 2nd, the score was Hempfield 11, and Mennonite 8.

The story of the 2nd quarter was the runs that both teams went on. Hempfield went up as much as 21-10, but Mennonite clawed back to bring it to 21-17 at one point. Hempfield’s first run was thanks in large part to Lawrence’s 7 points including another And-1 conversion and Ben Troyer’s layup. Lancaster’s response run was more spread out, where 4 players contributed to the cut into the lead. Camden Hurst capped the run with a fast break And-1, and his team was only down 4. Hempfield was starting to feel the pressure of the upset that was brewing on their hands. Miguel Pena has been in this position before. Tonight, he would have none of what Mennonite was serving up. He took his team to close the period on an 11-2 run when the halftime horn sounded. He had 12 points in just the 2nd, including back-to-back trifectas midway through. Hempfield led at the break by a score of 32-19.

In the 3rd, the Blazers came out with more energy than Hempfield did. All-State selection Camden Hurst specifically. He scored the 1st 6 points for LM in the frame and chiseled the lead to 9 at a 34-25 stake. Still tons of time left for the Mennonite squad. After the timeout with 5:34 left in the 3rd, Hempfield and Mennonite both found scoring opportunities, and Hempfield preserved a 10-point advantage as the 3rd wrapped up. Camden Hurst continued to try and keep his team in the game. He scored 15 in just the 3rd, and that was 15 of Mennonite’s 19 points in the quarter. For Hempfield, every starter scored in the period. Pena had 6, Hester had a nice bucket in traffic, “Silent” Chase Calabretta had a mid-range J, Troyer scored 4, and Kamyn Lawrence grabbed another bucket.

When the 4th started, the Blazers continued to try and pull closer and closer. Sumrall popped his 2nd trey to light a fire under the Mennonite faithful. The score was a 50-43 Hempfield lead when Danny Walck called a timeout. There was a little over 5 minutes left, and Mennonite had the momentum. Tensions were running high. After all, it is the playoffs. Walck got his troops to focus up, and never let Mennonite pull any closer than 7 points the rest of the game. Hempfield continued to share the rock, and Ben Troyer had another electrifying steal and dunk for the Knights. Hempfield also went 9/13 from the charity stripe, and never looked back. They defeated Lancaster Mennonite by a score of 63-53, leaving any threats of an upset in the dust. Hempfield will play Warwick Wednesday at Conestoga Valley at 5:30. On the other side of the Final 4, Manheim Central will play Cedar Crest (estimated) at 7:30 pm. 717sports will have full coverage of both games, which both should be amazing. Stay tuned for updates and write ups on both games. 


By Matthew Ober

Warwick ends LS reign as league champion after a 52-50 win in thrilling fashion

Tonight, was the start of LL League playoffs and this quarterfinal matchup between defending champion Lampeter Strasburg and the visiting Warriors of Warwick did not disappoint. After some pregame warmups (that also had some good tunes) and the national anthem, teams got on the court and the ball was thrown up in the air. The first quarter would get off to a slow start as LS held a 5-2 lead for the majority of the quarter. Intensity picked up as the quarter went on and a Dean Herr three pointer before the buzzer would give LS a 13-7 lead heading into quarter number 2. 

Photo by Rachel Horst of Hosh Posh Photography

Like in the first quarter Herr would continue to hit big shots in the 2nd as he drilled a 3 pointer with about 6 minutes left on the clock to give the home team a 18-9 lead. Warwick however did not panic to being down by almost double digits. They would go on an 8-0 run capped by a Cody Ryan jumper making the score 18-17 LS with mere minutes left in the 2nd frame. The teams would trade a couple buckets and at the end of the half the score would be 21-20 in favor of the visiting Warriors. Dean Herr (finished with 9 points) and Justin Glick (finished with a team high 10 points) led the way for the Pioneers in the first half. Warwick in the first half was pretty balanced offensively but the standout was Thomas Jeanes who had multiple clutch moments in the first half.

Teams came out for the 3rd quarter and both teams were looking for a fast start, but it would be Warwick that gained momentum. Carter Horst (8 points) would set the tone right away by hitting a 3 and that would be the start of a 7-0 run to make it 28-20 Warriors with about 6 minutes left in the quarter. LS would battle back with a 5-0 run but then Warwick responded with another run to make it 33-25. Cue LS sophomore guard Chase Smucker (10 points) and crew, he would hit a jumper then drill a 3 pointer and at the end of 3 it would be Warwick only up 35-34.

First couple minutes of the 4th quarter would see some lead changes as Trent Wagner (9 points) would come off the bench for LS and hit a jumper giving his team a 36-35 lead. That lead lasted mere seconds as Warwick’s Thomas Jeanes (game high 16 points) would silence the crowd with a 3 ball to give the Warriors a 38-36 lead. LS however would go down and thanks to a 3 pointer by Justin Glick regain the lead 39-38 with about 5 minutes left in the game.

Caleb Johnsen (finished with 13 points) for Warwick started off slow scoring wise but the 4th quarter came, and it was his turn to clutch up and put the team on his back. Teams would go back and forth trading buckets, Caleb Johnsen made some clutch free throws down the stretch putting the away team up 52-50 under a minute left. LS would end up fouling Carter Horst and that sent him to the line. He would end up missing the front end of a 1 and 1 giving LS one last shot with 12 seconds left. A frantic sequence would ensue where Horst blocked a 3-point attempt by Herr and saved the ball from going out of bounds. Horst would throw the ball back in play and the ball landed in the hands of Smucker who made a move past a defender and towards the right side of the hoop. He would lay it up, but the ball would not fall as it rattled in and out, off the back of the rim. The ball fell to the ground and the buzzer sounded. Cue the celebration for the underdogs from Lititz. Warwick would hand LS its first home loss this season and the Warriors would book their ticket to the LL League Semifinals on Wednesday night against Hempfield.

I caught up with the winning coach after the game, Q and A is below!

Catching up with Coach Christensen:

Q: What do you have to say about the performances tonight of Caleb Johnsen and Thomas?

A: The leadership that Caleb brings every day is fantastic. The moment is never too big for him. He stepped up big for us in the 4th. Thomas gave us a big spark off the bench all game. We needed that performance tonight from him and he came through.

Q: What do you have to say about the team’s offensive performance in the second half?

A: We really did a much better job taking care of the ball and making the right play. That helped us defensively also being able to play defense in half court vs transition.

Q: What do you have to say about the team’s defensive performance overall?

A: Mason Burr and Carter Horst were fantastic on their guards all night. #4 and #5 for LS are really great shooters and Mason/Carter stayed home on them all night. Ya’Majesty, Trevor, and Thomas did a nice job rebounding as well.

Q: What was the message to the team coming into tonight knowing LS is the defending champion and they don’t lose much at home?

A: Give everything you can possibly give in your role, and we will be in a good spot at the end. Everyone gave everything they had on both ends of the floor.

Q: What does this win mean to you and the team as you look forward to Wednesday?

A: We never want to lose 2 games in a row ever. Tonight, was great for our young team moving forward. We are excited to be able to play Wednesday in a really cool environment.


by Stephin McCloskey

Ethan Benne and the Penn Manor Comets took on Sebastian Henson and the Manheim Township Blue Streaks in a Section One finale on Tuesday night.

The Blue Streaks entered the night with a 6-13-1 record on top of a 1-5 conference standing, while the Comets came in with a 8-10 record and a 1-6 conference standing.

It was senior night and the Comets said farewell to Zach Tawfik, Luis Frias, DeShawn Stanley, Dominick Guzman, and Nathan Schmidtke. 717 Sports wishes the best of luck to the Penn Manor graduating seniors.

All of the Penn Manor graduating seniors got starting spots to tip-off the night, and they played well together. Anyone would have noticed that they have played all four years together, because their chemistry was top notch even when things weren't going their way. Although Penn Manor was playing well Manheim’s shots couldn't miss.

After the first-time out Aidan Mattern and Ethan Benne took the court for the Comets to get things going, but Mattern struggled. At the end of the first quarter Manheim Township led 24-15 and Sebastian Henson and Bennett Parmer both had 8 for the Streaks. Dhamir Wesley led the Comets with four points of his own.

Sebastian Henson just could not miss from his favorite corner spot, and at the start of the second quarter he had already had 13 for Manheim Township. Ethan Benne also caught his stride for the Comets increasing his scoring total to 10 midway through the quarter.

At the end of the first half Township had a 44-31 lead. Henson and Benne both had 16, and it was more of a battle between those two than it was a game between the Comets and Blue Streak, which would change in the fourth quarter, where the Comets would come back from a 13-point deficit and win the game.

Benne and Henson both started off the third quarter scoring for their teams and the battle continued. Midway through the third quarter the Streaks had reached three double digit scores in Parmer, Henson, and Quinn Snyder. The Comets were being outplayed and more importantly out coached, which has happened a lot this year. Benne and Wesley were the two bright spots in a rough night for the home team.

Going into the final quarter Benne had 24 and Henson had 20. Township continued its dominance and led 59-46. The last few minutes of this game were the best minutes of basketball I have ever watched.

Things were getting chippy with about three minutes to play in the game. Both teams were giving each other hard fouls and playing physical defense. Sebastian Henson and Benne were matched up with 28 apiece, while Penn Manor still trailed, but only by six.

A huge Devin Figueroa three pointer brought the game within three and he hit another to tie the game. The atmosphere was electric on Senior night and Aidan Mattern then hit the go ahead shot with 1:47 left to play. From then on the lead changed three different times. Down one point with 1.8 seconds left to play Dhamir Wesley heaved the ball to Benne, who would then hit a hugely contested turnaround jump shot for the win.

It was an electric senior night for the Comets. Ethan Benne again showed why he is the best player on the court at any given time, and the Comets showed that their juniors and sophomores will be a huge problem next season. Manheim Township also looked promising, but their lack of veterans showed last night.


by Collin Richardson

LS pulls away from Octorara in massive Section 3 battle

Lampeter Strasburg and Octorara came into Friday night with the same record in Section 3 at 8-1. One team was going to win, and one was going to lose. The winner of this matchup would basically win Section 3. Safe to say this was a high stakes game.

In the 1st quarter, LS came out on the scoring attack. They built their lead to 5 at one point thanks to Luke Hines' quick 2 and Chase Smucker’s trey. The Braves then chopped away at the deficit and took the lead 8-7 thanks to the duo of Zachary Kirk and Jackson Leaman. LS would have none of it and picked back up what they started and carried out an 11-4 attack to close the quarter. The Pioneers were incredibly efficient on offense, shooting 9 of 13 in the period. Chase Smucker led the Pios with 8 as the 2nd quarter started. 23-12 Pioneer advantage, and the Octorara Braves needed a spark to get back into it.

Octorara started to chip away here and there but couldn’t get enough stops to get within the LS lead, which continued to produce in the 2nd quarter. Elijah Hamilton barreled home 2 treys in the frame, but foul trouble cut his minutes dramatically. It was a cold frame for Octorara, going 5/12. Nobody other than Elijah Hamilton had more than 3 points in the quarter for Octorara. For LS, their offensive rebounding was the highlight of the quarter. Luke Hines was grabbing boards on both sides of the floor. Although he did not take a single shot, his height was beneficial to Coach Berryman’s team and helped them preserve a 34-28 lead at half.

When the 3rd started, so did Octorara’s scoring blitz. Elijah Hamilton capped another 3 to pull Octorara ever closer. Zach Kirk continued to attack the paint, making 2 buckets. Octorara did pull even on the scoreboard at 35 apiece, but Luke Hines 2 free throws built back LS’s lead that was short lived. In the rest of the 3rd period, Octorara fouled, fouled, and fouled some more. They did not give up on the offensive threat though and led after the 3rd period’s expiration with a score of 48-44.

The teams started out the 4th quarter incredibly cold. Halfway through the period, the score was only 50-48 with Octorara still clinging to their slim lead. Octorara started 1 of 5, LS 1 of 6. Octorara couldn’t carry out their offensive plan with just over 3 minutes to go, and Coach Gene Lambert called a TO, still tied at 50. Elijah Hamilton got fouled, and he drained both, 52-50 advantage Braves. On the Pioneers offensive possession, they tried to cut in and around the hoop, but Octorara’s defense did not let them inside. Instead, Dean Herr stepped outside the 3-point line, and drilled home the 3 to give the Pios the lead, the final one that they would not give up. Octorara’s ensuing drive, their attempt under the bucket by Zach Kirk was no good, and Chase Smucker’s old school 3-point play put this one away. Lampeter Strasburg defeated Octorara, and Lampeter Strasburg needs to win 1 of their final 2 section 3 games and they will clinch the Section 3 crown.   


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield hosted Conestoga High School on Saturday, February 4th. The Conestoga Pioneers from Chester County came into the game 11-9. Hempfield, the winner of 11 straight, was looking to lock up another home win, who have now won 5 straight at home after falling to Wilson in the Hempfield Holiday Tournament, which was a little over a month ago.

To start the game, Hempfield started out flat. Conestoga took advantage, and jumped out to a 5-0 lead. In particular, Brian Shubert scored those 5 points, hitting a trey and a running floater. Hempfield then came back, and scored 9 unanswered points. Hempfield took the 9-5 advantage, and that was helped by 4 of the 5 starters for the Knights coming together to put the attack together. In the defense, Conestoga fought back to the adversity well, tying the game up at 9 off of Abe Dembele’s post moves and another Shubert layup. Conestoga produced late in the period, Hempfield did not score after the 3rd period. Hempfield has had trouble starting out cold in the 1st in a few recent games.

Hempfield continued their cold offensive approach in the 2nd. They did not score their first basket until under 6 minutes in the period. Conestoga shot 2/10 from the field in Q2. Safe to say it was not a surprise the score was only a measly 19-14 at the break. Hempfield did start to grab fire, at least more than the visiting Pioneers. Hempfield scored 10 in the frame, thanks to Michael Rieker’s corner 3, and big man Kamyn Lawrence’s 7 points. Hempfield’s percentage was double of what Conestoga’s was. Hempfield shot 4 of 10 in the quarter, and both teams looked to create better looks in the quarter.

When the 3rd kicked off, Conestoga got their wish. They tied the game up at 19, again off another 5 points by Fryberger. Hempfield then scored 4 points thanks to Chase Calabretta’s smooth J and Kamyn Lawrence’s nice find by Miguel Pena that left him a shot he couldn’t miss. Conestoga called a TO, with a 30-26 Hempfield advantage. After that timeout, the teams stayed neck-a-neck. Conestoga did not let Hempfield grow out of reach, only having a 3 point lead at a 37-34 stake. Michael Hester had a late hoop and harm opportunity to give the Knights some advantage.

The Pioneers came out of the 4th again well, scoring the 1st 4 points and took the 38-37 lead with just a minute exactly eliminated in the 4th. Hempfield called the timeout, and felt the momentum shifting. As the teams traded the scoring duties back and forth, Conestoga now clung to a 40-37 lead. Miguel Pena hit a 3 straight on to tie the game with 4:32 remaining. On the ensuing Pioneers drive, Big man Abe Dembele had an old school 3-point play, and things started to get scary quick for the Knights. Hempfield’s next points came at the hands of Michael Rieker, swishing a corner 3. This was the 2nd of 3 trifectas in a row the Black Knights scored. 

Brendan Styer then scored another fadeaway jumper in the paint, giving the Pioneers another lead in a back and forth game. Ben Troyer then shot (and drilled) the 3rd trey in a row for Hempfield off the backboard and right through the rim. Conestoga did not score and in saying that take the lead ever again. Ben Troyer scored another layup to put it away, and both Chase Calabretta and Michael Rieker hit one of two from the line, and Hempfield won the game 50-45. With the win, Hempfield is now 18-2, and has won a dozen straight games. Hempfield closes out their season Tuesday at home against Lebanon in both of the team’s final league games.         


by Collin Richardson and Matthew Ober

The LL hoops season is in full swing. Teams are playing well down the final stretch, some fighting for the final spots in the league (and district) playoffs that start February 13th. In the day and age of social media and livestreams, fans, friends, students, and families are starting to decrease in attendance at high school basketball games. “There are many more options of entertainment available now versus 20 years ago(not only in the increase of TV channels, but also Youtube, Instagram, kids glued to their phones)”. Said LNP Sportswriter John Walk. “Of the student sections at games these days, most lack energy and creativity that comes from watching college student sections on ESPN like Duke/UNC, etc”.

To bring this to light, it feels like human interaction at most LL games is starting to die off compared to some of the “golden years” of the 90’s in Lancaster County. A somewhat recent example of the “golden years” occurred back in the 2012-2013 basketball season when Donegal went on a magical run to the state semifinals. Throughout the season the energy and buzz started to be felt around the school. Students were getting to games early and created a very tough environment for any team that stepped foot in the gym. Yes, the winning ways of the team certainly helped, but it still felt different. I was a sophomore and had the honor of struggling to find a seat in the student section. The hype carried into leagues and all the way to the Semis against McCaskey. That game caught the attention of other LL basketball fans. 

Photo Credit Matt Ober

Donegal made another run to District Semis that year and it was a green/white takeover in the Giant Center. From there Donegal would end up beating 3 time defending state champs Neumann-Goretti (you can still watch the game on YouTube), that was a magical night and all the students and fans played a huge part in that. Dressing up for different themes and going nuts with my fellow classmates literally made my sophomore year. I’ll never forget that and it’s sad that what used to be something I looked forward to being a part of back then students nowadays don’t have that same passion.

Some student sections might be better than others, some might have none at all. That is some of the fun that basketball in particular creates, and sadly, some of it has gone away. If you ever get out to a Lampeter Strasburg basketball game, you will find out just how much of an impact a group of students, either 10 or 100 can shift the momentum of a game. Speaking of the atmosphere at Lampeter Strasburg, one of their current players, Sophomore Chase Smucker, even commented that LS students are the best in the LL League. The energy that is even created by parents and fans at a hoops game will build the confidence of the players.

For example, football players play for their friends in the student section. They want to help their team first and foremost, but also their fellow classmates. The students at football games give excitement to the players on the gridiron, they chant and cheer as much as they can. The happiness the players feel walking into class Monday morning is unmatched. That is another example of atmosphere, and how the excitement of the game can create joy, win or lose. For example, when Ephrata and Cocalico or Columbia and Lancaster Catholic square off, regardless of records, regardless of sport, you can guarantee these teams will want to win, no matter the cost. To add, Township and Hempfield played in boys hoops on 1/24. Both sections in Neffsville were about 8 rows deep, filled with the theme for their team that was set out earlier in the day. During the game, both sides were basically silent. In one of the rivalries as old as time, the teams didn’t have a single chant to shoot at one another, not even a “defense” chant for their own team. The rivalry was there. The energy? Nowhere to be found. Hempfield won the game, only by 6 by a score of 54-48, but the famed MT arena felt drained, even before the game started. How can we change this? What can we do to get people more involved in the game? Some simple things are we need to reach out, cheer as one with other fans of your team.

After all, it is called the student section, and not the student individual. The LL League always stands for “cheer for your team, not against the other”. Although it is amusing to poke fun at an airball chant or a turnover, the games build relationships between students, congratulating a teammate in your geometry class for their buzzer beater shot to win the game, things like that. When a team goes on a run to get back into a game, maybe even completing a comeback, that win feels so much better when you look behind your bench and see your parents, teammates, coaches, and fellow students rooting you on.

Cheering for your team will do wonders for the players. It builds them up, gives them a reason to wake up in the morning and a desire to do the best in the classroom, and on the hardwood. That is why we believe at 717Sports atmosphere needs to be more uplifting at both boys and girls Lancaster Lebanon League basketball games. 


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield survives late scare against Mccaskey, wins the Section 1 title for 3rd time in a row

Hempfield traveled to J.P Mccaskey High School on Tuesday with a chance to win the Section 1 title. They prevailed, thanks to Senior guard Miguel Pena’s 30 point, his highest of the season. The game started out looking like this might be a blowout. Kamyn Lawrence and Miguel Pena scored the first 7 points for the Knights, building a 7-2 lead. For Mccaskey, they started out very slow. They shot 1 of 5 from the field before Eric Centeno knocked in a layup to put them on the board. They went as low as 1 of 7 from the floor before the Red Tornado started to get red-hot. With exactly 2 minutes left in the period.

McCaskey came back from a 13-4 deficit, and finished on a 7-2 run, thanks to Eric Centeno’s 4 points and Markelle Caine’s trifecta. 15-11 Hempfield lead at the end of 1. When the 2nd quarter started, both teams kept pace. Hempfield continued to keep its 4 point lead thanks again to Pena and Lawrence who started out with all 9 for Hempfield in the 2nd. After a Johnathan Byrd midrange jumper, Hempfield called a TO with 4:07 left until the break. 

Out of the timeout, Hempfield went on a 6-0 run before it was Mccaskey that called a timeout. Miguel Pena and friends continued to dominate offensively, scoring at will. He scored 11 in the period. Speaking of the number 11, Hempfield shot 11/15 in the 2nd quarter. Kamyn Lawrence added 4, Chase Calabretta put in 2 buckets close to the hoop, and it built Hempfield’s lead to 40-25 at halftime. Eric Centeno led the Tornadoes with 4 in the frame, and it looked like this was just about over.

That was not the case as the 2nd half got underway. The teams kept toying around with the 15 point lead, back and forth and back and forth. One minute, it was down to as close as 11. The next, it was a Hempfield lead of 17. Chase Calabretta continued his impressive rebounding skills, giving his team a 2nd chance at baskets. Miguel Pena hit a 3 pointer to the delight of the Mccaskey student section and closed the period with 9, bringing his total to 25.

Mccaskey closed the period at a deficit of 14, 61-47 moving to the final period. Junior Kaiden Rusell scored 6 in the 3rd. Mccaskey continued to chip away at the lead. With a little over 5 minutes left in regulation, Mccaskey made it down to 8 thanks to Deshaun Mcfadden’s layup. In a little over a minute and a half, the Tornado cut it down to 3. The gym got louder with every bucket Mccaskey sent through the hoop.

Mccaskey called a timeout with 1:42 left in the game. Hempfield led, and was up 70-67. Deshaun Mcfadden scored a layup to bring them within 1. Hempfield had a very long offensive possession, and Ben Troyer hit an elbow jumper to regain Hempfield’s 3 point lead. Eric Centeno then popped in another 2 bringing him to 19, and the lead back to one. Hempfield was then fouled, and “silent” Chase Calabretta made both free throws, and Mccaskey’s final shot fell harmlessly past the rim. Hempfield hung on to win at Mccaskey 74-71.

With the win, Hempfield is now 16-2, and have won ELEVEN straight games. They also have now won Section 1 outright. Mccaskey will host Cedar Crest on 2/7, and the winner (pending Cedar Crest also beats MT) will go to the LL league playoffs as the 2nd seed in Section 1. Hempfield will play the runner up of Section 4, which looks like it will either be Columbia or Lancaster Mennonite on 2/13.  


by Stephin McCloskey

The Lancaster Country Day School Cougars took on the Annville - Cleona Dutchmen in a chippy sectional game last night.

Led by junior guard Toby Ashby, the Cougars improved to 8-5 after a 64-47 victory at home. The Dutchmen as a whole could not keep up with the physical full court press the Cougars were displaying. Elisha Shabach was the one thing the A.C. had that was effective. Going into the second quarter Shabach already had two threes and Ashby was playing well like usual.

The quarter was the same as the first, as both teams were fighting. Ashby saw his total points increase to 14 and Shabach saw his grow to 16. Nothing of true importance happened in the third, but the final quarter saw some technical fouls, shoves, and thrown clipboards. In the process of the madness, the Cougars put the final nail in the Dutchmen’s coffin.

Mick Cook and Gavin Keller had been going at it all night, playing physical defense against each other. On a free throw their arms got interlocked and Cook didn’t take that well. Shoves turned into coaches yelling at one another. Coach Jason Coletti received a tech and that was about the end of the night.

The 8-5 Cougars take on Schuylkill Valley tomorrow night at 6PM, while AC looks to rebound against Columbia on 1/31/2023.


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield takes season sweep over rival Manheim Township with gut-check win

Hempfield came into Neffsville Tuesday with an impressive 6-0 league record. They faced last year’s Section 1 co-champion Manheim Township, who was looking to stay afloat in the section race. The game started out very slow, the teams a combined 0-6 to start. Both teams scored their 1st point in the way of free throws, both big men Landon Kennel for MT and Kamyn Lawrence for Hempfield both going ½ from the charity stripe. Hempfield started out slowly with energy in the game, MT took a lead as large as 5 points at an 8-3 mark before Coach Walck called a timeout with 3:28 left. Out of that timeout, Miguel Pena kick started Hempfield back into the game with a corner 3. Hempfield took a lead into the 2nd quarter of 11-10 thanks to Lawrence’s offensive putback and Calabretta’s fast break layup.

In the 2nd quarter, the duo of height from Calabretta and Lawrence scored the 1st 4 points, leading to a timeout called by MT Coach Johns. MT kept right within striking range throughout the 2nd half, and throughout the game. Sebastian Henson popped a 3 to keep MT in it out of the TO, and they kept chipping away at the score in the 2nd. Quinn Snyder also barreled up a trey, sandwiched in between a Parmer bucket in the paint. For Hempfield, they played well in the quarter on both sides of the ball. They forced 3 MT turnovers, and scored 15 in the period. Miguel Pena scored 5, and Ben Troyer had a steal and a slam just before the buzzer to give Hempfield a 6 point lead at halftime, 26-20.

When the 3rd started, both teams started out well on offense. 

Hempfield started out a little bit better. They started the frame on a 7-4 difference, inching away from MT, but the Blue Streaks would have none of it. After Calabretta’s layup, MT called for a 30 second break. The teams kept going blow for blow with one another, but MT started to scratch in more. After Henson hit 2 of 3 from the charity stripe with no time left after getting fouled from 3pt land, the score was only a 6 point Hempfield lead at 37-31.

The teams carried the same score back and forth throughout the 4th. It got up to as high as 8 at one point, MT got it within 3 thanks to back to back triples by Henson, but Hempfield started getting hot just when MT was looking to take their first lead of the game. They built a 48-41 lead thanks to some sloppy ball handling and hard defensive pressure by Township, and Township never got close enough to make the game interesting. Ben Troyer had an INCREDIBLE athletic play to keep the ball inbounds and give Hempfield a Chase Calabretta corner 3 to strengthen that lead. Miguel Pena rocked 4 free throws and he finished up with 18 in total and a final score of 54-48. Hempfield defeats a struggling Manheim Township team. With the win, Hempfield moves to an astounding 15-2, and 7-0 in Section 1. MT moves to 5-13, and 2-5 in Section 1.Hempfield pulls away in the 4th from pesky CD East team in LL/Mid-Penn showdown.

Hempfield and Central Dauphin collided on Saturday in Manheim in the LL/Mid Penn challenge. Hempfield came out of the gate hot. Senior Miguel Pena scored the 1st 7 points for the Knights. For aCD, they started the game with 4 players combining for their 8 points, before they called a TO, with the scoreboard reading 10-8 Hempfield with 2:52 left in the 1st quarter. Out of the timeout, Hempfield went on a 7-0 run to end the quarter. Ben Troyer and Chase Calabretta combined for 5 including a Calabretta trey. Speaking of trey, Pena drained a buzzer beater trey to give his Knights a 17-8 lead as the teams traveled into the 2nd quarter. He finished with a booming 12 points in 1 period. Their lead was also created thanks to their always impressive defense. CD shot 3/12 in the 1st, and did not shoot a 3.

In the 2nd, swiss-army knife Michael Hester started to get his name in the scoring column. Early in the 2nd, he had a steal, and threw the 2-handed jam down with authority, breathing life into the Hempfield bench. Hempfield as a whole shot well in the 2nd, going 6/9 from the floor. Hempfield’s rebounding was again pivotal in holding their lead in this game. Chase Calabretta and Michael Hester tipped loose balls out to teammates to give their team 2nd chance looks. Hester and Calabretta combined for 12 in the 2nd quarter, which was the deficit at halftime for CD. 34-22 Hempfield lead. Leyton Fried had 5 in the period for the Rams, including a hoop and harm late in the frame.

As the 2nd half started, Hempfield came out hot, scoring almost at will. Although they may not have made the 1st shot, somebody was there to grab a board. Pena and Calabretta both hit a triple, Ben Troyer hit 2 elbow jumpers, and Kamyn Lawrence had a hoop and harm for his only 3 points of the game. At one point, the Black Knight lead was at 17, 47-30. Out of the CD timeout with 2:36 left, Central Dauphin started to go to work. They caught fire out of the timeout. Gregorious Arahoyas had 6, and Jelani Easter hit a 3 to slim the lead to 12 as we traveled into the final 8 minutes. 47-35 Hempfield lead.

In the 4th, CD scored the first 4 points of the quarter. Wayne Fletcher scored those 4 points for CD. Hempfield quickly called a timeout. Out of the timeout, Hempfield pulled away. Their defensive efforts were highlighted by a LOUD Ben Troyer block helped the fast break offense of the Knights pull away from a stingy Central Dauphin squad. Ben Troyer scored 6 in the 4th, including 4 clutch free throws to put it out of reach. Hempfield won with a final score of 59-48. With the win, they move to 14-2, and are 4th in D3 6A power rankings. They travel to Neffsville for a Section 1 battle with Manheim Township on Tuesday. 


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield pulls away in the 4th from pesky CD East team in LL/Mid-Penn showdown

Hempfield and Central Dauphin collided on Saturday in Manheim in the LL/Mid Penn challenge. Hempfield came out of the gate hot. Senior Miguel Pena scored the 1st 7 points for the Knights. For CD, they started the game with 4 players combining for their 8 points, before they called a TO, with the scoreboard reading 10-8 Hempfield with 2:52 left in the 1st quarter. Out of the timeout, Hempfield went on a 7-0 run to end the quarter. Ben Troyer and Chase Calabretta combined for 5 including a Calabretta trey. Speaking of trey, Pena drained a buzzer beater trey to give his Knights a 17-8 lead as the teams traveled into the 2nd quarter. He finished with a booming 12 points in 1 period. Their lead was also created thanks to their always impressive defense. CD shot 3/12 in the 1st, and did not shoot a 3.

In the 2nd, swiss-army knife Michael Hester started to get his name in the scoring column. Early in the 2nd, he had a steal, and threw the 2-handed jam down with authority, breathing life into the Hempfield bench. Hempfield as a whole shot well in the 2nd, going 6/9 from the floor. Hempfield’s rebounding was again pivotal in holding their lead in this game. Chase Calabretta and Michael Hester tipped loose balls out to teammates to give their team 2nd chance looks. Hester and Calabretta combined for 12 in the 2nd quarter, which was the deficit at halftime for CD. 34-22 Hempfield lead. Leyton Fried had 5 in the period for the Rams, including a hoop and harm late in the frame.

As the 2nd half started, Hempfield came out hot, scoring almost at will. Although they may not have made the 1st shot, somebody was there to grab a board. Pena and Calabretta both hit a triple, Ben Troyer hit 2 elbow jumpers, and Kamyn Lawrence had a hoop and harm for his only 3 points of the game. At one point, the Black Knight lead was at 17, 47-30. Out of the CD timeout with 2:36 left, Central Dauphin started to go to work. They caught fire out of the timeout. Gregorious Arahoyas had 6, and Jelani Easter hit a 3 to slim the lead to 12 as we traveled into the final 8 minutes. 47-35 Hempfield lead.

In the 4th, CD scored the first 4 points of the quarter. Wayne Fletcher scored those 4 points for CD. Hempfield quickly called a timeout. Out of the timeout, Hempfield pulled away. Their defensive efforts were highlighted by a LOUD Ben Troyer block helped the fast break offense of the Knights pull away from a stingy Central Dauphin squad. Ben Troyer scored 6 in the 4th, including 4 clutch free throws to put it out of reach. Hempfield won with a final score of 59-48. With the win, they move to 14-2, and are 4th in D3 6A power rankings. They travel to Neffsville for a Section 1 battle with Manheim Township on Tuesday. 


by Stephin McCloskey

With playoffs approaching the Penn Manor Comets have notched five wins in six tries after dominating the Solanco Golden Mules 57-37 on Tuesday night.

The Penn Manor Comets were without sophomore Aidan Mattern, but moved the ball around effectively with Deshawn Stanley taking over the point guard spot. Ethan Benne held most of the workload for Penn Manor after bouncing back from a rocky start where he turned the ball over and had four consecutive misses. He ended the first quarter with eight, and when he wasn't scoring Devin Figueroa was picking up the slack. On the other end the Golden Mules were led by Noah Baber, who had five of his team's 12 points.

Going into the second quarter the Comets led the Mules 19-12, and it didn't get any better for Solanco. The Mules shot 3/7 on the quarter and committed three turnovers. Baber had nine at half, but his defense could not slow down the Stanley and Benne duo, who had nine and 10 points respectively. At half time Penn Manor was still up 27-19.

After the half Penn Manor came out firing on all cylinders. By the end of the third quarter their offense had three double digit scorers in Benne, Stanley, and Figueroa. Noah Baber and the Solanco Golden Mules were kept quiet in the period only scoring seven points. As the game progressed more and more problems arose for them including a huge turnover issue. With the game all but wrapped up going into the fourth, the score stood at 41-26.

In the final period Penn Manors Larry Bellew gave some underclassmen and second team guys meaningful minutes as their lead became unsurmountable. With just over two minutes left in the game the Comets got their fourth double digit scorer in Dhamir Wesley, which capped off a great night at Shultz Transportation Gymnasium.

The Comets improved to 8-8 as the playoffs inch closer, while Solanco fell to 6-9. Penn Manor plays JP McCaskey Friday at home, where I’ll be once again hoping to see them keep their playoff hopes alive. Follow me @StephinMcC on Twitter for live updates of that game. 


by Stephin McCloskey

The Lancaster Country Day School Cougars cruised to a victory and improved to 7-4 in their section four matchup against the Pequea Valley Braves, who fell to 2-11, on Thursday evening.

Toby Ashby led the Cougars offense throughout the night and put up six points early in the first quarter, which helped his team jump out to a 12-8 lead going into the second. Pequea didn't get many shots up in the quarter due to some turnover woes, which would be the story of the night for the Braves. Joerick Irizarry had a team high 5 points for the away squad. Surprisingly the Braves defense held feature ball handler Jake Kumah to zero points midway through the second quarter.

Pequea Valley had four shot attempts in the second quarter, which is a result of them giving up a whopping 14 turnovers in the period alone, bringing their total to 17 at the half. Kumah finally got himself on the board for the Cougars after hitting a tough lay up. While Kumah was finding his rhythm Ashby continued to excel, which brought his point total to 13. Going into the half the Cougars led 32-13. Hugh Johnson and Irizarry led the Braves with five points each.

Nothing changed in the second half as Pequea continued to struggle with turnovers. Ashby continued his dominance, and some younger guys got some playing time for the Cougars. In the fourth quarter freshman Connor McCaster hit a three point shot while well defended, and the entire gymnasium erupted in, “He's a FRESHMAN” chants. McCasters three capped off an amazing night for the Cougars and ended a rather abysmal night for the Braves. Lancaster Country Day School took home the victory while beating Pequea 68-44. 


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield’s tough defense helps Ben Troyer’s 26-point night

Hempfield and McCaskey came into tonight as the only 2 remaining undefeated squads in Section 1. McCaskey, coming off a 21-point defeat in the “War of the Roses’ to Central York, was hungry to get back on the right side of things. Hempfield, coming off a 58-47 victory over York High, was looking to continue their winning ways, coming into this game on a 3-game winning streak.

The 1st quarter was highlighted by Hempfield’s defense. McCaskey was struggling to look at the hoop at times. McCaskey shot 3 for 12 in the 1st from the field, with a few shots being sent back by Michael Hester and Ben Troyer. The help defense of the Knights was swarming all quarter, a sign of what was to come. For Hempfield, Ben Troyer was doing it all. Blocking shots, making fast break layups, EVERYTHING. He had 7 points after just 8 minutes of play. He had a hoop and harm late in the 1st that helped carry momentum of his Knight teammates into the 2nd and continue their dominant ways.

Like stated before, Michael Hester is a great defender. It was not only his scrappy pickpocket defense but his 3-point shooting that kept this game out of reach. At the break, he had 9, all on 3 pointers. Troyer also doubled his point total at the break. At one point, Hempfield led the game 32-9. The Tornado did not go down without a fight. Jonathan Byrd for McCaskey had more than half of the points for McCaskey, scoring 14 points, going 8/8 from the charity stripe. Hempfield still led by 16 at half, 42-26.

The third started with a bang, and so did McCaskey’s offense. They went on a 14-7 run to pull themselves within single digits at 9 off of Johnathan Byrd’s mid-range jumper. Eric Centeno and Byrd had 6 in the frame, along with Elias Garcia and De’shaun McFadden both also dropping in treys. Miguel Pena had a quiet 1st half for Hempfield, going ⅛ from the field. He showed up exactly when the team needed him to, hitting a 3 and then hitting a nice midrange J to put out any fire McCaskey was starting to set up. 56-44 advantage Hempfield as the 3rd quarter buzzer sounded with Chase Calabretta hitting a 3 right before the horn.

In the 4th, Ben Troyer outscored McCaskey by himself, closing out this highly anticipated Section 1 bout. McCaskey quickly became ice cold, going 3/9 from the field, and ⅖ from the line. Every starter for Hempfield except Pena scored in the 4th, including Calabretta’s sweet stroke from outside for his only points of the period. Chase Calabretta played incredibly, finishing with 16 points on the night. Ben Troyer is my 717Player of the game, he finished with 26 points, and played great on both sides of the ball. With the win, Hempfield moves to 10-2, and 4-0 in Section 1. They are in the driver's seat to win the Section, and face a struggling Lebanon team on Thursday, 1/12. On the flip side, McCaskey has to travel up to Cornwall to face the Falcons of Cedar Crest on Thursday. Both teams are now 3-1 in Section, with the only loss being to, you guessed it, Hempfield. The LL League playoffs are starting to heat up, buckle up.     


by Matthew Ober

Donegal gets a 61-56 win in double overtime over rival Elizabethtown

Monday night in Daubert Gymnasium rival schools Elizabethtown and Donegal met on the hardwood. The JV game had ended in a close one and I tweeted whether it was a sign of things to come when varsity tipped off. Let’s just say I was definitely on the right track. Etown’s Caiden Zeager (20 points on the night) made his presence known early hitting a 3 pointer. The first quarter would be a slow start offensively for both teams as the score was 8-6 in favor of Da Bears.

Second quarter the intensity and pace picked up a little bit but that also created opportunities for lots of fouling. Etown would hold their lead heading into the locker room up 21-16. Third quarter the offenses for both teams shined, some big-time shots were made by Caiden Zeager on the outside and Brenden Lehman on the inside. Dutch Good and Evyan Patel, (who finished with 15 points), led the way for the Indians in the quarter. The score would be 36-31 heading to the final frame and the Bears were 8 minutes from pulling off the upset.

The final frame started, and Donegal would go on a little run to put the pressure on Etown, and it sure did. Shots that the Bears were making in the first half suddenly were not falling. Defensive boards by Noah Rohrer and James Turbedsky would help the transition offense for the Indians in the quarter. A layup by DeAndre White would tie the game at 42 with 19 seconds left in regulation. Etown would get off a desperation shot but it banked off the backboard and to overtime they would go. Etown would gain a 3-point advantage with 2 minutes left in the overtime period but foul shots for Donegal would tie the game back up at 48 with a minute left.

A Dutch Good mid-range jumper would put the Indians up 50-48 with 7 seconds left but that would prove to be too much time as a buzzer beater by Brenden Lehman (contributed 14 points) would send it to a second overtime period. After an intense back and forth quarter, Dutch Good, who had a 22-point performance, would come up clutch and give his Indians the lead for good courtesy of a layup with 35 seconds left. Foul shots for Donegal would seal the deal and they would get back on the bus to celebrate a 61-56 thrilling victory.

Player Thoughts and Reactions:

I talked to Donegal’s Noah Rohrer about the overall atmosphere and the game itself, he had this to say- “This win was crazy. I’ll be honest, Etown usually beats us in most sports so there was definitely some extra motivation coming into tonight’s game. We have a tough week with three games, so it was really important that we got off to a good start, though we definitely have to work on some things moving on. The atmosphere felt cinematic with both student sections going crazy with every momentum shift. Shoutout to Dutch, he really stepped up tonight facilitating the game and ultimately securing the win for us.”

I also caught up with the MVP of the game, per Donegal’s student section, and asked Dutch about his performance and what winning this game means to the team. He said “The game felt great, as I felt encouraged and excited to be apart of an amazing game, also with the game I had as well. The win felt nice, the rivalry between Donegal and Elizabethtown is always gonna be there, and it felt great to get the dub for our school in this sport you know.”

Up next: Donegal hosts undefeated Eastern York on Wednesday night and hosts section 3 foe Cocalico Friday night. Etown is at Red Land Wednesday night and at Conestoga Valley Friday night.


Donegal gets a 61-56 win in double overtime over rival Elizabethtown

Monday night in Daubert Gymnasium rival schools Elizabethtown and Donegal met on the hardwood. The JV game had ended in a close one and I tweeted whether it was a sign of things to come when varsity tipped off. Let’s just say I was definitely on the right track. Etown’s Caiden Zeager (20 points on the night) made his presence known early hitting a 3 pointer. The first quarter would be a slow start offensively for both teams as the score was 8-6 in favor of Da Bears.

Second quarter the intensity and pace picked up a little bit but that also created opportunities for lots of fouling. Etown would hold their lead heading into the locker room up 21-16. Third quarter the offenses for both teams shined, some big-time shots were made by Caiden Zeager on the outside and Brenden Lehman on the inside. Dutch Good and Evyan Patel, (who finished with 15 points), led the way for the Indians in the quarter. The score would be 36-31 heading to the final frame and the Bears were 8 minutes from pulling off the upset.

The final frame started, and Donegal would go on a little run to put the pressure on Etown, and it sure did. Shots that the Bears were making in the first half suddenly were not falling. Defensive boards by Noah Rohrer and James Turbedsky would help the transition offense for the Indians in the quarter. A layup by DeAndre White would tie the game at 42 with 19 seconds left in regulation. Etown would get off a desperation shot but it banked off the backboard and to overtime they would go. Etown would gain a 3-point advantage with 2 minutes left in the overtime period but foul shots for Donegal would tie the game back up at 48 with a minute left.

A Dutch Good mid-range jumper would put the Indians up 50-48 with 7 seconds left but that would prove to be too much time as a buzzer beater by Brenden Lehman (contributed 14 points) would send it to a second overtime period. After an intense back and forth quarter, Dutch Good, who had a 22-point performance, would come up clutch and give his Indians the lead for good courtesy of a layup with 35 seconds left. Foul shots for Donegal would seal the deal and they would get back on the bus to celebrate a 61-56 thrilling victory.

Player Thoughts and Reactions:

I talked to Donegal’s Noah Rohrer about the overall atmosphere and the game itself, he had this to say- “This win was crazy. I’ll be honest, Etown usually beats us in most sports so there was definitely some extra motivation coming into tonight’s game. We have a tough week with three games, so it was really important that we got off to a good start, though we definitely have to work on some things moving on. The atmosphere felt cinematic with both student sections going crazy with every momentum shift. Shoutout to Dutch, he really stepped up tonight facilitating the game and ultimately securing the win for us.”

I also caught up with the MVP of the game, per Donegal’s student section, and asked Dutch about his performance and what winning this game means to the team. He said “The game felt great, as I felt encouraged and excited to be apart of an amazing game, also with the game I had as well. The win felt nice, the rivalry between Donegal and Elizabethtown is always gonna be there, and it felt great to get the dub for our school in this sport you know.”

Up next: Donegal hosts undefeated Eastern York on Wednesday night and hosts section 3 foe Cocalico Friday night. Etown is at Red Land Wednesday night and at Conestoga Valley Friday night.


by Collin Richardson

Hempfield’s late offensive rebounding pulls them out of the trap game against Penn Manor

Penn Manor and Hempfield squared off Friday in Millersville. Hempfield was looking to avoid the trap and keep their undefeated Section 1 record by their side. Penn Manor, who was already 0-2 in the Section race, was hungry for their 1st Section win.

In the 1st, you could not tell who the 7-2 team and who the 4-7 team was. Penn Manor came out of the gate on FIRE building a lead to as big as 9-2 at one point, that made Hempfield call a timeout before this got too far out of reach midway through the 1st. Ethan Benne made 2 shots in the post, and Aidan Mattern also hit a 3 for Penn Manor. Hempfield’s timeout was used well, for they got themselves right back into the game. After airballing a 3 to the pleasure of the Penn Manor student section, Senior Forward Michael Hester put up 4 in the 1st, including a hoop and harm 3-point play. Aidan Mattern hit his 2nd 3 pointer as the buzzer sounded on the 1st 8 minutes, and PM led by 2, 12-10.

Penn Manor again came out in the 2nd half hot but couldn’t hold that lead. They led 19-12 at one point, but a 5-0 run by Miguel Pena and a sweet layup by Kamyn Lawrence shortened that lead quickly to 19-17. Ethan Benne continued his sweet post presence, scoring another 4 in the 2nd. As the horn sounded, this was a very low scoring game, only 23-22 advantage Penn Manor.

In the 3rd, Hempfield started to pull away, but the Black Knights were not totally out of the woods yet.. Hempfield’s defense is what started to impress, getting steals and scoring in the fast break. Ben Troyer started his scoring run, going on a 4-0 run by himself at one point, and propelling Hempfield up to 37-28 midway in the 3rd. Like stated before, this game was not over by any means. Manor found themselves down only by 6, 41-35.

Deshawn Stanley hit a 3 to start the scoring for the Comets in the 3rd and make it a 3-point game. Hempfield would have none of it. Although they may have missed the 1st shots of their offensive possessions, Hempfield’s boards on the offensive glass is what won them this game in the 4th. Chase Calabretta only scored 2, but his presence was widely felt, dishing out assists and using his presence to grab rebounds. He finished with 8. Junior 6th man Nick Deeg drained 2 free throws to just about ice it, and Hempfield steals a win on the road, defeating Penn Manor 48-40. One small stat that I found very interesting: Both the boys and girls games of Penn Manor/Hempfield ended with a final of 48-40. Also, both visiting teams won. (Penn Manor Girls, Hempfield Boys) With the win, Hempfield moves to 8-2. Their leading scorer was Michael Hester, who put together a great 12-point night. Penn Manor falls to 4-8, and 0-3 in Section play. Penn Manor’s leading scorer was Ethan Benne, who had 15.     


by Stephen McCloskey

Led by senior forward Luke Hines, the LS Pioneers went into LCHS and took home the win against the Catholic Pioneers.

Sophomore Chase Smucker got the ball rolling for the Pioneers with seven first quarter points, as he helped LS jump out to a 16-14 lead by the end of the first quarter. The Crusaders shot well from the field but struggled mightily with turnovers. Thaddeus Lee was the primary playmaker for the Crusaders who led his team in scoring with four points. In surprising fashion, the Crusaders defense held star forward Ben Wert to zero points through 1 quarter.

It was a different story in the second quarter, as Wert was back to his old self, dropping 11 in the 2nd, and scoring from everywhere. Luke Hines also caught fire scoring seven in the period bringing his total points to 13. Hines was doing everything for the Pioneers. He was dominant on the boards, got his teammates involved, and hit from beyond the arc. Lee was still leading the way for the Crusaders who saw their deficit grow to ten by half time.

Hines kept up his dominance after the half, while the Crusaders struggled to contain him. Their defense was primarily focused on Wert who was showing his frustrations after being shut down for another quarter. Thaddeus Lee was also frustrated with his team not adjusting the turnover issue at halftime, which was still prevalent. Going into the final period LS led Catholic 50-34.

Catholic made a push in the final quarter, but it wasn't enough for the continued Hines dominance and overall better gameplan executed by LS. The Pioneers took home the win, improved to 8-2, and Hines ended with 24 points.  


Position: Head Football Coach

Season: August – November

Report to: Athletic Director

Job Summary: Responsible for the direction and organization of the overall football program at Donegal High School.


*Previous successful varsity coaching experience and/or experience playing at college or university level preferred.

*Substantial knowledge of the technical aspects of the sport of football.

*Proven ability to organize, supervise and build a total sports program including the recruitment of a strong team of coaches at varsity, junior varsity and junior high level.

*A positive role model and motivator.

*Exhibit qualities of leadership, excellent communicator and organization ability.

*Applicant must have a time schedule compatible with that of the high school.

Instructions to Apply

To be considered for this position, apply online. CLICK HERE

Current employees interested in this position, must also apply online at the above link.

Columbia vs LCD

by Stephin McCloskey​

Columbia's turnover problem Tuesday night was quickly fixed on their way to a second half explosion led by Brelon Miller and the Crimson Tides physical defense.

The LCD Cougars limited their turnovers in the first half against a strong defense in Columbia. Jake Kumah kept the Cougars in the game from the first whistle to the final one. Kumah was all over the court on both offense and defense and led the Cougars in scoring (7 points) at the end of the first quarter. Despite his efforts his team went into the second with a two-point deficit.

The Cougars were not ready for the heavy defense the Crimson Tide were executing, which included a full court press almost the entire game. They also looked lost when it came to playing their own defense against Miller, who had six of his own going into the second.

Despite the Cougars offensive struggles, they were getting to the line and relying heavily on Kumah, which gave them a two-point lead going into the second half. It seems the tides had turned on the Crimson because they were struggling offensively as well. Miller still led, but the team could only muster nine points in the second quarter. Columbia had more shots made but was not getting to the line as much as the Cougars.

Cougars @ Half

FGA: 7/24

FT: 9/11

4 TO

Crimson Tide @ Half

FGA: 10/26

FT: 1/3

6 TO

The second half was a completely different story for the Tide, led behind a 13-point third quarter from Brelon Miller. They limited their turnovers, got to the free throw line, and started shooting efficiently from the three-point line. The Cougars had the symptoms Columbia had in the first half. They struggled with turnovers, could not get to the line, and had trouble making shots. This helped Columbia gain an eight-point lead going into the final period.

The fourth quarter was Kumah time. When the Cougars needed him, he produced, but playmaking errors and poor team shooting held back the Cougars from what would have been an amazing comeback win. Columbia's defense came in and saved the day against Kumah’s ten points and offensive showcase.

Columbia's win put them at 5-1 overall with a first place standing in LL section four, while LCDs loss drops them to 4-3 with a place at fourth in the current standings at section four. It will be exciting to see if Columbia can keep up their dominance when they play Manheim Central on 12-28-2022.  

Donegal vs Lampeter Strasburg

by Matthew Ober

Chase Smucker and Ben Wert score 20+ points in Lampeter Strasburg’s 63-58 win over Donegal

Game roundup - Pioneers came into Mount Joy Monday night and immediately set the tone by scoring 25 points right out of the gate in the first quarter. Second quarter started off with a Donegal run led by James Turbedsky. The Indians would get within single digits late in the quarter but LS would maintain a 37-27 lead into the halftime break.

Sawyer Floyd and Turbedsky would come out in the 3rd period and put the Indians squad on their backs. 2 free throws by James Turbedsky would knot the game up at 38 with 2:30 left in the quarter. They would take the lead for a short time but LS would quickly answer with a 3 ball. Chase Smucker would score 3 straight points to end the 3rd quarter putting the Pioneers up 46-39 heading to the final frame.

Donegal and LS would trade buckets in a fast paced 4th quarter. Donegal would get within one possession multiple times but couldn’t get the clutch bucket they needed. Speaking of clutch, Chase Smucker would hit the biggest shot of the night when he would splash a 3 pointer with 2 minutes left. The score would be 55-50 at the point and LS would hold on the rest of the way. The final would end up 63-58 and LS would head back to Lampeter with a key road win. I talked to Clutch Chase after the game and asked him a couple questions…

Postgame Q and A with LS Sophomore Guard Chase Smucker

Q: The offense started out hot scoring 25 points in the first quarter, what contributed to that?

A: The biggest thing is starting the game with energy, lately we’ve been a second half team and that needs to change to playing hard all 4 quarters. I think we did a good job of that and that energy gives people confidence to score.

Q: How would you describe the first half of the game?

A: Like I said we started off hot with lots of energy, but I think donegal played much tougher than us in the second quarter which brought them back in the game. Scoring is a large part but if you can’t get rebounds and play tough you won’t get opportunities to score.

Q: Second half was full of runs made by Donegal but seemed like every time that happened you guys came up with a clutch play. What do you have to say about the team’s ability to withstand those runs?

A: The biggest thing to stopping runs is to continue playing our game, getting intimidated is easy when teams go on runs like that especially on the road and that can’t happen. I think we did a good job of staying composed and getting the right shots.

Q: What would you say about your 20 point performance?

A: Confidence was key for me, after my first made three I knew I needed to keep shooting when I had opportunities. Last year as a freshmen I think I struggled with confidence but that helped me transition into being more of a scorer this year.

Q: What did Coach Berryman to you guys in the locker room after the close win?

A: Coach was proud of the teams effort throughout the whole game and the way we didn’t give up on

Chase Smucker and Ben Wert score 20+ points in Lampeter Strasburg’s 63-58 win over Donegal

those runs. Our big thing is that we can celebrate a good win for the night but the next day we need to be getting prepared for the upcoming game, so that’s what we are going to do.

Up next: Donegal travels to Ephrata on Wednesday night looking to knock off the undefeated Mounts and get back in the win column. LS looks to keep rolling as they face Muhlenberg in a non league matchup on Wednesday night

Penn Manor vs McCaskey

by Stephin McCloskey​

With Penn Manor's key playmaker, Aidan Mattern, sitting most of the first half due to foul trouble, JP McCaskey ran all over the Comets and dominantly took home the win.

Mattern only played three and a half minutes in the first quarter, which led to a huge turnover problem for Penn Manor early on. The Comets started off very slow with four misses and five turnovers in quick succession. McCaskey took advantage and went on an 11-0 run to start the game. By the end of the first quarter Luis Frias led the Comets in scoring with four of his team's five points. On the other side of the ball Eric Centeno led McCaskey with seven total points.

Turnovers were not the only problem for Penn Manor, as McCaskey was a more well-rounded team. They were more athletic, and the team's coaching staff was more well equipped for the night's match up. Going into the second quarter McCaskey had a 23-point lead over the Comets, with a score of 28-5.

The Red Tornados showed just how versatile they were through the remainder of the game. It seemed that every time they shot the ball it went in, regardless of defense or spot on the court. Penn Manors turnover woes continued into the second quarter and by half time they would have ten of them. McCaskey increased their lead by nine going into halftime. Devin Figueroa (6) and Elias Garcia (10) led their respective teams in scoring at half.

After half time it seemed like Penn Manor would have a chance to come back, as they started hitting shots and the return of Mattern didn't hurt either. McCaskey kept up their offensive dominance, but Penn Manor was not turning the ball over as much, as their feature ball handler returned to the game. Going into the final period McCaskey led Penn Manor 57-36. Mattern and Ethan Benne led Penn Manor in scoring at eight points apiece, while Garcia still led all McCaskey scorers.

The fourth quarter did not change much, as Penn Manor's turnover problem returned. McCaskey was still outplaying Penn Manor in almost every facet of the game and McCaskey would take home the win 72-50. Penn Manor hopes to bounce back after two bad losses in a row, and McCaskey will seek to continue their dominance.

Ephrata vs Penn Manor

by Stephin McCloskey

Dylan Kohl and Dylan Mahlandt helped the Ephrata Mountaineers run away with a huge lead in the second half against the Penn Manor Comets.

Ephrata put on a shooting display in the first quarter and jumped out to a ten point lead going into the first timeout of the game. Mahlandt put up the first points for the Pioneers with a deep three, which would be the story of the night for the Ephrata offense. Kohl would follow suit and hit three straight three pointers in the face of Penn Manor defenders to put his team up 19-12

going into the second quarter.

Sophomore Aidan Mattern and Senior Dhamir Wesley kept the Penn Manor Comets in the game during the first quarter with six points a piece, but nothing else seemed to be going for the stagnant offense and lackluster defense.

In the second quarter both teams started off cold with consecutive misses and a few turnovers on both sides, but Andrew Weidman helped the Mountaineers get the lid off the bucket with a layup to get things going. The Comets were once again led by Mattern and Wesley throughout the quarter, and Mahlandt kept doing his thing going into half time. Penn Manor had narrowed the lead to four (29-25) going into the third quarter.

After the half, Ephrata put their foot on the gas and exploded. They only missed three shots the entire quarter. Penn Manor's offense seemed like they forgot what they were doing when they turned the ball over on four consecutive possessions which led to a 9-0 run in favor of the Mountaineers. By the end of the third quarter Penn Manor was down 44-31 and had let Mahlandt score 15 points, which was a game high going into the fourth.

The fourth quarter was an offensive showcase for Ephrata. They went 9/10 from the field, missing just one lay up in the process. Penn Manor's sloppy play continued, only mustering four points in the period and finishing the game with just 35 points. Ephratas second

Hempfield vs Muhlenberg

by Collin Richardson​

Hempfield uses 20 point 4th quarter to run away from Muhlenberg team

The fans of Hempfield and Muhlenberg were treated to yet another early season thriller Wednesday. The battle of 1-loss teams between the Knights and the Muhls started out slow when the game tipped off. The first point was scored by Muhlenberg, who grew to a lead as big as 10-4 at one point. That was helped in large part by Muhlenberg’s spread offense in the early going. In the first, they scored on 6/11 shooting from the floor. Josh Alcantara had 8 in the 1st on 2/2 shooting from 3 point land, something that Muhlenberg would rely on throughout the game. Hempfield like stated before clawed back into the game generating turnovers and went on a 7-2 run to make it close thanks in part to Miguel Pena’s trey that capped the run. J’Daniel Mosquera 3 pointer kept his Muhls in the lead as the 1st ended.

When the 2nd started, the teams went blow for blow with each other. Kamyn Lawrence, the Carlisle Classic MVP from the last weekend, put up 6 quickly, jumpstarting his big night and the Hempfield offense as a whole. That was quickly stopped, Hempfield’s offense was slowed heavily midway through the 2nd. Muhlenberg threatened to run away again, but this time forcing turnovers on Hempfield's offense, trapping the ball handlers and running the fast break well. Hempfield turned the ball over on 3 straight possessions, and Muhlenberg converted those same turnovers into points. Xzayvion Robertson went on a 5-0 run by himself at one point giving the Muhls the lead of 26-21 with just under 4 minutes until half. After the timeout was called by Coach Walck, his troops fought back from the 5 point deficit and found themselves up 1 heading into the intermission. This time, it was Hempfield’s zone pressure finding their footing and creating offense thanks to turnovers. Miguel Pena even threw a slam dunk down that impressed the fans in attendance.

As the 3rd quarter started, the teams started out slow, but it was still a tight game. Hempfield called a timeout after Xzayvion Robertson’s corner 3 kept Muhlenberg in the game, keeping them within 3 points midway through the 3rd. After the timeout, the teams put together a combined 20 points in 4 minutes. Xzayvion Robertson scored 9, going 3 for 3 from 3 point land. Michael Hester scored 5 in the period, including a trifecta early in the period. Kamyn Lawrence continued his dominant night in the paint, scoring 7 in the frame. He will be a big piece for this ball squad’s success in the coming months.

In the 4th, Muhlenberg tried to drain time off the clock, playing keep away from the Knights, and strengthening the argument for the shot clock in high school yet again. Hempfield played the clock drainage game for long enough, and wouldn’t put up with it anymore. They went on a 10-2 run off of some more steals highlighted by a Ben Troyer and 1 conversion that made the Buchanan Gym explode. As we traveled inside the final minute, Muhlenberg was down 59-53. Alex Collado drained a corner 3 to pull his teammates within 3 with 58.9 left. Muhlenberg played the foul game, and they lost. Miguel Pena drained 5 of his 6 free throw attempts, and he shot down the red hot Muhls with his 20 points, continuing his nice senior season. The Black Knights now move to 3-1, and have Cedar Crest on Friday, opening up Section 1 play in what could be anyone’s division.

CV vs Donegal

by Matthew Ober

Clutch free throw shooting propels Donegal to victory over Conestoga Valley 54-45

Tuesday night there was a basketball game on the court at Donegal High School but there was also some history made as well. It’s believed that for the first time ever in the Lancaster Lebanon League there was a coaching matchup between father and son. Ryan Shipper, who is a first-year head coach for the Donegal Indians is the son of Jim Shipper who is the head coach of the Conestoga Valley program.

I asked Coach Ryan Shipper about coaching against his dad, and he said, “I really tried to enjoy this day. Being present and acknowledging all the emotions throughout the entire day. I was excited to share the court with my dad. It was a celebration for our family tonight. I wanted to make sure that was the priority and we both were able to enjoy it.” After chatting it up pregame, the Shippers went to their respective benches to prepare their squads for the game ahead.

CV would win the tip off and immediately get on the board with a 3 pointer from Senior guard Griffin Rishell. That 3 pointer would be his first out of 5 he made on the night. Two possessions later a James Turbedsky putback would make the score 3-2 in favor of CV. A slow start to the quarter would see Donegal Indians out to a 10-9 lead after 1. Start of the 2nd quarter brought foul trouble and Donegal found themselves in the bonus and shooting 1 and 1’s with 7 minutes left still to play in the half.

Back and forth scoring plus fouling meant both teams were now in the bonus with a little over 4 minutes left in the half. Free throws were going to play a big part the rest of the half. Sophomore guard DeAndre White would hit a big 3 pointer with a minute left to give Donegal the largest lead of the game up to that point. CV would answer with 4 points of their own and the teams would head to the locker room tied at 24.

Buckskins were led by Griffin Rishell who had 13 points and hit 3 times from beyond the arc. Donegal had balanced scoring throughout the half and Sawyer Floyd had 6 points while the rest of his teammates were close behind. Coach Shipper had this to say about the first half performance, “First half we really had to scramble due to foul trouble which took us out of our flow. We had a lot of guys contribute which helped carry us into the second half.” And that balanced scoring definitely carried over to the second half for sure.

To start the half, Noah Rohrer and Sawyer Floyd made some nice defensive plays which led to easy buckets on the other end, but Rishell and CV would not go away, and the game was tied at 29 with 4:45 left in the quarter. A shooting foul on CV would send James Turbedsky to the line where he would sink his 2nd attempt putting his team up 30-29.

After 4 more points from Turbedsky and 2 free throws the Indians found themselves up 36-29 with time running out in the quarter. The 4th quarter started with CV down on the scoreboard, but they certainly clawed their way back into it. A mini 4-0 run and the score was 40-36 with 6 minutes left and this forced Ryan Shipper to burn a timeout. The timeout was what the doctored ordered because the Indians would punch back with a 4-0 run of their own. The run was capped off by an insane play on the inside by James Turbedsky which sent the students into a frenzy.

An inside bucket by CV’s Garrett Funck with 3 minutes left in the game would put the Buckskins within 6 but ultimately that’s all the closer they would get. Four different Indians players would hit ice the game from the free throw line and making the final score 54-45 in favor of the Indians. After the game I asked winning Coach Ryan Shipper about the second half performance and he said, “Second half we did a much better job of playing without fouling. We focused on getting stops and coming up with the 50/50s ball.” And that they did, Noah Rohrer was all over on defense while his teammate James Turbedsky (who ended up with 18 points) was all over on offense. Coach Shipper had this to say about James’s performance after the game, “James was huge tonight. He has done such a great job attacking glass and finishing around the basket.”

Turbedsky was the standout based on points scored for Donegal, but a team win for sure Tuesday night. My final question to Coach Shipper was about the section opener against Catholic on Thursday night and he said this, “We have one day to prepare for Lancaster Catholic. Lancaster Catholic is the gold standard for LL basketball. We have to make sure we have a great practice and are ready for this next challenge.” So, after winning the father-son coaching matchup, Ryan will lead his 4-1 Donegal Indians into Crusader Crazy territory on Thursday night for a section 4 showdown. Even with the loss CV got a huge performance from Griffin Rishell (23 points). They’ll look to bounce back Friday night at home against Solanco.

Hempfield vs Carlisle

By Collin RIchardson

Hempfield wins Carlisle Classic over Carlisle behind Kamyn Lawrence’s 17 point night

Kamyn Lawrence stepped up and assisted the Knights to the win through his aggressive rebounding and putback shots. He put up 17 on the night, highlighted by a 10 point 3rd quarter for him. “He has always had the ability, '' Hempfield Head Coach Danny Walck stated. “It was just a matter of him being consistent and that showed today”.

To start the game, Hempfield’s senior sniper Miguel Pena and Carlisle’s Julian Christopher both hit 3s to start the game, setting the scene for a tight matchup throughout. There was not much more offense in the 1st, both teams relying on zone defense to throw off their opponents scheme. For Hempfield, their offense started to look out of sorts. Forcing shots, airballs, missing free throws gave all the momentum to the Thundering Herd. But, the scoreboard only read Carlisle 12, Hempfield 10.

As the 2nd began, the teams continued to stay close to one another. The defensive pressure motto of the first half continued into the 2nd. There were only 14 points scored by these 2 high-class squads in the 2nd. There was only 1 timeout called by the Thundering Herd right before half after Miguel Pena’s steal and score put the Knights ahead by 2. Those were the final points of the quarter, Carlisle missing a 3 as the halftime horn sounded, and they found themselves down 20-18. 

Miguel Pena also paced all scorers with 7 at the intermission, with Julian Christopher pacing the way for the Thundering Herd with 5. Although it might not have been the high scoring game we might’ve expected, everyone knew this would come down to the wire. Hempfield was up in the rebounding column 13-11, and as the 2nd half started, Kamyn Lawrence would add to the rebounding total for his Black Knights.

Hempfield came out hot in the 2nd half, going on a 6-0 run to start before Parker Smith put out the Hempfield offensive fire, putting in a layup off the glass. Kamyn Lawrence put in 4 of those 6 points to start, kickstarting his big 3rd quarter. Carlisle continued to show fight, starting to heat up from outside. Kamyn Lawrence added 6 more points to his already impressive resume today, grabbing offensive boards and going right back up with them. He scored 10 in the 3rd quarter, but Carlisle outscored Hempfield 16-14 in the 3rd, tying the game at 34 as the 3rd ended thanks to Jaydon Smith’s 7 point frame including a deep 3 to tie.

Both teams started to finally find some rhythm on the offensive side of the ball, both starting to get looks from inside the paint. Junior Ben Troyer had some impressive drives for Hempfield, converting 2x on layups to bring his total to 8. Carlisle continued to hang around and finally tied the game back up with 2:15 to go with the scoreboard reading Carlisle and Hempfield knotted at 42. Kamyn Lawrence continued to impress and put Hempfield up by 2 with 1:04 left after a long drainage of the clock by floor general Miguel Pena. 

Carlisle had 2 chances on their next possession, both shot right under the basket to tie the game, but Spencer Griffin could not find the bottom of the bucket. Junior Nick Deeg swished both of the free throws to put his Knights up 4, and Miguel Pena stayed calm and collected on his FT’s as well to bring his point total to 13. Carlisle made a quick 2, but it was too little too late. Hempfield moves to 2-1 following a 48-44 victory over Carlisle. They play Muhlenberg Tuesday at home.  

Players to Watch PT.2

By Stephin McCloskey

J’Veon Reyes-Vega

Cedar Crest

Vega’s game consists of a lot of off ball movement and catching and shooting from beyond the arc. He gets himself into a rhythm and after that it is lights out for the other team. He has already started off his senior campaign hot. Last game against Conestoga Valley he had 17 points and three assists.

Leo Tirado

Cedar Crest

Tirado might be small, but he hustles like no other on the basketball court. Like Vega he does a lot of his offensive work from behind the three-point line, but he's tenacious when playing defense and getting his teammates involved. He also crashes the boards well for someone his size, bringing in six rebounds against Conestoga Valley.

Tanner Petersheim

Conestoga Valley

Petersheim does everything you ask of a small forward. He plays on and off the ball efficiently, can handle the ball himself when the offense calls for it, and makes everyone around a better basketball player. He can shoot from anywhere on the court as well as drive into the paint for contested layups. Conestoga Valley is going to benefit from his team first mentality this season.

Dylan Kohl


Basketball is not what it was 15 years ago, because now everyone can shoot the ball efficiently, and nothing is different with Dylan Kohl. He works his magic from beyond the arc, just as everyone else on this list. He's just as good inside the paint and shows why he is a versatile two-way player when on defense as well.

Jeff St. Jean

Garden Spot

St. Jean is a defensive stud, posting four steals in Garden Spots last game against Donegal. He is also quite the scorer, who uses his speed and acceleration against his opponents. He also has some handles on him and knows how to move the ball around the court. St. Jean is everything a team asks for in a point guard.

Luke Hines


Hines is a two-sport athlete that takes his athleticism from football and brings it to the basketball court. From what I can see he contributes well on the boards and gets his teammates involved. Like a lot of football/basketball players he plays bully ball to get what he wants. Hines is a great asset for LS this season.

Zachary Kirk


There is not a lot of film on Kirk, but he seems like the kind of player that has a team first mentality. He takes pride in his defensive ability as well. In his last game he posted six points, three rebounds, three assists, and a block. One of his buckets was actually a miraculous half-court shot to end a quarter. It seems Kirk can do a little bit of everything for his Octorara squad.

Trevor Evans


Evans is another multisport athlete who brings his transferable skills to the basketball floor. He has impeccable shorting form that leads to easily made three-point buckets. In his last game against Cocalico he put up 15 points, seven rebounds, three assists, and three steals. He proved he can play on both sides of the ball and help his team win games. Evans looks to propel Warwick into a successful season.

Michael Hester


Hester plays well in the paint on both offense and defense. While on offense he scores points around the blocks and on defense this is where he gets most of his steals. He also rebounds the ball quite well. In his last game against LS, he posted nine points, six rebounds, and a couple of steals. 

Hempfield vs Lampeter-Strasburg

LS’s strong 4th quarter propels them to massive win over Hempfield in rematch of 2021 LL Championship

Both Lampeter Strasburg and Hempfield kicked off their regular season on December 7th. In a rematch of the LL Championship game, Hempfield was out for revenge. Both teams started out slow, the first bucket was scored with under 6 minutes to go in the 1st. In saying that, the score after 1 was 10-9 advantage Pioneers. Both teams got looks outside 3-point land, Chase Smucker, and Dean Herr both hitting from 3-point land to propel the Pios. For Hempfield, Miguel Pena and Michael Hester hit the bottom of the bucket from outside, and Ben Troyer also had an impressive And-1, and converted the free throw.

LS threatened to run away in the 2nd quarter, but Hempfield would show grit and not give in. Chase Smucker and Dean Herr hit more 3 pointers, but Hempfield answered the bell again with 3s of their own. Junior Nick Deeg quietly had 6 points at half, hitting 3s on back-to-back possessions. Senior and returning starter Ben Wert had 5 at the intermission, and Luke Hines also put in 4. The fans packed into the LS gym were craving another tight finish with the Pioneers pulling it out, again.

To start the 3rd, the tables had turned. Hempfield came out firing, scoring 15 points in 6 minutes before Coach Ed Berryman called a TO for his Pioneers. Michael Hester added 6 points off some nice offensive rebounding and putbacks by him. When the timeout was called, Hempfield was leading by 7. LS took a 6-point deficit into the final 8 minutes of play, thanks to a tradeoff of a Smucker 3-point play and a Troyer layup.

As the 4th started, LS went on an 11-0 run to start the 4th. If you’re quick with numbers, that means LS would be up on the scoreboard. Dean Herr drilled 3s to tie and then take a 39-36 lead with just over 2 and a half minutes to go. LS was down by 8 entering the 4th and won this game almost by as many as they were down going into the frame. It’s just something about LS and Hempfield on the hardwood. As the final few minutes burned away, Hempfield kept missing good looks, and LS kept padding their lead. Troyer made a 2, but the game was already won for the Pios. This game was a massive win for a relatively young LS team, and an early season gut check for Coach Danny Walck’s squad. LS is now 2-1, and Hempfield falls to 0-1. 


Indians come into this season with some questions but certainly with some excitement as well. After making some noise last year during the season with some big wins the Indians ended up missing districts by one spot and mere percentage points. They lost some kids to graduation (notably Khalil Madsen, Joesph Turbedsky) but they return talent too. Noah Rohrer, Cole Hess, James Turbedsky and Dutch Good will look to lead this group of Indians. 

Through two games this season they’ve also received contributions from Sawyer Floyd and Evyan Patel. This weekend was Donegals annual tipoff tournament, and the host Indians went 1-1. They beat York Tech handily Friday night then lost the championship Saturday night on a buzzer beater by Palmyra. Also, there is a new face at the head of this program. Ryan Shipper who was an assistant the past few seasons under Kevin Dolan takes over. So good vibes in Mount Joy surrounding this team and they will play a factor in how the section shakes out. To end this preview, I asked new head coach Ryan Shipper a couple questions about the upcoming

season so check that out below!


Q: What’s the feeling going into the season as head coach of this program?

A: There’s a lot of excitement going into this season. We have a nice balance of returning players and

new players in the program.

Q: What’s the team’s strength going to be this year?

A: I think we have an athletic group of guys that have the ability to defend. We have an experienced

back court returning.

Q: Any games you guys have circled on the schedule?

A: No games circled on the schedule. We have 22 opportunities to compete and continue to improve.

LL Basketball Players to Watch

By Stephin McCloskey

Trey Grube

Manheim Central

21 PPG

1,000 Point Scorer

Grube can play on and off the ball at an amazing efficiency. He limits his turnovers and makes flashy passes to open teammates whenever the offense calls for it. Grube is a versatile guard who can drive into the paint and make difficult buckets while drawing fouls. He can also let it rain from beyond the arc, last season he was an all-star shooter with 101 total three pointers. Watch out for this all-out scoring threat this coming season.

Cameron Hurst

Lancaster Mennonite

1,000 Point Scorer

Hurst plays effortlessly on both sides of the ball. While watching film he was able to shut down all positions with steals, blocks, and lock down defense. Camden likes to score most of his buckets from inside the paint and around the elbows. He also has a knack for rebounding and getting his teammates involved. This all-around player looks to lead L.M. to a successful winter campaign.

Miguel Pena


Pena’s' game revolves around flashy passes and three-point scoring just like most modern point guards in today's era of basketball. The only difference between Pena and his counterparts is that he does what he does so much better than most of his peers. Hempfield has a wheeler and dealer on their hands, and Pena is looking to have an amazing senior season.

Ben Wert

15.6 PPG


There is not a lot of film on Wert but coming into his senior campaign he's averaging 15.6 points per game, three rebounds per game, and two assists a game. Being a 6’2 guard leaves him with a versatile game that LS will most definitely benefit from this coming season.

Elijah Hamilton


Elijah Hamilton is a dual threat athlete with the ability to throw down fast break dunks or pop to the outside and hit a contested three with someone in his face. He is also quite active on the boards and really knows how to hustle and get his teammates involved. Octorara has some special talent on their hands.

Fernando Marquez

Cedar Crest

Marquez excels in the paint and drawing contact. I would not want to step in his way as he is driving in for a layup. Watching his highlights from last season, it is quite apparent he is a bully ball player. He is incredibly efficient in scoring the ball inside the paint but knows how to pull from range when needed. His ability to get his teammates involved as well as his defensive abilities are noteworthy attributes.

Ethan Benne

Penn Manor

Usually coming off an injury there's some things to worry about, but with Ethan Benne there is not. He is a stretch big that can facilitate the offense like a point guard. Penn Manor is going to greatly benefit from his versatility this coming season.

Braden Cummings


Braden Cummings is a physical guy which probably stems from his football background. That physicality turns into steals, rebounds, and blocks for the varsity squad over in Elizabethtown. His presence on the court does not result in much on the box score, but it gives his team a big body on the court, which is always a plus.

Noah Bailey


Bailey is a big guy that can shoot from the top of the key. There is not much film on him, but he is a well-rounded player on both sides of the ball and on the block. This sophomore is looking to have a breakout season for Solanco.

Aidan Schomp

Cedar Crest

Aidan Schomp is another one of those football guys that brings transferable skills to the basketball court including acceleration, physicality, and tenacity. Schomp excels in the transition game whether it's getting the rebound, setting an outlet pass, or going in for a contested layup he can do it all. Between Marquez and Schomp, Cedar Crest has a young core they can build around for the next two years.

Ben Troyer


Ben Troyer plays both sides of the ball well and crashes the boards for his team at an outstanding rate. He can score from anywhere on the court, and Miguel Pena and the Hempfield varsity squad are going to benefit greatly from Troyer’s all-around efficiency.

Noah Rohrer


Like a few others on this list Rohrer takes his football skills and puts them to work on the basketball court. He does most of his work on the defensive side of the ball, being a ballhawk for Donegal's defense. He can steal and block just as well, if not better than anyone else on the court. He can also score when needed, usually from beyond the arc. Donegal is going to benefit from this multi-sport star regardless of where he is needed on the court.

Sebastian Henson

Manheim Township

Henson's game involves shooting and making threes when his team needs it the most. He fits in well within the M.T. system and plays a role as a utility player. He can guard and score against the 1-4 positions on the court at any time his team needs him to. His blocks and defensive game are emphatic. Henson is one of the only returning players coming off last year’s campaign and he is looking to repeat his scoring success.

Dallas George


Dallas George is always the quickest player on the court for ELCO. He is a flashy passer that hits open teammates for scores and can zoom across the court for a steal at any given time. He can also score the ball when his team needs from either inside the arc or beyond it. Nothing matters for George except helping his team win.

Jonathan Byrd


The hype for Byrd started back when he was a freshman, and he has continued to live up to expectations. Now a Senior the All-Section selection from last year is looking to bring the Red Tornadoes back into the playoffs. Behind his outstanding defense, Byrd is Coach Ramos main facilitator on offense. Look for him to score more this year with the graduation of Hassan Williams and the transfer of Jared Kumah. 

Manheim Township vs Hempfield

by Carl Frederick

On Friday, Manheim Township eliminated Hempfield in dominating fashion. MT’s suffocating defense party started early in the first, when Nick Palumbo picked off a Jackson Landis pass. 10 plays later, Hayden Johnson found Landon Kennel for a 16 yard toss and a 7-0 lead with 2:47 left in the 1st quarter. Now midway through the 2nd quarter, Hempfield started to find their footing on the offense. In this 10 play drive, the Knights tallied 44 yards on the ground and 12 through air delivery. Looking at a 3rd and goal from the 9, the snap was bobbled, and the Blue Streaks started deep in their own territory.

Township again capitalized on Hempfield’s miscues, this time a 46 yarder bolt from sophomore Declan Clancy and now MT was up 2 scores with 2:26 left. Hempfield then had another 4 and out, the drive not even lasting a minute. MT was now looking to go up BIG before half. After an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on the Knights and a broken Hayden Johnson rush of 23 yards, Declan Clancy ran into the endzone for his 2nd TD from 15 yards out. 21-0 with 56.2 ticks left. This time Hempfield had their 3rd 3 and out, the drive not even lasting 35 seconds. 

The punt was also returned to the Hempfield 35 by Charlie Kingsbury, as if MT needed to score more. The Streaks sure tried, but Braydon Felsinger picked off Hayden Johnson’s 1st pass into the endzone, and the halftime horn sounded with the visiting Streaks up BIG at half. To start the 2nd, Hempfield found their offensive footing, and this time turned it into points. Jackson Landis scampered in for a 6 yard TD on a risky 4th and 1.

Speaking of risky, Stephen Katch ran for 40 yards on a 4th and 5 in Hempfield territory on a fake punt. 21-7 Township with 8:06 left in Q3. Hempfield needed a stop, badly. They did not get it. Township marched right down the turf, this time Hayden Johnson in from 20 yards out on 4th and 6. All momentum Hempfield had was killed. Hempfield had Johnson behind the line, but couldn’t take him down. 

Both teams traded a 3 and out as the 3rd rolled up close to 0:00 on the clock, but the first pass of Hempfield’s drive was intercepted by Nick Palumbo to end the 3rd. To pour more salt on the wound, Township started to rub it into the Black Knights, a 25 yard link from Johnson to Lex Haberbosch after some misdirection before the snap. 

Declan Clancy scored 2 plays later for his 3rd TD from 4 yards out. Nick Palumbo again added to his already impressive interception numbers, scoring a 48 yard pick 6 TD with the scoreboard now reading MT 42, Hempfield 7. Hempfield showed grit and fight, but another turnover for the Black Knight offense deep in MT territory helped everyone start moving towards their warm cars and out of the cold. Manheim Township’s backups came in, and did turn the ball over, but it was too little too late. 

The horn sounded with MT dominating the 6A semifinals game 42-7 over rival Hempfield. Manheim Township now plays against Harrisburg on Saturday November 26th at Severance Field for District gold. Hempfield finishes the year 9-3. They won the Section 1 Championship outright, and had a 30-14 quarterfinal win over Carlisle on November 18th. Nothing for Coach Eager and the rest of his players to hang their heads over this year. 

Cocalico vs Solanco

by Stephin McCloskey

The Cocalico Eagles continued the Cinderella march after running all over the Solanco Golden Mules. Sam Steffey, Joshua Myer, and Charles Drain led the way as the 12 seed locked in their bid for a shot at the championship next week.

The game started off slow as neither team could gain ground. Both teams had a run heavy offense and stifling defense, which resulted in six straight punts or turnovers. Finally, the Eagles got something going when Myer scored a six-yard rushing touchdown, which capped off a 12-play drive. This put Cocalico up at the end of the first quarter.

The second quarter mirrored the first, but this time neither team scored and Cocalico went into the half with a 7-0 lead.

Solanco got the ball to start the half but were halted by Drain and the Eagles defense. On the following drive Steffey ran the ball for 40 yards and a score. That was not it from Steffey, after Cocalico shut out the Solanco offense once more, Steffey ran the ball one time for a 50-yard score.

Going into the fourth quarter Cocalico had a nice lead that was increased with another Myer touchdown. With time winding down the Golden Mules had one last kick in them when Mellinger connected with Cunningham for a 36-yard strike. An unsuccessful onside kick sealed the win for the Cocalico Eagles.

Coach Strohl’s squad heads to Exeter next Friday night for the 5A District 3 title. Solanco will see their perfect season come to an end at 11 wins, hats off to the Golden Mules on an outstanding run.

Interview with Chuckie Drain:

SM: Going into Solanco must've been tough. Last time we spoke you talked about the underdog mentality. How were you feeling after that final whistle?

Drain: Yeah, once we realized that we won it was remarkable for us because coming in as a 12 seed no one expected a lot from us, but we've worked very hard as a team and continue to perform.

SM: Your team played well, but you had a fantastic game with a couple of tackles for losses and two sacks in the first quarter alone. What do you do to prepare individually?

Drain: I spend a lot of time watching films to scout and see what their game plan is. Our line up front is spectacular. If they focus on one or two of us, someone else is going to step up and make the plays. Leaning on my teammates and trusting them helps me have a better overall game. 

AA District Championship Game Writeup

by Patrick Weider

Trinity beat Annville-Cleona Friday night 58-27 to win the PIAA District III 2A State Championship Game. Led by a dominant rushing attack and a stingy defense Trinity dominated all night. Trinity led 10-0 after the 1st Quarter and 38-7 at half in a dominant effort. 2nd Year Head Coach Jordan Hill had this to say after the win “It is a huge stepping stone. We hope this is the pillar going forward. My motto is If we are in it. We win it”. This is Trinity’s 3rd District title for their program.

Trinity opened the scoring when Max Schlager rushes it in from 2 yards out on the opening drive. Trinity continued the scoring with a field goal when John Paukovits hit a 24-yarder to extend the lead to 10-0. Messiah Mickens continued the scoring for Trinity when he rushed for 80 yards touchdown. Suddenly Trinity was dominating with a 17-0 lead. Then Annville-Cleona’s offense got rolling. Cael Harter rushed for a 62-yard touchdown run. Trinity then responded with a touchdown pass from Caleb Wray to Cole Cappawanna and Christian Joy rushed a 70 yard touchdown before the half. Trinity 31-Annville-Cleona 7 at the half. A dominant 1st half effort by Trinity.

In the 2nd Half Trinity continued its dominance when Schlager had 2 rushing touchdowns and Messiah Mickens as well rushed for another touchdown. Annville-Cleona would not let up though. Carl Harter and Phoenix Music both rushed for 2 touchdowns on the night. Annville-Cleona runs a veer offense, so they were able to establish the run game themselves as well.

Trinity has a 3 headed rushing attack with Messiah Mickens, Max Schlager, and Christian Joy all night rotating in at running back. Hill on the running backs “It is really a luxury to have. We have 3 guys who can be starters. They both feed off of number 9 (Schlager). They continue to keep going”. The offensive line was also dominant on the night. Creating massive holes for the running backs to run through. Hill said “The big guys never get the love. They did an awesome job tonight”. Schlager had this to say about the rotation at running back “We all want us all to succeed and the breaks really helps”.

For Jordan Hill to win a District Title in year two is very impressive. Max Schlager had this to say about winning the District Title “It is amazing. I have never went over .500 in my entire career. I never won anything until my senior year. We haven’t been in here over a decade”. Great accomplishment by Trinity to win a District Title.  

West Perry vs Lancaster Catholic

by Scott Giebel

West Perry Was Too Much to Handle for Lancaster Catholic

Both teams came into this game with explosive offenses, so to assume this game would be a bit of a shootout would not be a wrong assumption. The game did not end up being with West Perry knocking off unbeaten Lancaster Catholic 63-20.

The game started with Lancaster Catholic kicking off to West Perry and the Mustangs wasted no time in running the ball early with a few decent gains from Marcus Quaker and Trent Herrara who are the main stars in this heavy rushing attack. After starting off well on their first drive quarterback Marcus Quaker decided to take it himself for a 38-yard touchdown and the Mustangs were up early.

Lancaster Catholic had about as bad a start as you can with Will Cranford throwing up a deep ball that was then intercepted at mid-field and Marcus Quaker was electric again in the run game getting his team down to the one which set up Derek Snook for a 1-yard touchdown and the Mustangs went up 14 to 0. Lancaster Catholic was defiantly not out of the game, but if they wanted to stay in it, they needed some big plays and they got just that with Elijah Cunningham who was a workhorse and he was able to get them to the Mustang’s ten, but unfortunately, they ended up fumbling it.

A big development that happened during the game was that the star running back Trent Herrera was out with an injury and his play would be limited which for most teams would be a big blow, but it was evident early West Perry has a deep core of running backs. With this injury Quaker decided to take it himself for most of the drive from the Lancaster 10 and then out of nowhere Mustang’s running back Brad Hockenberry goes off for a 30-yard touchdown to increase the lead to 21-0.

Lancaster Catholic fell behind quickly, but they weren’t out of it yet all they needed to do was tighten up on defense and score some points. This unfortunately would not be the case with the Mustangs picking up right where they left off in the run game with Quaker making some big plays and Brad Hockenberry taking the ball to the house with his second touchdown of the game for 46 yards.

Lancaster Catholic was facing a huge mountain to climb being down 28, but to their credit, they kept working at it by feeding Elijah Cunningham the ball as much as possible because he had been the best player by far for Lancaster Catholic and it paid off as he was able to break for a 57-yard rushing touchdown which meant they were now only down by three scores with a lot of game left. This shift in momentum was short-lived with the Mustangs continuing to run all over the Crusaders and Brad Hockenberry took it to the house again with a 19-yard touchdown which put him at 3 touchdowns and 95 yards rushing on the day and the game was only halfway done as the second half would end with the Mustangs up 35 to 7.

One of the biggest reasons why Lancaster Catholic was having trouble getting drives going was because of Ian Goodling who was their best wide receiver and a really good kicker, so he was a huge reason why the Mustangs were successful. The West Perry offense was just too much in the end as Marcus Quaker would again score with a 22-yard touchdown, Brad’s brother Jenson Hockenberry with a 1-yard touchdown, a 35-yard touchdown by Noland Rathfon, and finally Jenson Hockenberry once again with a 1-yard touchdown.

Even though Lancaster Catholic allowed 63 points they still made things a bit respectable at the end with Terrell Crawley scoring a 70-yard rushing touchdown and Will Cranford throwing a bomb of a pass for 65-yards to Jaevon parker for the touchdown. The Crusaders have an amazing one loss season to be proud of and the Mustangs will move on in the playoffs.

Interview with West Perry head coach Bob Boden

Me: What are a few things that impressed you most about tonight’s game?

Coach Boden: “Our offensive line held up really well and was physical and our defense was really impressive against a good offense, so those are what impressed me most”.

Me: What game planning did you do for this game?

Coach Boden: “We had a bit of a chip on our shoulders with them being ten and zero and us being nine and one, so we knew we had to come out and play fast as well as playing physical”.

Me: What one player impressed you the most?

Coach Boden: “I would say Brad Hockenberry who came in when Trent got hurt and didn’t miss a step”.

Susquehanna Twp vs Lampeter Strasburg

by Stephin McCloskey

The LS Pioneers steam rolled the Hanna Township Indians during their quarterfinal playoff matchup Friday night. Hunter Hildenbrand kept his senior season alive with a dominant performance while nabbing a couple great catches for scores.

The Indians couldn't get anything going on their first drive, which ended in a botched punt. This gave LS great field possession. Carson Coleman led the way for the Pioneers on their first offensive drive while running for twelve yards and a score.

After another three and out Suquehanna Township bobbled another snap, leaving LS with even greater field position. Coleman again ran the ball in for a score after carrying the ball twice for twelve yards. At the middle of the first quarter the Pioneers held a 14-0 lead.

The nail in the coffin came when Susquehanna Township lost the ball on downs and Hildenbrand brought the ball in for a 29 yard reception and score, putting LS up 21-0. After a shaky start the Indians were finally able to score after a great outside rush from a running back midway through the second quarter. This would be their only score of the game.

Hildenbrand, Coleman, and Wagner would go on to completely dominate the Susquehanna defense with a routing victory of 52-6. The Pioneers head to Manheim to face the Barons in the 5A semifinals this Friday.

Interview with Hunter Hildenbrand

SM: You played well. What was your mentality going into the game?

HH: Going into the game I had the mentality it was a championship game. Senior year I could just think of how I would want to go out. A playoff game is win or go home so you must have the right mindset and the whole team.

SM: I have never seen a score so lopsided. When did you know the nail was in the coffin?

HH: The score showed great complementary football. Our defense only held the Indians to six points, and that was the only play we got lazy. The nail was in the coffin when our starters got out of the game.

SM: What was your favorite memory as a pioneer these last few years?

HH: As a pioneer I have had the best memories and seasons a pioneer could have. My favorite memory is the playoff runs over the last couple of years. The Bishop McDevitt game was the best. The outcome was not what we wanted, but that was one of the most competitive football games I have and will ever play in. The best overall has just been hanging with the guys though.

Interview with Trent Wagner

SM: What was the game plan going into tonight's game? Your entire team looked extremely prepared?

TW: The game plan was to get back to our roots. We have to do what we know and perfect it.

SM: How are you going to prepare for next week?

TW: We all know what's ahead. We need to prepare mentally more than anything. They have a lot of defensive sets that we need to get ready for.

Carlisle vs Hempfield

by Collin Richardson

Hempfield takes care of business, eliminates Carlisle in D3 6A playoffs

The playoffs are finally here. Hempfield and Carlisle were set to square off in the quarterfinals of the District 3 6A playoffs. Both teams started out tense, both with a 3 and out. On Hempfield’s 2nd drive, Jackson Landis found Andy Garcia for 11 yards and an early lead with 3:11 left to cap a 5-minute drive in Q1.

This drive was helped by the ground attack of Hempfield, thanks in large part to Grant Hoover, who had back-to-back runs of 20 and 19. He had 58 yards on the ground this drive; a theme that would carry on through the game. After Carlisle’s 2nd 3 and out, Hempfield padded their lead thanks to a Cannon Biscoe 38-yard FG with 7:02 left in the 2nd quarter.

Hempfield’s offense is a slow and steady offense, ground, and pound type team. They are very good with clock management, and take their time on offense, a compliment to George Eager and his play calling. Hempfield converted 4 of 6 3rd downs in the half to move the chains and continue drives. Carlisle gained one 1st down late in the 1st half but was again forced to punt.

Carlisle was swamped by the Hempfield defense, the defensive line closed up gaps and pressured Carlisle QB, Louis Shank, all night. With 4:41 left, the Black Knights got the ball back. On the 7th play of the drive, Jackson Landis held onto the read option and fooled the entire Carlisle defense and ran 41 yards for a now large lead of 17-0 with 1:54 until the break. The play before the touchdown, Grant Hoover took a bone crunching hit, and did not return.

Hempfield hopes to have him back for next week. Carlisle showed grit and scored points with just under a minute to go. Louis Shank found Carson Swartz for 65 yards and the score was now reading 17-7 as the halftime horn sounded. Carlisle put together a nice drive to open the 2nd but could not convert. Hempfield did the same, a long, timely drive that they too could not turn into points.

Cannon Biscoe’s FG was short, and Carlisle started in better field position than they’d been in all night. Looking at a 3rd and 12, Head Coach Brett Ickes planned to do a screen pass. Aidan Shorter was prepared. He jumped right up and plucked the ball out of the air and returned it to the Carlisle 2. Teammate Stephen Katch would barrel in for his 1st TD of the night the play after. “These guys are bought in,” said defensive coordinator Jay Ridinger. “We have a very smart group of guys, and that makes my job a lot easier.” As the 4th quarter started, Hempfield was leading 23-7, well on their way to the semi-finals.

To put the finishing touches on, Stephen Katch bounced off a few tackles for his 2nd TD midway through the final frame from two yards out. As Carlisle was forced to punt yet again, Hempfield got the ball back looking to burn off more of the clock. Junior Elijah Walls got most of the workload in the backfield, rushing for 22 yards on 6 carries. Cody Gehres’s attempted 1st down pass with 2:12 left was intercepted by Ez Thomas and taken 82 yards to the endzone for a late TD.

The scoreboard now was flickering Hempfield 30, Carlisle 14. Stephen Katch then ran out the remaining 2:03, and Hempfield punched their ticket to the 6A semi-final game against Manheim Township, who defeated Cumberland Valley 37-31. This week 5 rematch might decide who wins the District 3 tournament. Two of the best teams in the LL playing their best football in mid-November, what else can you ask for? The Round 2 battle between Manheim Township and Hempfield will be Friday November 18th at 7 pm in Landisville. 717 sports will have full coverage of what should be an incredible heavyweight battle. 

Solanco vs Shippensburg

by Carl Frederick

Solanco holds of Shippensburg’s rally advancing to the district 3 Semi-Finals

It may not have been the finished they would have wanted, but Solanco behind Josiah Forren’s monster evening held off Shippensburg 42-35. “I did not like the way we finished” Forren said “Happy we won but not happy with how we finished”. The Golden Mules remain a perfect 11-0 on the year as they will welcome Cocalico for a rematch next Friday.

Forren and company had control early, after holding the Greyhounds on an opening drive turnover on downs, the Mules began to work. Behind Senior Brody Mellinger the home squad took an opening 16 play drive for 6, when the Quarterback plunged in from the 6-yard line for the score. After 1 quarter the score remained 7-0, but Mellinger quickly added his second rushing touchdown this time from the 10, giving Solanco a 14-0 lead.

The Mule’s defense was on point in the first half shutting down the Greyhounds on multiple occasions, after a long Forren run, Mellinger would add his third score of the half with a 5-yard scamper (21-0). On the ensuing possession Shippensburg had a costly fumble and Solanco was back in business. 3 plays later that man Josiah Forren again would finish things off going up the middle for a 6-yard score (28-0). Momentum started to slowly shift to the visiting Shippensburg squad as Quarterback Tucker Chamberlain took the quarterback draw from the 2 to put the Greyhounds on the board late in the half (28-7).

The third quarter started with more of the same for the Mules, after Forren nearly took the kickoff for a score, capped things off with a 19-yard Jet sweep, giving Solanco a 35-7 lead early third quarter. What changed after this possession was that Shippensburg’s high potent offense came to life, Senior Trae Kater answered with his first touchdown on the night from the 3 (35-14).

Shippensburg rally did not stop as they caught Solanco off guard with the ensuing onside kick and had the ball deep in Mule’s territory. It was a play that didn’t necessarily surprise Coach Cox’s team “we practiced all week that onside stuff, telling our guys not to move until the ball is kicked” Coach Cox said. It was all the Greyhounds needed with Kater adding his second score on the night this time from the 13-yard line making it 35-21 Solanco late in the third quarter.

Solanco behind their triple-option answered the next possession with Senior Fullback Cole Harris capping it off for his first and only score on the evening (42-21). Just when it appeared the Mules could start celebrating Chamberlain hit his brother Troy Chamberlain streaking down the sideline for a 48-yard touchdown pass. This left the score 42-28 Solanco and on their next possession which bled the fourth quarter clock, saw the Mules turn the ball over on downs at the Shippensburg 8.

Chamberlain would quickly work Shippensburg down the field, hitting on 3 big pass plays and hit Kater (third score on the night) on a 5-yard slant for the touchdown. With 3:25 left the Greyhounds had cut this once insurmountable lead to 42-35.

The visitors were unable to have one more possession as Solanco behind a big run again by Forren (176 yards rushing, 2 touchdowns) sealed the deal and ran off the clock. The Golden Mules were able to hold homefield and advance to the district 3 5A semi-finals. “It feels great, it was our get back from Freshman year (referring to Shippensburg previously beaten them in the playoffs” Forren said “Not the finish we want, we will need to be ready for Cocalico as they play a similar style to us”.

Solanco will welcome 12th seed Cocalico next Friday night, they faced off back in week 2 with the Mules coming out on top 21-7, Coach Cox knows the challenge they have next week “It’s gonna be a battle, it’s gonna be a chess team” Coach replied “Bryan (Cocalico HC Bryan Strohl) does a great job with them, our Seniors will have to step up.”

McCaskey Signing Day Program










November 9, 2022


4:00 – 4:05 PM--------------------GREETINGS, JON MITCHELL, AD

4:05 – 4:15 PM-----------------------------ATHLETE RECOGNITION


4:20 – 4:30 PM-------------------------PHOTOS & REFRESHMENTS


Lucie de Syon - TRACK & FIELD

Davidson College (North Carolina)

6 Varsity Letters

All-Star 4x4 relay 2021-22

Member of the School Record 4x400

First Team All-Star 2021 and 2022 (soccer) 

Kamyah Wright - TRACK & FIELD

University of Richmond (Virginia)

11 Varsity Letters

7 Outdoor League Gold Medals

1 Silver District Medal

3 State Medals

PIAAA Silver Medalist

Member of the School Record 4x400

4 Time Indoor State Medalist

AUU and USATF All-American

Kamiah Wright - TRACK & FIELD

University of Richmond (Virginia)

11 Varsity Letters

7 Outdoor League Gold Medals

1 Silver District Medal

4 Gold District Medals

2 State Medals

PIAAA Silver Medalist

4 Time Indoor State Medalist

2 Time AUU and USATF All-American

Lancaster Catholic vs West Perry

by Scott Giebel

Friday’s game is shaping up to be a good one as we have the West Perry Mustangs (10-1) going up against undefeated Lancaster Catholic Crusaders. This playoff game is going to feature two high-powered offenses which are both averaging about 35 points a game alongside some pretty good defenses, so we will see if it’s a high-scoring game or more of a defensive battle on Friday.

The Lancaster Catholic offense is led by Senior Will Cranford who is completing 63 percent of his passes and has thrown for 1,805 yards and 21 touchdowns to 4 interceptions which a really nice number for the season. His main receiver Jaevon Parker leads the team in receptions with 44 and he has caught 14 touchdowns with 913 receiving yards. Lastly, we have the workhorse of the team Elijah Cunningham who has 124 for 940 yards and 13 rushing touchdowns. Overall, the Crusaders have put together and scary good offense which will be showcased on Friday.

The West Perry Mustangs are equally as explosive on offense, and it all starts with their star quarterback Marcus Quaker who is a dual threat and has thrown for 2,058 yards and 23 touchdowns with 6 interceptions plus 962 yards rushing with 22 rushing touchdowns which is very impressive. They also have a very talented running back in Trent Herrera who has 927 yards rushing and 9 touchdowns. Lastly, we have wide receiver Ian Goodling who has 68 catches for 1,247 yards and 15 touchdowns. This team is going to give the undefeated Crusaders all they can handle with their balanced offense.

Both teams have equally good offenses which should make the game very exciting and her at 717 Sports Media we cannot wait to see how this one plays out, so make sure to follow us on twitter for updates on the score and big plays as well as articles on the game after which are posted on our website. 

 For all the updates follow me on twitter @Sciebel

Cocalico vs E-Town

by Stephin McCloskey

Led by Joshua Myer and Samuel Steffey, the Cocalico Eagles blew out the Elizabethtown Bears 42-2. The veer offense and young core went into an away playoff game and showed that the Eagles have what it takes to win it all this year. Myer and Steffey had more than 250 combined rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns. The offensive clinic started right out of the gate on the Eagles first possession when Myer ran the ball in for a score from five yards out, putting Cocalico up early.

On Elizabethtown’s first possession they fumbled the ball and Cocalico recovered. On Cocalico’s next offensive possession Steffey ran the ball five times for a total of 37 yards and a score. By the end of the first quarter the only momentum that the Bears had was a botched snap that resulted in a safety leaving the score at 14-2. It would not get any better for E-Town for the entirety of the game.

On the first drive of the second quarter Steffey again carried most of the workload for Cocalico. This time he ran the ball seven times for a total of 57 yards and another touchdown. After the kickoff it looked like E-Town was starting to shape up and grab momentum, but a turnover on downs halted any kind of advance they had. Cocalico took advantage when Myer ran the ball in for his second score, but this time from only two yards out. The Myer score put the Eagles up 28-2 going into the half.

The second half started off slow with two punts and a missed field goal, but it did not take Myer long to gather his third score of the night, putting the soaring Eagles up 35-2. The last score of the night came from Dane Horning, the only freshman on Cocalico’s varsity squad, which sealed the victory for the Eagles. The final score ended 42-2.

The Cocalico Eagles are flying high going into next week's match up against powerhouse Gettysburg High School, who are well rested and coming off a bye week. It should be a great matchup.

Interview with Chuckie Drain

SM: You guys played really well and looked extremely prepared. What was the difference maker going into the kickoff?

Drain: I would say the difference maker going into kickoff was the underdog mentality we had. Sneaking into the last sport we knew that we had an uphill battle and a lot of work to do.

SM: What is the preparation going to look like going into next week playing Gettysburg?

Drain: Well prep hard like we always do and play the full 48 minutes.

SM: What was the best moment for you and the entire team last night?

Drain: The best moment of the night was going into halftime 28-2 because it proved to us all our prep during the week was paying off. 

Donegal vs York Suburban PREVIEW

Friday night in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs will be a rematch between 7th seeded York Suburban and 10th seeded Donegal. The two teams faced off in week 2 this season in Mount Joy and the Trojans ran away from Donegal and the final score wound up being 41-18.

Mikey Bentivegna the running back for the Trojans did everything that night. He ran for touchdowns and even threw for a touchdown. Donegal’s main concern on defense will be to make sure they have eyes on where #2 is. If the Indians can bottle him up and force a turnover or 2 just like they did the first time around things could get interesting.

As for Donegal on offense, Noah Rohrer has been the star so far, but his teammates are starting to provide the help that’s needed to be successful. Ruben Mumper and Tyler Sload have settled into the backfield next to Rohrer. Also, Senior Quarterback Landen Baughman has started to find his groove late in the season.

The names I mentioned will have to come up big for Donegal to put points on the board. York Suburban is the favorite based on what happened last time but the team at 717 Sports is very interested to see if the Indians can keep it close this time and maybe even have a very fun bus ride home over the route 30 bridge come late Friday night. I will be providing updates throughout on twitter @rebO_96, check in with me for what should be an entertaining rematch.

Central York vs York High

Central York dominated York High early and then hung out for a 43-38-win Friday night to improve to 9-1 on the year and another YAIAA Division 1 Title. This is Central York’s 4th straight Division 1 Title and have now won 26 straight league games stretching over 4 years. Head Coach Gerry Yonchiuk “It is an awesome win and to win another league title means so much to our kids”.

Central York was missing Nasir Still their starting Quarterback for the game, so they came out and ran the Wildcat with running back Juelz Goff starting as Quarterback. Goff ran the ball 35 times for 215 yards on the evening. Coach Yonchiuk on playing Goff at QB “He is just a special player and we put the ball in his hands and he delivered”.

Goff scored on the 1st play of the game when he ran for a 65-yard touchdown. He also rushed it in from 15, and 1 yard out in the 1st half. York High was able to stay within striking distances when running back Jaheim White and Quarterback Sam Stoner both rushed for touchdowns in the 1st Half. Also, Parker Hines rushed it for a 77-yard touchdown in from the Quarterback position for Central York. Central York went into the Half with a 36-16 lead.

In the 2nd Half York High came out and scored on their 2nd possession of the half when Jaheim White caught a 10-yard touchdown to claw the Bearcats back to 36-24. York High got another stop on Central York and then marched down again for a touchdown when Jaheim White rushed it in from 1 yard out to make it a ball game with Central York leading 36-32. Central York had struggled to move the ball in the second half when they got the ball game with 9:34 left in the game.

Central York then preceded to systematically march down the field on York High to try to ice the ball game. Yonchiuk said “Our strength is our offensive line on this team”. He relied on them all night, even with York High having 10 or 11 players in the box to stop the run. The mindset on the last drive for Central York Yonchiuk said was “Seniors lets go and let’s go win the game”. Also, he followed it up by saying “Our guys never panic”. Lead by Goff and the offensive line Central York iced the game away and Goff rushed it in for his 4th touchdown on the game with 1:09 left to take a commanding 43-32 lead. York High would score one more touchdown, but Central York recovered the onside to secure the 43-38 win.

For Central York it was a rivalry game and a chance to win another YAIAA Division 1 title for them. Juelz Goff had this to say about the win “We just had to finish them and send them home”. In a matchup of Division 1 running backs between 2023 West Virginia commit and Juelz Goff (several Division 1 Football offers) Goff was the star of the night playing Quarterback when his team needed, and Central York needed everything from him to get the win.

Hempfield vs Reading

Hempfield runs wild, runs away with outright Section 1 trophy for first time in 28 years

On Friday, the Hempfield Black Knights defeated the Reading Red Knights at Albright College and clinched the LL Section 1 trophy outright. The last time Hempfield won the Section 1 title was 2004, sharing it with longtime rival Manheim Township. So safe to say, it’s been a while since a trophy has come to Landisville. They beat out teams like Wilson and MT, both teams HC George Eager has ties to. Eager even said he uses some of the things both of those teams do to win championships. “I’ve tried to bring some points from Wilson over here. Wilson was dominant in the weight room, and that’s what we are trying to do.”

Hempfield could do almost no wrong in the 1st half. The defense was SUFFOCATING Amier Burdine and the rest of the Reading offense in the 1st half. Sophomore Brody Gebhard and Junior Deyvid Palepale both had 3 sacks in just the 1st half, and both had 1 TFL also. “When you have some success, guys buy in.” Again, said Eager, praising his guys that will return next fall. On the offensive side, Grant Hoover and Stephen Katch both ran in 2 TDs. Every offensive play on the first drive went through Grant Hoover. He had 8 yards receiving, and 36 yards on the ground including a 19-yard dash to put Hempfield up 7-0 with 6:47 left. On Hempfield’s 2nd drive, they’d only need 3 plays to score again thanks to junior Micah Gates' return to the Reading 30. Hoover broke away from 5 yards out to make it 14-0. As Reading’s offensive woes continued, 

Hempfield got the ball back. Stephen Katch started his duties carrying the ball, and on Hempfield’s 3rd drive he ran in from 10 yards out and started to pad their lead. 21-0 Hempfield and it would just get worse. Hempfield put up a Cannon Biscoe 28-yard FG on their next drive, a nice red-zone stop from Reading. Hempfield’s blitz was too much for Reading, and after the touchback Reading was looking at a 4th and 27. In their own endzone, the ball was muffed and rolled out of the endzone for a safety. Jackson Landis then got himself on the scoresheet on the next drive putting a ball right into Micah Gates’ mitts for 5 yards and the score. The junior duo also had a 21-yard gain to start the drive and the scoreboard now read 32-0 with 1:04 until the break. Reading gained the 1st down offensively on a Amier Burdine rush of 20 yards, but the horn sounded to end the half.

The opening drive of the 3rd was the 1st time Hempfield did not score points. They drove to the brink of the red zone, but Biscoe’s FG was short. After Reading’s 6th 3 and out, Micah Gates had another nice punt return, setting up Hempfield in the RZ. Stephen Katch would run 3 straight plays for 17 yards, and after the 3rd play, he was in the endzone for his 2nd. Reading’s 1st play of their ensuing drive gave the Reading fans something to cheer about. 

Amier Burdine found Reuben Rodriguez for 80 yards and the score. Cameron Small also had the 2-point conversion so the score read 40-8 with 5:13 left in Q3. As subs started to trickle in and out, Hempfield was forced to punt after flags and tackles behind the line forced the Black Knights to punt as the 4th quarter started. In the drive that burned off 7 minutes (thanks to running clock) Amier Burdine again found Reuben Rodriguez for 71 yards and another score. As the final horn sounded, Hempfield won the game 40-16. The water jugs were poured on the coaches, and Hempfield got back on the bus finishing the regular season 8-2, and an undefeated 6-0 record in Section 1. An incredible year for the Black Knights. They will find out who they play this coming Friday 11/4 as the D3 6A playoff bracket will be finalized by Sunday.   

Wilson vs Manheim Township

Cam Jones and the Wilson Bulldogs hold off Manheim Township

Heading into week 10 both teams had playoff positions wrapped up, this game was more about seeding than anything as they could very easily face off again. Behind 248 rushing from Senior Cam Jones, the Wilson Bulldogs held off Manheim Township 27-21. Jones accounted for two rushing touchdowns and one passing as he once again was leading the charge for the Bulldogs “Feeling good, we our team came together, and we got a big win” the Holy Cross commit replied.

Things did not start out as planned for the visiting team as Manheim Township behind star quarterback Hayden Johnson were on the attack early. On the opening drive the Junior lead the Blue Streaks for an 82-yard scoring drive capping it off with an 18-yard touchdown strike to Landon Kennel (7-0). Manheim Township would eventually force a Wilson punt on the Bulldogs next possession following an Eli Rodriguez sack.

The Bulldogs tightened up defensively and methodically found their way to the endzone with just under 30 seconds to play until halftime. Behind Jones carving through the Blue Streaks defense, quarterback Tommy Hunsicker hit Edison Case for a 13-yard pass play (their longest of the night). Hunsicker called his own number for Wilson’s first score taking a 8 yard quarterback draw for the score. An illegal substitution penalty against Manheim Township set Wilson up for a shorter two-point conversion try and you know Coach Dahms would not pass on the opportunity. Cam Jones converted the two-point conversion and just like that Wilson went into halftime with the lead and momentum up 8-7.

The third quarter Jones carried the Bulldogs down the field but instead of using his legs, he used his hand to find Nick Weitzel for a 5-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was no good leaving the score at 14-7. Hayden Johnson and company wasted no time as they came right back, with the Junior turning the corner for an 18-yard rushing touchdown (14-14).

Both offenses were rolling at this point, Jones busted through a hole behind stud lineman Jack Dendall on the next possession for a 54-yard scamper. The third quarter would end with Wilson holding a 21-14 advantage. Sophomore Declan Clancy for Manheim Township joined the party when he took a handoff and went 45 yards for a score tying the game back up at 21-21.

Wilson went back to what was working as their next possession went deep into the fourth quarter and was capped off with a Cam Jones 4-yard touchdown run. This drive for the Bulldogs went for 10 plays over 71 yards and deep into the final quarter. The extra point try saw Coach Dahms accept the Manheim Township personal foul penalty and go for two once again. Unfortunately for Wilson this did not work out as the Blue Streaks stuffed the two-point attempt leaving the score at 27-21.

Manheim Township came back down the field and Johnson hit Kennell for a big fourth down conversion. Up to their own 46-yard line, the Blue Streaks could not advance any further as their 4th down pass fell incomplete. Jones would seal the deal converting third and short and running out the clock for the Wilson victory.

“We had some plays, and we made the plays” Coach Dahms said “I don’t think they’re a clear-cut favorite for the 6A playoffs, anyone can beat anyone.” Wilson will wait final word, but it looks like they may be traveling to 3 seed Harrisburg next week while Manheim Township could be looking at a rematch with Cumberland Valley. The District playoff brackets should be set by tomorrow, as Coach Dahms said any of the 8 teams in the 6A region can win it.

Lancaster Catholic vs Schuylkill Valley Preview

by Scott Giebel

Lancaster Catholic who is a perfect 9 and 0 on the season will be taking on Schuylkill Valley Friday night and this should be a good one with both teams having good records and Schuylkill Valley being number two on the conference and Lancaster Catholic being number one.

Lancaster Catholic will be coming in with their high-powered offense that starts with Will Cranford who has thrown for 1656 yards and 20 touchdowns on the season and has a completion percentage of 64 percent, and he wouldn’t be where he is without his favorite target Jaevon Parker who is averaging 78 yards a game and has 824 yards and 13 receiving touchdowns. Elijah Cunningham has also impressed this season where he is averaging 98 yards a game with 638 yards and 8 rushing touchdowns on the season.

Schuylkill Valley unlike Lancaster Catholic who has a very balanced offense relies on the run game heavily with their star running back Dom Giuffre averaging 8 yards a carry and 1,321 yards on the season with 20 touchdowns. Starting quarterback Michael Goad is throwing at 60 percent on the season with 2 touchdowns and their leading receiver in touchdowns is Dillon Lackner with three. Now even though the offense might not be as balanced it is high-powered with them averaging about 35 points in all their victories this season.

Both teams are explosive offensively, but Lancaster Catholic will have the surprising edge on Schuylkill Valley who are 2 and 2 at home while on the hand Lancaster Catholic are a perfect 4 and 0 on the road, so it should be an interesting game to watch and we will see if Lancaster Catholic will get their first loss of the season or if they can stay perfect on the season. 717 Sports Media is excited to see how this one turns out and it should be one of the best games of the season!

Ephrata at Elizabethtown Preview

by Matthew Ober

Ephrata Mounts- 3-2 League Record, 6-3 Overall. 11th in District 3 Class 5A Power Rankings.

E-town Bears- 3-2 League Record, 7-2 Overall. 6th in District 3 Class 5A Power Rankings.

Yes, the outcome of this game may not have a lot of impact on the section race, but it certainly will have an impact on how the final district power rankings play out. Ephrata will come into Etown Friday night looking to secure their spot in the District playoffs. They are on a 3-game win streak and looking to head into the postseason on a high note.

QB Sam McCracken has been making plays through the air for the Mounts. He’s been efficient and has TD passes to 8 different receivers. Star running back Andre Weidman has been as advertised. Already over 1000 yards and counting he’s hard to stop. With the air and ground attack, Etown’s defense will be tested for sure. Etown has let teams score on them, but they are only giving up 275 yards total a game which is second best in the section. With the home field advantage and if Etown bottles up Weidman they have a chance to spoil Ephrata’s playoff hopes and make a statement heading into the postseason.

As for E-town, they are safely in the Class 5A field, so they are looking to get back on track and head into the postseason on a high note. The Bears offense has been rolling all season, putting up big time stats. They’ve been led by QB Josh Rudy who’s been absolutely electric. He’s completed 65 percent of his passes and thrown for almost 2,500 yards.

Oh, and his TD to Interception ratio is pretty good too. While he’s been leading the Bears through the air, 1000-yard rusher Logan Lentz has been leading the charge in the ground game. Mounts defense will have a tough assignment come Friday night. The Bears offense leads all of Section 3 in yards per game. Ephrata defense is mid pack defensively in the section. The key for them is to try and get a turnover or two early and capitalize. If they can do that and take the crowd out of it early, they’ve got a shot to join the Class 5A playoff party.

Solanco vs Garden Spot

by Stephin McCloskey

The 7-2 Garden Spot Spartans will be taking on the 9-0 Solanco Golden Mules this Friday night in Solanco. This LL-3 game is shaping up to be one of the best playoff games in the league, and 717 is excited to see who comes out on top.

While the Golden Mules went undefeated, their offense is certainly unapologetically one-dimensional. Cole Harris averaged 88 yards off the line of scrimmage compared to the offensive juggernaut in Kyle Harting (Garden Spot’s leading rusher as well) who averaged 104.1 rushing yards per game. It is the same story in the passing game. Brody Mellinger averaged just 52.3 passing yards per game compared to Harting’s 186.7 yards per game.

When both teams have shared common opponents Garden Spot has lost to both Conestoga Valley and Twin Valley, while on the other hand Solanco blew out C.V. and put up a tough win against Twin Valley.

Usually an anomaly in sports, Garden Spot has a better record when going into another opponents territory and is 4-0 in doing so. This may give them an advantage going into Friday's game, but the Mules defense looks to be stifling when stopping the pass and tackling in the open field. Solanco had over 300 solo tackles this year, which is over 100 more than the national average. They also had 12 interceptions and over 100 interception yards.

For Garden Spot this game is going to come down to running the ball against a pass resistant defense that struggles to stop backs at the line. Solanco, one of the only undefeated teams in the competitive LL-Berks League, gameplan must consist of stopping the rush against a team with 30 sacks and getting to the outside in the run game. If both teams do what they need to do this game could turn into an instant classic.

717 Sports Media CANNOT wait to see who comes out on top in this section 3 matchup featuring the Garden Spot Spartans taking on the undefeated Solanco Golden Mules.

Hempfield vs Cedar Crest

by Collin Richardson

Hempfield avoids trap, clinches Section 1 title with blowout revenge win over Cedar Crest

Friday night was Senior Night for Cedar Crest’s seniors on the football team. Many of the seniors said as I was walking into Earl Boltz Stadium that their best football memory was “upsetting Hempfield.” That heartbreaking loss basically ended Hempfield’s chance at a Section 1 title. This year, the stakes were different. Hempfield’s HC George Eager wanted revenge from last year, and in doing so clinch at least a share of the Section 1 Championship.

This game started out like another trap game. Nobody scored in the 1st quarter. Both defenses impressed early. In Cedar Crest’s opening drive, Penn State Recruit Deyvid Palepale took down half-back Isiah Gonzalez behind the line, and he was also responsible along with Aidan Shorter and sophomore Brody Gebhard in taking down Crest QB Jackson Custer for a sack on 3rd down. In Hempfield’s first offensive drive, junior Kenyon Figueroa recovered a Grant Hoover fumble on the 3rd play of the drive. Cedar Crest then was forced to punt after a 3 and out with 6:36 left in Q1. Palepale again tipped an attempted 3rd down pass to Aiden Schomp to force 4th and 5.

Hempfield then got inside the red zone, but Cannon Biscoe’s attempted FG from 27 yards out was missed early in the 2Q. Hempfield’s defense again kept the Knights in the game. Hoover picked off Custer, and Hempfield started with the ball at the CC 33. Hempfield threw the ball 6 out of 7 times on this drive. Landis then found Gabe Benjamin on the 7th play for a TD and the 7-0 lead with 8:15 until half. Crest then put together a 10-play drive that put them just on the outside of the redzone, but Deyvid Palepale picked off Custer for the 2nd time in the half. “Whenever you play good defense, you can win any game you are in. We work to set up our offense in a position to win.” Said Eager. The Knights offense drove in about 3 minutes to take a 10-0 lead with 33 ticks until half. Landis escaped the blitz by CC and ran for 33 yards on 3rd and 6 to set up the Knights at the 35 and continue the drive. Cedar Crest then had a 3 and out to end the half.

CC’s defensive line stopped Hempfield on the opening drive, taking down Hempfield backs behind the line and forcing Landis to throw the ball out of bounds. CC got into the redzone, but again could not convert it into points, missing a field goal. On the 6th play of the Hempfield drive, Grant Hoover broke free of a few tackles and scored from 43 yards out, padding Hempfield’s now 17-0 lead. Cedar Crest, who was now starting to panic, tried to go to the air more. Incompletions on 1st and 3rd down forced the Falcons to punt yet again.

The teams then traded the ball back and forth as the 4th quarter started. Lots of punts, including 3 consecutive 3 and outs. Hempfield then had their bruising RB Stephen Katch run for 12, 11, and 5 in a row. After that, Jackson Landis threw a 24-yard lob to Julian Morales for 24 yards and the final score of the game. CC had the ball with 6:23 left attempting to break the shutout. Custer and crew did march to the 35, but the attempted run-on 4th and 2 was shut down. Hempfield kneeled and clinched at least a share of the Section 1 Crown. Hempfield can clinch the Section 1 championship outright if they can beat Reading at Albright College this coming Friday, 10/28. Cedar Crest falls to 4-5 and can gain a .500-win percentage if they can beat Lebanon week 10 in “The Cedar Bowl”

Donegal vs Elco

by Matthew Ober

Donegal wins on Homecoming in a thriller 20-19 over ELCO

Anytime Donegal and ELCO matchup on the football field it’s bound to be a good one. Friday night was no different as it came down to the final seconds. It was the homecoming game for Donegal, so the stands were packed, and the students decked out in green and white. I had the privilege to talk to Donegal running back Noah Rohrer about the game. I asked him about the atmosphere and the impact of all the festivities throughout the week, he said “All week we had been anticipating the incredible atmosphere of the game. We knew we would have a nice crowd and the buildup throughout the week placed high stakes on the game.” You could definitely feel the game had high stakes, as both teams were looking for positive momentum to end the season.

First quarter both teams struggled to get much going and both defenses were playing well. The scoring would open in the second quarter when Donegal running back Rueben Mumper would plow over an Elco defender on his way to the end zone from 9 yards out. The Indians would take a 7-0 lead into the locker room at the half. Rohrer talked to me about the offense and the first half, he said “Offensively, we dominated early on which helped us win the first half however we struggled to finish drives which ended up making the game way closer than it should have been.” Credit to Elco defense as they did indeed thwart many Donegal drives even making a 4th down stop when the Indians were 1 yard away from scoring. The defensive effort of Elco did indeed keep them in it till the end. Homecoming festivities took place during halftime and Makayla Ober was crowned the homecoming queen. With a 7-0 lead and the excitement of the crowning the 3rd quarter started.

Elco received the second half kickoff, but they would give Donegal the ball in perfect field position when a mishandled handoff ended a 4th down attempt. Elco defense held but the leg of Donegal punter Landen Baughman put the ball on the 2-yard line of Elco. Three plays later a fumble was forced and on the next offensive play Rueben Mumper again ran somebody over on his way to the end zone for his 2nd touchdown of the night. Rueben Mumper stepped into a halfback role after injuries to the Donegal backfield. Rohrer had this to say about his teammate’s performance, “Ruben balled out and was definitely the MVP of the game. I have been playing backyard football with Ruben since I can remember so we have a very special bond. I would consider him more of a brother than a teammate and I have 100% trust in him out there on the field.” With Mumper’s TD run the Indians were up 14-0 in the 3rd quarter and the good vibes were felt all over the stadium.

Elco and star running back Jake Williams had plans to ruin the vibes and the night. The Indians defense had been playing well and were putting a 0 on the board to this point. I asked Rohrer what he thought of the defense, and he said, “Defensively, we did a good job of containing #22 on ELCO which was the game plan. He had some explosive runs but a player like that is bound to break a couple. I was proud of some younger guys who stepped up big in our defensive effort.” Number 22 on Elco was Jake Williams and he answered the call when needed. Shortly after Rueben’s run, he burst through the line, broke a couple tackles and 30 yards later it was suddenly 14-7 in the 3rd quarter.

A 4th down stop by Elco to start the 4th gave the Raiders good field position. Few plays later Williams scored from 42 yards out and Elco was down 14-13. The nervousness settled in for the Donegal faithful and Williams would complete silence them with a 60-yard TD run late in the game. The Raiders were up 19-14 and looked like they were going to spoil homecoming night for the Indians.

Donegal would get the ball back and went up tempo and started throwing the ball to try and give themselves a chance. Mumper would make a huge catch on 2nd and long thanks to a well-placed ball by Landen Baughman. A screen pass to Noah Rohrer on 2nd long again would put the Indians within 20 yards of winning the game. A 4th down conversion later the Indians were down inside the 10 but time was not on their side. Elco would force the Indians to go for it on 4th down from the 6-yard line. Coach Risberg called timeout to draw up a play. 

Baughman dropped back, threw to his left towards the back of the end zone where Noah Rohrer snatched the ball out of the air with 15 seconds left and sending the sideline into a frenzy. I asked him about the last play and the emotions, “ I had been playing fullback the whole game but on the last play, during timeout, I asked Coach Risberg if I could move to halfback so that I could run a route. At first, he said no, but then he changed his mind. I told Baughman to give me a chance and he told me it was coming to me. I lined up across from #22 who was playing man coverage. I faked hard inside and cut out and saw the ball floating in front of me. I snatched the ball and ran down the sideline with more excitement than I can put into words. 

The moment was surreal, and I still cannot believe it happened.” They stopped Elco’s last ditch effort, and the celebration was on. The crowd celebrated and the players celebrated a hard-fought win in thrilling fashion.

Elco finishes at home against Berks Catholic in Week 10. Donegal will look to ride the emotional high and momentum into Week 10 when Octorara comes to Mount Joy.

Lancaster Catholic vs Pequea Valley

by Scott Geibel

Lancaster Catholic Keeps Rolling in Homecoming Win

Friday night’s game between Lancaster Catholic and Pequea Valley was filled with big mistakes and big plays as the Crusaders were able to get the win on Homecoming night and improve to 8 and 0 on the season. Both offenses took a while to get into the rhythm of the game and the first few drives for each team were sloppy with missed passes and the run game not being able to get going.

Will Cranford who is generally on the money with his passes was slightly off early with his passing being a little off or too short, so they decided to go with the running game with the wide receivers which was a good adjustment for the offense because once they started using that they were able to get the ball moving down the field. In the first quarter, Lancaster Catholic forced a fumble late and was able to score off it with an 8-yard pass to Cranford’s favorite target Jaevon Parker for the touchdown, but the extra point was no good.

The main positive for Pequea Valley was they had a really good running game with Darrel Beiler leading the pack with multiple runs that went for 20-plus yards which really helped their offense get down the field, but unfortunately, they struggled to get it in the endzone. Lancaster Catholic was able to be effective in the rushing game yet again in the second quarter with Cranford using his legs and the wide receivers being big in the rushing game again and this would lead to a 1-yard rushing touchdown by running back run Christian Fields which would put Lancaster Catholic up 12 to 0 after missing the extra point yet again.

Payton Temple and the Braves were able to get some momentum as Darrel Beiler continued to be a workhorse and they were able to get to the Lancaster Catholic 10 to hopefully get a touchdown to cut the lead in half, but Peyton Temple would step back and throw in an interception in the endzone, and Lancaster Catholic was able to return mid-field which set up the offense nicely. Directly after the interception, Will Cranford threw a short pass to RJ Gonzalez, which he took 51-yards to the house, and after kicking the extra point Lancaster Catholic would go up 19 to 0.

The Braves had only a minute left in the second quarter, and they kept with the run game which was effective they were able to get down to the 5-yard line to hopefully get some points on the board, but Lancaster Catholic had other plans as they forced a fumble and kneeled down to run out the clock and end the first half.

The passing game was much improved to start the second half with Will Cranford coming out swinging which was leading to big plays by RJ Gonzalez and Jaevon Parker. This big start to the second half led to another touchdown with Terrell Crawley rushing for a 2-yard touchdown and Lancaster Catholic goes up 26 to 0. The offense wouldn’t stop there for Lancaster Catholic as they put in the back-ups and freshman Brandon Way rushed for a 45-yard touchdown which increased the lead to 33.

In the second half, the Braves stayed positive, and the rushing game was working for them as it had been the entire game, and this led to a big drive with 6:18 to go in the 4th which ended with an attempted field goal that was unfortunately no good and Lancaster Catholic was able to keep the lead. Lancaster Catholic got the ball back with 3 minutes to go and they were able to run out the clock and get the win.

Interview with Lancaster Catholic coach Chris Maiorino

Me: What impressed you most about tonight’s win?

Coach Chris: “We kept playing and playing and they were able to drive the field which we stopped on our end and the turnovers were huge”

Me: What were your thoughts on Will Cranford’s second half?

Coach Chris: “He was not playing his best and he knew it, but he did what he has done for the past three years and just kept going and gave us his best”

Me: How did you prepare for Pequea Valley?

Coach Chris: “They run a wing offense and our players had to be very disciplined and we taught our guys to be disciplined and weren’t just watching the action from the back-field”

Exeter vs Hempfield

Exeter is legit. Very, very legit. They proved their talents with the likes of Mason Rotelli and Richie Karstien’s legs. Exeter beat Hempfield in a big non-league game 44-22. Although Hempfield did show signs of fight, Exeter’s ground game was just too much for Hempfield to handle.

Exeter opened with 3 points on the opening drive of the game. Hempfield’s offense stumbled mightily in the first half, something that would loom large as the game carried on. Senior Richie Karstien also took a 9 yard scamper to the house with 1:02 left in Q1 to open the scoring for himself and the rest of the Eagles offense(and defense). In just the 2nd quarter both teams turned the ball over at least once. Hempfield turned the ball over 4 times, Exeter once. Against a powerful team like Exeter, that is not a recipe for success. Exeter forced 2 fumbles and picked off junior QB Jackson Landis twice including a 96 yard pick 6 on the last play of the 1st half. On turnovers forced by the defense, the offense also has to convert them into points. And convert they did. Of those 4 Hempfield turnovers, 3 of the 4 resulted in points. And for Hempfield, the one time Exeter did fumble,

Hempfield converted its only points of the 1st half. The literal play after Richie Karstien fumbled at the Exeter 27 yard line, Landis found Andy Garcia for 6 on a screenplay and gave life to the Hempfield faithful. Exeter would have none of it. They pulled away for 20 unanswered points. Richie Karstien would boom in for another TD to make the score 17-7 thanks to an untimely Stephen Katch fumble. Exeter was then again set up with a very short field after Garcia fumbled at the Hempfield 18. This time it was senior QB Mason Rotelli who put the shoulder down and got himself on the score sheet. In just 4 and a half minutes, Exeter scored 14 points. On Hempfield’s final drive of the half, the Knights looked very hot to start. 

Catches were spread out by different Hempfield receivers. Julian Morales, Micah Gates and Andy Garcia all had catches of over 10. With 6 seconds left on 1st and goal, Landis rolled to his left. He tried to run, then saw a receiver downfield. He attempted to throw across his body, but it was tipped, and junior Gavin Reiking introduced himself. He took it 96 yards for the score to end the half with the scoreboard reading 30-7 Exeter.

To start the 3rd, the Knights scored quickly. A 4 play drive capped off with a dart to Julian Morales from 7 yards out. Exeter didn’t care. The Exeter rushing show had just begun. Exeter’s offensive line bullied Hempfield’s stout D-line and it helped Karstien run in for his 3rd of the game. “Our line is a great O-line” Said Karstien, who ran for 4 TDs and 202 yards. “I think they’re the best in 5A” and rightfully so, Exeter is ranked 2nd in the D3 5A rankings. Their week 10 tilt with undefeated MC will decide who wins Section 2. 

Hempfield then again put some big plays together on the ensuing drive, but could not score. Landis was sacked on 4th and 15 that pretty much put it away for good. After Exeter had a 3 and out, Hempfield again kept fighting even though this was over. Hempfield converted a 3rd and 13 on a 25 yard hookup to Andy Garcia, and 3 plays later it set up a Micah Gates 15 yard TD pass. 37-22 after the 2pt conversion also to Gates. 

As the 3rd ended and 4th started, Exeter only needed 4 plays for, you guessed it, Richie Karstien to score a 30 yard TD. Hempfield put together their longest drive of the game but again the offense could not cash in from the 5 yard line. Exeter then burned the last 7:28 off the clock, and headed home with a massive win on the road. Exeter moves to 8-0 and is still undefeated. Hempfield falls to 6-2. They look to finish off with an outright Section 1 crown if they can beat both Cedar Crest and Reading in their final 2 games.

Donegal vs Cocalico

by Matthew Ober


Friday night featured two teams who love to run the ball, eat the clock and take control of the game. One team did all those things better than the other team. Donegal was coming off a win in Week 7 and Cocalico was limping into this week 8 clash after locking horns with Wyomissing. Donegal had won the coin toss and deferred so that Cocalico would start with the ball. The Eagles would run the ball right down the field and score thanks to a Aaryn Longenecker 6 yard run to the pylon. That score put Donegal on their heels, and they would have a rough go of it in the first quarter.

In the second quarter the Indians went for it on fourth down but running back Noah Rohrer came up short. That gave the ball back to the Eagles which started to assert their dominance. Cocalico QB Josh Myer would score on a 1-yard sneak putting the home team up 14-0. Disaster would strike the Indians when a Cocalico defender got loose and blocked a punt. That put the ball on the Donegal 2-yard line and junior running back Sam Steffey would score his first of 3 td’s one play after the blocked punt.

The moment that completely changed the game came on the ensuing kickoff when Cocalico caught Donegal off guard which led to a Cocalico player falling on the ball and giving the Eagles great field position. That drive ended with Steffey scoring for a 2nd time, this time from 3 yards out. The rout was officially on at this point. Teams went to the locker room for halftime with the home team up 26-0.

In the 3rd quarter Steffey would find the end zone for the 3rd time from 18 yards out on a run right up the middle and past Donegal’s defense. Cocalico would put their final mark on this dominant win when Aaryn Longenecker would field a punt and zig zag through the Indians for a 80 yard house call. Donegal would end up getting 2 touchdowns in the 4th quarter to avoid a shutout. The first touchdown was a 14-yard run by backup quarterback Brock Hammaker. The 2nd touchdown was a 61-yard run by Ruben Mumper, who made some defenders miss and outran everyone to the end zone.

Cocalico with the win brings their record to 4-4 overall and look to get above .500 when they head to Berks Catholic in Week 9. Donegal will head back home for the rest of the season and look to finish strong. They welcome Elco Raiders for their homecoming game in Week 9.

Columbia vs Northern Lebanon

by Scott Geibel

Columbia snaps their losing streak with a nail-bitter over Northern Lebanon

Friday night’s game between the Columbia Tide and Northern Lebanon Vikings was full action, with both squads defenses coming to play. The storyline for Columbia was the fact that one of their best wide receivers was in at Quarterback, but early on Domo Diaz-Ellis was effective with running the ball but was unable to get the Tide in the endzone early.

The first half was much of the same for the Vikings with their Quarterback Grady Stichler, but for him, the passing game was working early, and his favorite target Moises Gonzalez was getting a lot of catches and was a big bright spot early. Unfortunately, close to the end of the first half Grady went deep and was intercepted which would be a big theme throughout the game.

Most of the first half was a defensive battle and neither offense could get anything going until a few minutes to go in the first half Domo Diaz-Ellis took it himself for three yards and put up the first points of the game and they would go for two but miss it which would keep Columbia at six. The action didn’t stop there though as Columbia was able to get the ball back with fifty seconds left on, but they fumbled it on their own fifteen giving the Vikings one last chance to score, but they were unable to convert.

The Viking’s offense couldn’t really get the running game going and the passing game was very inconsistent, so they had to punt a lot obviously this didn’t lead to any scoring until the beginning of the second half where mistakes by Columbia led to them getting on the board. It started with Northern Lebanon driving down to the Columbia ten and throwing an interception which could have made them fold and not fight back, but they got back at it and on the second throw of Columbia’s possession after they had gotten the interception Domo Diaz-Ellis threw it right into the hands of Moises Gonzalez who ran it back for a touchdown and after the extra point was no good we suddenly had a tied game on our hands.

The rest of the third quarter was very much like the first half with each team throwing a few more interceptions and the Vikings fumbling the ball along with a lot of three-and-outs and punts which made for no scoring plays. Each team did have some decent drives, but most of the time they would end up going for it on fourth down and not getting it. After being undisciplined and dealing with a lot of flags Columbia was finally able to get it in the endzone with an acrobatic catch for ten yards by Artie Poindexter to go up 12-6 as they yet again could not convert on the extra point.

Up by six with about three minutes to go in the fourth quarter Columbia had to punt and give the Vikings one last shot to tie the game or even win the game. Myles Watson was able to get the Vikings into another scoring opportunity with a huge run, but Columbia forced another fumble to seal this one. Columbia (3-5) snapped their five-game losing streak they look to push for a .500 season when they welcome Kutztown (2-6) this Friday. Northern Lebanon (2-6) will return home looking to break their own losing streak when the welcome Hamburg (6-2).


By Collin Richardson

Hempfield stays unbeaten in Section play with heartfelt win over Wilson

It took only 44 seconds for Cam Jones (189 yards, 2 TDs) to introduce himself. On the 2nd play of the game, he darted 53 yards for the score and made it 7-0. Coach George Eager and the Hempfield offense ate 6 minutes off the clock and 14 plays to put up a field goal in their response drive. “Some teams fold, but these guys never doubted it once.” Stated Eager. After the FG, Hempfield’s defense calmed down and got off the field forcing a 3 and out. Hempfield’s field general Jackson Landis(16-26, 269 yds, TD/INT) put together a promising drive, but an interception after a bobble by Andy Garcia (7 rec,100yds) turned the tides back to the Wilson sideline early in the 2nd quarter.

Wilson then put together an 8-play drive to set up a Ben Rada field goal, but it was wide right. Hempfield’s offense then stalled. Stephen Katch could not find any holes to run through, but that wouldn’t be the case at the end. More on that later. With 5:44 left until half, Tommy Hunsicker found Cam Jones for a big gain of 34 yards to start the drive, and also a hookup to Edison Case for 15 tallies. Hempfield had a goal line stop, and Ben Rada made a 27-yard FG to make the score 10-3 with 1:55 left.

The Wilson defense who also started to settle in again stopped Stephen Katch on the ground, forcing another 3 and out. Wilson’s special teams also partially blocked the punt by Landis, and they started deep in Hempfield territory. Can they cash in some massive points before half? Brian Williams picked off Hunsicker’s first attempted pass and the teams took a 10-3 Wilson lead into the break. To start the 2nd half, Hempfield came out firing. Jackson Landis found Julian Morales for gains of 14 and 10, and then threw a beautiful jump ball to Micah Gates for 58 yards and a score; 10-10.

Buckle in.

Hempfield then kept the momentum on Wilson’s first drive of the 3rd. Although the Bulldogs made it to the 11, Jacob Karkoska blocked the attempted FG to keep the teams knotted at 10. After Hempfield punted the ball back, Cam Jones reminded everyone at John Gurski Stadium what he can do. On the 2nd play of the drive, he ran the pigskin 48 yards to the house; 16-10. In the final 3:18 of the 3rd, Jackson Landis found Micah Gates again for a big gain, this time a mark of 51 on the 2nd play of the drive. On the ground, Grant Hoover (20 rushes, 78 yards) dashed for 19 yards on this drive.

After a failed trick play and a sack by the Wilson defense on 3rd down, Cannon Biscoe made a FG to make the score 16-13 on the first play of the 4th. Wilson got to midfield but was forced to punt. Hempfield ball, and the chance to take the lead or at least tie it with 7:43 left. Hempfield converted 4 3rd downs and an incredible 2nd effort by tight end Aidan Shorter on 4th and 3 to move the chains and keep the drive alive. “Aidan was stopped short.” Said Coach Eager. “Had Aidan not been in the weight room, had he not been so consistent at practice, I don’t know if he’d get that 1st down. That was our guys capping off all the hard work they’ve put in.”

Landis found Garcia on 2 of the 3 3rd downplays for gains of 16 and 17; talk about a connection. Then after Hoover shimmied down to the 2, Stephen Katch barreled his way in for 6, and the lead with 17 seconds left. On Wilson’s last gasp, Hunsicker’s first pass was intercepted by Brian Williams, and Hempfield escaped West Lawn with a score of 20-16. Hempfield is now 6-1 and 4-0 in Section 1 and has a tough Exeter team next week at home. Wilson is 5-2 and 2-1 in Section 1. The Bulldogs will travel to Chryst Field in Millersville for another Section 1 battle when they dance with the Comets of Penn Manor.              


The last time Donegal made the road trip to Robesonia was in the 2012 District playoffs. That game ended in a heartbreaker loss, 25-21, for the Indians and the Scouts sent them home packing that night. Ten years later Donegal gassed up the bus for an hour-long drive to the campus of Conrad Weiser hoping to get rid of that painful loss that coaches, fans and former players still talk about. Both teams headed into Friday night looking for some mojo. Donegal had just finished the gauntlet part of their schedule while Conrad Weiser was coming off a shutout loss to Berks Catholic.

It was a windy fall night, and the Scouts would start off the game with the ball and promptly started moving the ball down the field. They got down to the 36-yard line of Donegal when QB Donovan Gingrich rolled to his right and forced a throw to the sideline, but Linebacker Noah Rohrer was there waiting and made a beautiful catch to pick off Gingrich. Later on, in the 2nd quarter Noah Rohrer would make a great punt return all the way into Conrad Weiser territory and set the offense up on the 33-yard line. Seven plays later Rohrer would punch it in giving the Indians a 7-0 lead. The Scouts would take the ensuing kickoff and nine plays later would score a touchdown thanks to a Gingrich 17-yard TD pass to Senior wide receiver Trey Dianna. Noah Rohrer would go unblocked though on the PAT and batted down the ball before it could even get air. That made the score 7-6 Indians going into the half.

The teams would come out of the locker room and the wind decided it would pick up and it played a factor for sure in the second half. In fact, the wind caused the kickoff to be really short and almost misjudged by Donegal, but the Indians fell on the ball before the Scouts kickoff team could get to it. The second play of the possession which started on their 27-yard line Noah Rohrer ripped off a huge gain, it looked like he would score but got tripped up by a Scout defender and up on the Conrad Weiser 20 yard line. A few run plays and a 4th down conversion later Rohrer would punch it in from 6 yards out for his 2nd TD of the night and giving Donegal a 14-6 lead. Conrad Weiser again would answer Donegal with a TD of their own. This time Dianna took the handoff ran to the outside and raced to the end zone from 29 yards out. The Scouts would line up for 2 in an attempt to tie but the pass attempt failed, and Donegal would maintain their 14-12 lead.

The Indians would deliver a devastating blow to the potential Conrad Weiser comeback when on the very next Indians possession QB Landen Baughman would find his man Zeke Amaro wide open for a 29-yard touchdown pass and catch. That made the score 21-12 and the feeling of victory started to hit the Donegal sideline. The Indians would add another touchdown on a 43-yard scamper by running back Tyler Sload who found the hole and outran the Scouts defense. That would bring the score to 28-12 and the Donegal Indians would run out the clock till it hit all zeroes. Friday night was big for Donegal in many ways. They picked up their second win of the season and much needed momentum heading to the last 3 weeks of the season. However, the win was especially big because the bus ride home to Mount Joy on Friday night looked and felt much different than it did 10 years ago.

Donegal will take this win and look to build on it in week 8 when they head to Cocalico. Conrad Weiser welcomes powerhouse Wyomissing in week 8.

Daniel Boone vs Penn Manor

by Stephin McCloskey

Jonathan Osman and Noah Bolin lead the charge for the Comets in their 33-12 homecoming victory over the Daniel Boone Blazers.

Chryst Field was filled with an energy, and it all started on the first drive of the game when Osman picked off Dean Rotter and took it to the house, putting the Comets up 7-0 right away. Daniel Boone's woes continued when their next 15 play drive ended in a turnover on downs midway through the first quarter. 

Senior Noah Bolin ran the ball from two yards out into the endzone, putting Penn Manor up 13-0 after the PAT was missed. On Daniel Boone's next drive, the Comet defense forced another turnover after Rotter fumbled the ball. Penn Manor had some offensive struggles, which resulted in a 4th and 47. Daniel Boone finally had some success when Rotter kept the ball for himself and scrambled for an eight-yard touchdown, narrowing the deficit to just 7, with a score of 13-6.

Eli Warfel matched what Rotter did on the previous drive and kept the ball to himself for a four-yard score. With just 1:06 left in the half the Comets increased their lead to 19-6. As time was winding down, Clark Wagstaff gave the Comets another turnover with just 55 seconds left on the clock. In an amazing turn of events Jonathan Osman scored again, but this time on the offensive side with a 55-yard touchdown rush. This put Penn Manor up 26-6 going into the half.

Daniel Boone still could not get anything going out of the half and punted to Penn Manor after a three and out. On their first offensive play of the second half Noah Bolin saw the endzone once more, but this time from 61 yards out. With just one quarter remaining the Comets had a commanding lead at 33-6. Dean Rotter did not have any quit in him though and finally found the endzone again with his legs. This was the last score of the game and Penn Manor came away with a 33-12 victory. This improved their record to 4-3 with three weeks left in the season.

After a dominating outing the Comets have what it takes to make it finish out the season 7-3 and get a sectional playoff look.

Interview with Jordan Martin

SM: What was the game plan going into this week, because obviously it worked?

Martin: Honestly the game plan was to go in there and stop their run, we expected a lot of power and counter coming from them offensively. Seemed like they wanted to be an air raid team, and nowhere near what we were expecting.

SM: What do you as an individual do to get the team hyped for routing wins like last night?

Martin: For me personally I am mostly quiet, I like to keep to myself and stay locked in.

SM: It's halfway through the season and the comets have bounced back from a shaky first three weeks. What was the key to that?

Martin: The key to that is our practice and our scout team, our coaches have been bushing us to our limits every single practice and set high expectations on everyone. Scout team has been giving us awesome looks and making us work every single play. 

Donegal vs Wyomissing

by Matthew Ober


Wyomissing came into Mount Joy Friday night as a well-known perennial power in the state. They’ve dominated everybody on their schedule so far with a ground and pound offense and a stifling defense. It ended up being more of the same, but it was a slow start and the Indians made their presence known for the first two quarters. Both teams started off by not doing much and trading punts. Donegal defense was doing a great job reading the plays and making big time tackles. So yes, the Spartans started a little slow but after the game I was able to get in touch with Wyomissing running back Drew Eisenhower and I asked him for his thoughts on the slow start and he said “Our Oline played really well we didn’t get off to the start we wanted but we picked it up and started to find our groove.” Once they found that groove, they were off and running literally. The great offensive line play and that groove led to 5 touchdown runs in the game (2 by Charlie McIntyre, 1 by Matt Kramer, 1 by Chase Eisenhower and 1 by Drew Eisenhower).

Wyomissing struck first late in the first quarter when Penn State commit Jven Williams made a block which allowed running back Drew Eisenhower to go basically untouched into the end zone from 58 yards out. I asked Drew about that first touchdown after the game and he said, “On the first run we had it blocked perfectly the whole oline and our other backs had everyone blocked beautifully and I was able to squeeze through and just hit the hole.” Drew would also later score on a touchdown catch as well when he ran a wheel route and went over the defender to snag the ball.

After Wyomissing scored to make it 7-0, Donegal had their glory moment when they pulled off a perfectly executed fake punt. It was 4th and 5 and it was a direct snap to Noah Rohrer who hustled all the way down to the Wyomissing 1 yard line. Indians would score the very next play on a Rohrer 1 yard plunge. Those couple of plays gave the Indians a taste of success however that success would quickly fade due to the Spartans defense.

The defense which came into the game with shutouts in 3 of the five games flew around to the ball, made big hits and key tackles. Eisenhower had a few of the key defensive moments and I asked him about the defensive performance, he said “Our defense played well but we missed a couple tackles and just need to work at tackling the runner the first time.” They played well indeed shutting down the Indians wing T offense and not letting them sniff the end zone again. Donegal had its positive moments in this one and has finally made it through the gauntlet part of the schedule. They’ll travel to take on Conrad Weiser in Week 7 and look to get win number 2.

Wyomissing continues their unbeaten streak running away with this one 41-7. They’ve got a big section 4 matchup with Cocalico in Week 7. My final question to Eisenhower was about preparing for Cocalico this week and he shared “It’s a big game and their a very good option team so we are lucky we have a longer week this week playing on Saturday, so we are just gonna use that extra day and we are gonna need to have a great week of practice and just be very focused.” 

Pequea Valley vs Columbia

by Scott Giebel

Pequea Valley blanks Columbia to earn first win

The first quarter of Friday’s game was about as poor a start as you could have for both football teams and the opening kickoff set the tone for how the game would go for Columbia as it appeared as though they were going for an onside kick, but that was not the case it was just a muffed kick to start the game. The Braves took over at about midfield, but their offense couldn’t get anything going and promptly went three and out.

Columbia was not lacking in the offense early with Steven Rivas, Daezjon Giles, and Domo Diaz-Ellis coming up with some big plays on the opening drive, but unfortunately, it would not stay that way for the entire game. The offensive line could not protect the quarterback and the special teams could not get anything going on the returns or kickoffs.

Neither team’s offense could get much going and Columbia had a lot of chances to punch it in the endzone, so it wasn’t all bad for their offense, but when it mattered most the Pequea Valley Braves came up on top with the turnover battle forcing four fumbles. One of their turnovers would eventually lead to the first points of the game in the second quarter with Dontae Petershiem scoring a two-yard rushing touchdown to go up seven to nothing.

Columbia was able to stay strong on defense against the pass and they were able to press the quarterback a lot which was positive, but they also struggled to covert on crucial fourth downs when they had the ball. The Braves were able to find some success which led to them kicking a field goal in the third and capping off a Columbia fumble with a thirty-yard rushing touchdown by Orlando Stultzfus.(17-0 Pequea Valley)

One of the big storylines in this game was the quarterback change occurred with Daezjon Giles was replaced by Artie Poindexter. Poindexter who was an all-league wide receiver last season took off for Giles in the fourth quarter.

Critical mistakes were the main reason why Columbia lost the game because when it seemed like they had something good going they would fumble or not be able to convert on fourth down. Poindexter was able to move the Tide offensively notching a big run into Braves territory, but another fumble ended any hopes for a comeback. The game ended with another Pequea Valley interception to make this official 16-0 and the Braves first win of the season. 

(Congrats Coach Mike Choi!)

Interview with coach Mike Choi:

Me: What did you like about your team’s play tonight?

Coach Choi: “I liked that we were fundamentally sound in all three phases of the game we had blocked punts, forced fumbles, and we played defensively sound. I also loved our toughness”.

Me: What did the game planning look like for tonight’s game?

Coach Choi: “We knew they had athletes and so we had to figure out how are we going to match up with these athletes. We watched tape on them, and they were big on throwing the ball, so we wanted to go athlete with athlete and two our guy’s credit we played really hard”.

Me: what one player stood out to you?

Mike Choi: “I think Dontae Petershiem he stepped up and ran really hard and really set the tone which led to Orlando sealing the game”.

Me: Thank you, coach! 

Hamburg vs Lancaster Catholic

by Stephin McCloskey

Jaevon Parker and Elijah Cunningham lead the way for the Lancaster Catholic Crusaders over the Hamburg Hawks putting them at 6-0 on the season.

The Hawks received to start things off, but their initial drive did not last very long, as Jaevon Parker made his first of many big plays by picking off Xander Menapace. Parker finished the drive off catching a 15-yard pass for a score, putting Lancaster Catholic up 7-0. 

On the very next drive Derek Ruiz carried the ball for a total of 55 yards and a score, the PAT is wide leaving it at 7-6. Ruiz had monster consecutive possessions as he picked off Cranford on the next drive.

The run game was working for Hamburg all night because after the crucial takeaway Menapace kept it for himself and scrambled for a four-yard touchdown. 

This put Hamburg up 14-6, after the two-point conversion. Fellow playmaker Elijah Cunningham had an answer for Lancaster Catholic as he punched it from 8 yards out. The Crusaders after the successful two point try tied it up at 14 going into halftime.

Coach Mairono’s squad came out swinging to start the second half when RJ Gonzalez took the opening kickoff 85 yards to the house. On the next defensive stand Jaevon Parker gathered his second interception of the game, which ended in a return for a touchdown. Just like that the Crusaders had a 14-point lead with a score of 28-14.

The second half of the game was a bonafide shootout, because on the very next possession Menapace ran the ball in for a second rushing touchdown, putting the score at 28-21. The lead did not stay small for long, because Elijah Cunningham ran the ball in from the six-yard line, stretching the lead to 35-21. The Crusaders would not score again until one minute left in the game.

Menapace had a knack for the endzone, he rushed the ball for another touchdown, but this time from two yards out. The Crusaders defense could not slow him down and Menapace and company had the ball back again.

Starting off the fourth quarter Hamburg turned the ball over on downs, but got it right back with an interception, putting them at Lancaster Catholics 29-yard line. Derek Ruiz ran the ball into the endzone, tying the game up at 35 with 4:43 left on the clock.

To close out the absolute nail biter, Gavin Tegeaa hit a clutch field goal from 23 yards out, giving the Crusaders the 3-point advantage. With the Hawks driving freshman defensive back Brandon Way Jr. caught Ruiz from behind and stripped the ball and made the game winning fumble recovery.

What a night it was for the Lancaster Catholic Crusaders at 6-0 they take sole possession of first place in Section 5. They travel to a dangerous Annville-Cleona (4-2) team that is coming off a victory over Kutztown. Hamburg (5-1) has to regroup and hope that star tailback Pierce Mason can return from injury, they will travel to Pequea Valley (1-5) who just notched their first win of the season.

Interview with Will Cranford:

SM: You all played a great game; how did the offense get it done tonight?

Cranford: We knew we had something to prove, so intensity was the biggest thing for us. We had to be hype in the locker room and that carried out onto the field

SM: It was a big win on your senior night, how do you plan on celebrating?

Cranford: I think I am just going to go home and honestly watch some Annville film and play some video games. 

Donegal vs Cedar Crest (Field Hockey)

by Matthew Ober


On Monday Night, Cedar Crest hosted their second annual Gray Out game to raise awareness about brain cancer. Donegal was the visitor, and both teams were looking for their first section win of the season. A win for either team would give a boost of confidence going into the final stretch of section play.

Cedar Crest would get the first opportunity of the night when a corner was awarded 3 minutes into the game. Solid defense by Donegal denied the golden opportunity for the Falcons. The Indians would later have 2 straight corners, but Cedar Crest goalie Hailey Newmaster made sure the ball would stay out of the cage. Although both teams had opportunities in the quarter the score remained 0-0.

The first score would come in the second quarter when a corner was awarded to Donegal. A great insert by Makayla Ober led to a pass by Natalie Colwell and the ball found the stick of freshman Kate Page who buried the ball into the lower right corner of the cage to give the Lady Indians a 1-0 lead. Play would continue to be dominated by Donegal with more corners and more shots but the score at the half would remain 1-0.

The second half started, and Donegal continued to put on the pressure and that pressure turned into another opportunity 2 minutes into quarter. A penalty stroke was awarded to Donegal and that put Marie Gehman up against Cedar Crest goalie Hailey Newmaster in a one-on-one situation from 8 yards out. Gehman lifted the ball and into the left side of the cage, celebration would ensue, and Donegal now had a 2-0 lead going into the 4th quarter. Falcons however would not go away as Junior Anna Moyer put a shot on goal that seemed to catch the Donegal defenders off guard. The ball rolled over the line which gave the Falcons momentum and only needing only more goal to tie. The Indians would get more pressure as that goal didn’t seem to worry them, as a result they were awarded a corner. Another insert by Makayla Ober found Marie Gehman who then passed it back to Ober who was waiting at the left post. She lifted it past the goalie’s glove and was met by teammates as that goal would bring the score to 3-1 and giving the Lady Indians a much-needed W.

Berks Catholic vs Donegal

                             BERKS CATHOLIC RALLIES PAST DONEGAL 21-9

On this fall night in late September, the Donegal Indians walked on to the field at Berks Catholic High as underdogs. Everybody was taking the Saints in this one. For about 2 and half quarters it looked like an upset was brewing but eventually Berks Catholic made the big plays (mainly thanks to star running back Josiah Jordan) to make sure that no upset would happen. Homecoming festivities and an awesome rendition of the National anthem got the night started then the ball was kicked, and a game had started.

Minutes into the game Donegal got the break they needed in order to start the upset bid when on a punt the snap went over the punter’s head and rolled to the 8-yard line. Unfortunately, Donegal couldn’t take advantage due to a missed field goal. Plays later Donegal would get the ball right back after intercepting Berks Catholic QB Will Hess along the Donegal sideline. This time the Indians took advantage and got the first points of the game courtesy of Noah Rohrer who booted a 28-yard field goal to start the second quarter. This time the Saints made a big play on a beautiful pass from Will Hess to Wide receiver Jaxon Geddio that went for a big gain into Donegal territory. The Indians would force a fumble one play later and therefore swinging momentum back to the away team. Later on, in the 2nd quarter after a long drive from the Saints into Donegal territory they would cough up the ball again with the Indians pouncing on it again. However, after these 2 miscues the score still remained 3-0 Donegal, the Saints very much in it. Berks Catholic would get one last drive before the half, and they capitalized on it with a 1 yard run by Josiah Jordan making the score 7-3 Saints at the half.

The two teams came out of the locker room and the Saints would get the ball to start but Donegal had other ideas. They stripped the ball from the returner’s hands on the kickoff and recovered their 3rd fumble of the night. Donegal methodically moved the ball down the field and scored after Noah Rohrer spun and pushed his way into the end zone from 5 yards out. This made the score 9-3 Donegal, with that score the stadium fell quiet, and the upset bid was back on at that point. Saints would eventually gain back momentum and get the crowd going after a lengthy drive down the field which ended on another TD run from Josiah Jordan, this one from 4 yards out. The Saints would then line up for a 2-point play and would convert that as well, this would make the score 15-9 Berks Catholic going to the 4th quarter. The first play of 4th would prove to be the game changing play cause Donegal was forced to punt Berks Catholic Josiah Jordan found a lane and went untouched 58 yards into the end zone. That made the score 21-9 Saints. The Indians continued to battle to the end, but the Saints had done enough to survive the upset and secure their first win of the season.

In Week 6, Berks Catholic will welcome Conrad Weiser as the Saints look to make it 2 wins in a row. Donegal will play host to state power Wyomissing in Week 6 as they look to get back in the win column.

Hershey Re-Claims Cocoa Bean Bowl After 7 Point Victory

by Luke Brown

The Cocoa Bean Bowl played its 79th edition Friday night, and the important match-up of cross town foes lived up to its name, as the Trojans of Hershey High School reclaimed the Cocoa Bean, from what was Milton Hershey’s property for last year. After two huge goal line stops in the fourth that stopped Milton Hershey from tying the game, Hershey won the contest, 28-21.

The key to Hershey’s game was confidence, something they felt they didn’t quite have in their past losses on the season. Hershey’s turning point began in week 4, after a double-digit comeback, upset victory over Cedar Cliff. Then, they rolled into their automatic biggest game of the season, with a 1-3 record, and once again underdogs, this time against Milton Hershey, whom they held a 38-36 all time lead against, which is now extended to 39 after tonight’s terrific victory.

It all started with defense for Hershey. Milton Hershey got the ball and began their drive on the twenty-yard line. There, they began multiple sloppy plays, followed by a tipped punt that got lucky and rolled all the way to Hershey’s forty. There, Hershey ran the ball with Angel Cabrera, who pounded the Milton Hershey defense, and ultimately in for the score from the 14-yard line.

Despite their opening drive failures, Milton Hershey decided to continue their rushing offense again. And once again, it was not a successful series of plays, and Milton Hershey was forced to punt again. Hershey took over under Quarterback Daniel Painter, who once again rallied the Trojans through their own territory, to the four-yard line, where they handed off to Angel Cabrera, who took it in for the Hershey score again. Hershey now took a comfortable lead, up 14-0 on the Spartans.

Now, it was time to make changes for Milton Hershey. On their next drive, they threw the ball for 7–10-yard gains to the sidelines, and the heat came on for Milton Hershey. Milton Hershey QB Kenny Emile’s field vision and decision making was on full display, and that came to light on the drive’s final play, where Emile dropped the snap, picked up the ball, and found some holes to run through and then took it himself across the goal line for 6. Milton Hershey’s extra point went through, and the game became more intriguing, 14-7. Hershey’s Daniel Painter followed the Spartan touchdown up by running it himself into the endzone from the twenty-five-yard line. With a few more minutes left, Milton Hershey was determined to reach the double-digit benchmark, and they did with a pass over the middle to Malachi Thomas, and the scoreboard at the historic Hersheypark Stadium read 21-14, and fans and spectators were in for an exciting second half coming up.

After dueling scores, in the third, the fourth quarter was upon us, and the score was 28-21. It became a fast-moving game due to Hershey’s rushing attack, which kept the clock moving in the fourth. With minutes remaining, Hershey was forced to punt, and Milton Hershey had the pressure on, down 7, with a chance to win the Cocoa Bean Bowl, but Hershey, under the defensive lead of Angel Cabrera, stopped

Milton Hershey at the goal line multiple times, and the game was virtually over, with a Hershey’s kneel pending.

Hershey, after a 1-3 start to the year, grabbed a huge win in what is always a huge game. They grabbed their 39th all-time victory in the historic rivalry. Next week, the Trojans will host Red Land. They’ll visit Milton Hershey’s stadium for the Cocoa Bean Bowl next season.

As for Milton Hershey, they’ll be back at home next week for their Bishop McDevitt match-up, who’ve been ripping up opponents this season.

Warwick vs Manheim Township

Manheim Central topples Warwick for the first time since 2018

Behind Brycen Arnold’s legs in the first half and Zac Hahn’s arm in the second, Manheim Central took care of Warwick 47-13. Both juniors for the Barons combined for 5 touchdowns, with Arnold having two scores and Hahn throwing for 3 and running for 1. “Not a single person on this team has ever beaten Warwick” Zac Hahn “We needed to bring more energy in the second half, we were flat for a bit in the first half, we used everything we did throughout the summer for the final two quarters”.

The other junior would start things off with a bang for Manheim Central, when Arnold took the opening handoff from Hahn for an 80-yard touchdown (7-0). Warwick answered right back with veteran signal caller Jack Reed finding Thomas Jeanes for a 7-yard touchdown pass (7-6, PAT blocked). The Warriors had no answer for Arnold in the first two quarters on the ensuing possession he busted through the middled for a 50-yard score (13-6).

Moving into the second Quarter Warwick’s defense stood firm and got the ball back after a missed field goal. Reed and company march on a 10 play 80-yard drive capped off with another touchdown throw to Thomas Jeanes from the 19-yard line (13-13). Right before halftime when it seemed that the visiting team was figuring out how to slow down Arnold, Hahn got moving with his arm. With just a minute before half Hahn found captain Rocco Daugherty all alone in the back of the endzone for a 4 yard strike putting the Barons up 20-13.

The final two quarters were all Manheim Central as their swarming defense harassed Reed sacking him a total of 8 times. Offensively Hahn shook off a blatant facemask to find a streaking Sonny Callahan 55 yards for the score (27-13). Warwick could barely muster a first down in the second half as Hahn would account for two more touchdowns (one throwing, one rushing).

Hahn would hit Bode Sipel for a 26 yard touchdown pass late putting the final nail in the Warwick coffin. Final score from Manheim ended up at 47-13 for the home team, Brycen Arnold finished with 205 yards on the ground, he was more than happy to give the credit somewhere else “We are always excited to play these guys, it was all because of our offensive line they were awesome”.

Warwick drops to 2-3 on the year and will have to regroup quickly as they travel to state power (and the other section favorite) Exeter next Friday. Manheim Central remains undefeated at 5-0 welcomes Muhlenberg next. Coach Hahn was happy to get past this rivalry and proud of how his team finished “we played our style of football, especially in the second half, we did it and acted the right way”. 

Hempfield vs Manheim Township

Hempfield Special Teams show up behind enemy lines to escape 17-14

Both teams coming into Neffsville PA had a lot to play for in this highly anticipated matchup. The Section 1 matchup, the playoff implications, and most importantly, the hatred between these schools that will stand the test of time. To start the game, Hayden Johnson found Landon Kennel for 11 yards. Following that, the Streaks did not gain another first down. Hempfield then started at their own 28.

The drive only took 6 plays, including a beautiful pass across the middle of the field from the junior duo of Jackson Landis and Micah Gates(4 rec, 66 yds) who connected for a 52-yard gain to set up Hempfield at the TWP 10-yard line. After MT toughened up for a stop, Hempfield put up 3 on a 24-yard field goal by Cannon Biscoe. Township then moved into Hempfield territory on the returning drive but an incompletion on 4th down sputtered the Blue Streak offense again.

A missed field goal in an eight-play drive by Biscoe then gave the Streaks the ball right back.

Moving into the 2nd quarter Coach Evans and his troops gained one 1st down but were again forced to punt. “We were focused on stopping the pass,” said defensive coordinator Jay Ridinger. And stop the pass they did, at least in the first half. The Black Knight defense held Johnson to 96 passing yards in the 1st half, including 2 massive interceptions right before halftime.

After the teams traded the ball back and forth, Manheim Township’s offense with 2:01 left finally looked like they found their footing and threatened to score. After gains of 19 and 10 on back-to-back passing plays, a MAJOR interception by Brian Williams deep in Hempfield territory swung this game in the other direction, at least for the moment. Hempfield gave the ball right back to TWP after a 4 and out, all on pass plays, so the drive only shaved off 25 seconds.

Senior Sylas Cox then intercepted a ball that he himself batted down at the line and came down with it himself at the Township 36. As Hempfield quickly got back onto the field, Senior Stephen Katch came onto the field as the QB with 2.8 seconds left. He threw a beautiful ball to a heap of Knights and Streaks in the endzone, and it was Gabe Benjamin who came down with a catch in the endzone. Touchdown Hempfield to take a grand 10-0 lead into the break.

To kick off the 2nd half, Grant Hoover returned the opening kickoff to the house. Ninety. Three. Yards. And a massive 17-0 lead now built by Grant Hoover and the Knights. Township's offense then stalled yet again, not even reaching mid field. Hempfield couldn’t add onto their lead, giving the ball back. Here is where Township made it somewhat interesting. Hayden Johnson and the offense then shaved off 5 and a half minutes using 13 plays to score a Hayden Johnson rushing TD from 2 yards out. Hempfield’s offense then again lost their cool, another 4 and out.

Early in the 4th quarter, Hayden Johnson added to his already impressive 2nd half with a beautiful back shoulder ball to his favorite target Landon Kennel with a 9-yard strike to make it 17-14. Township had all the momentum. “We got away from what we were doing in the 1st half” again said Ridinger. After some missed throws by Landis (12-24, 114 yards) Hempfield again was forced to punt. Other than the TD by Hoover, Hempfield didn’t even sniff the endzone in the 2nd half. Township had 6:23 on the clock and had to travel 85 yards to take the lead. They tried to run the ball and burn the clock down to at least tie it, but Hempfield’s strong defensive line was prepared. Township had to punt with 4:46 left. After some more missed big plays by the Hempfield offense including an overthrown ball to Julian Morales that would’ve just about sealed it, Landis yet again punted, this time down to the MT 2. 3:25 left.

This. Is. It.

The game on the line, and the chance for Township to complete a 17-point comeback. Early in the drive, Johnson found wideout Asher Wolfe twice for big gains of 17 and 21. The Streaks were ROLLING and looking like the team that everyone imagined them to be. Fellow 717 writer Pat Weider said, “the best Township team in a few years.” A timeout was called by MT with 1:17 left, and the ball placed on the Hempfield 19. After a few plays the ball was now on the Hempfield 13, Township was set up to tie it with the FG. The ball was snapped, held, and missed wide left. Insanity in the visiting bleachers and sideline arose. I kid you not, it felt like the ground was shaking. Hempfield hung on, and just stopped the Blue Streaks to win an amazing game 17-14. Hempfield is now 4-1 and is 2-0 in Section 1 in the LL League. They are set to play Penn Manor for their homecoming game on 9/30. And for Manheim Township, they fell to 3-2 and 0-1 in the section.

They have J.P McCaskey at home next week.

Lampeter Strasburg rolls over Donegal 35-0

by Matthew Ober

A new era began on Friday night when Lampeter Strasburg and Donegal met on the gridiron. It was the start of Section 4 play with teams joining from the Berks league. So officially a warm welcome to Wyomissing, Conrad Weiser and Berks Catholic! It was also Military appreciation/USA theme day for Donegal so a cool atmosphere already to go along with the beautiful weather.

LS got the ball first and didn’t do to much on the first drive of the game. Nothing doing was the story of the first quarter for both teams as they traded possessions and came up empty. I talked to Hunter Hildenbrand who plays WR/DB for LS, about the slow start and he said, “We absolutely know we could’ve done better on the offensive side of the ball to start the game, but on the other hand after our first score we just poured it on after that.” And he’s right, after going up 7-0 thanks to LS running back Carson Coleman who scored from 1 yard out after a very efficient drive that started from their own 15-yard line the game was officially in control of the Pioneers.

The Pioneers would quickly add to that after a perfect RPO allowed wideout Hunter Hildenbrand to get behind the defense and score from 49 yards out untouched. Hunter gave me some insight on his touchdown catch, “My reception touchdown I kind of knew it was going to be a touchdown before the play was even ran. The corners and safeties were coming up fast on the run so I knew a little play action would have 6pts on the board.” That combo of QB Trent Wagner and WR Hunter Hildenbrand would make the score 14-0 Pios.

So while the Pioneer offense was rolling the LS defense was shutting down Donegal’s offense and making plays too. A defensive highlight was when Dean Herr picked off a pass from Donegal QB Landen Baughman in the 2nd quarter and almost returned it to the end zone but came up 3 yards short. I asked what Hunter thought about the defense and Hildenbrand praised his teammates and mentioned his defensive coordinator after the game by saying “Defensively, a shut out is a shutout. You love to see zero points on the board at the end of the game and I am sure our defensive coordinator loves to see that also. Garry Morrison does a great job preparing us all week. There are still a couple things that our defense needs to improve on but overall, very happy with this side of the ball the last three weeks.” Shortly after the big defensive play, Carson Coleman would score for the 2nd time of the night and the score would be 21-0 LS going to halftime.

In the 3rd quarter LS would score again led by Hunter Hildenbrand who played Qb on the drive. He scored on a keeper from 5 yards out and that made the score 28-0. He also talked to me about playing QB and what led to that touchdown, “My other one was a quarterback position which I love because I really get to see what the lineman do right there in front of me. They opened up some great holes to run through and eventually get in the end zone again.”

LS would get one more touchdown on the board in the 4th quarter after running back Jonathan Mellinger scored from 2 yards out. That made the final 35-0 in what was a strong showing for the Pioneers. My last question to Hildenbrand after the game was about moving on to next week and he shared “Taking this win and moving on to next week, we must eliminate all mental mistakes and come out quick out the gates. Really looking forward to the Cocalico matchup at home next week.” So Hildenbrand and Lampeter Strasburg will look to keep this winning streak going as Cocalico comes to town in Week 5.

As for Donegal, yes, they did get shutout but they had positive plays on offense and won the turnover battle by forcing 2 fumbles. The Indians will gas up the bus and head to Berks Catholic in Week 5 looking to get back on track.

Hempfield gets back on track with a dominant win over McCaskey

by Collin Richardson

Coming into tonight, Hempfield’s defense had allowed a big play by the opposing team 2 out of the 3 games. Tonight, things started off well when Hempfield took on J.P McCaskey at Hempfield High School. After 2 false starts by the McCaskey offensive line, the ball was placed at the 1. On a 3rd and 7 play, Tornadoes QB Matt Remash threw a seam to Liam Cox to continue the drive. “I was thinking of it in the back of my head, definitely.” Said Hempfield Head Coach George Eager as the opening drive kept moving along. “We know we have to come out of the gate ready to play, whether offensively or defensively.” . His defense did settle down though, even after allowing a 37-yard hookup to Andres Rivera from Remash, who had 71 passing yards just on the opening drive. After McCaskey punted, Hempfield had a 4 and out. Grant Hoover then put himself on the stat sheet defensively. 

On the 2nd play of the McCaskey drive, Grant Hoover jumped the route intended for Rivera, and intercepted it back to the 21. After a Stephen Katch 9-yard gain, Jackson Landis ran the pigskin in from 12 out to score a TD for the Black Knights. On the first play of the next McCaskey drive from the 1-yard line, RB Quimeak Talton had trouble handling the feed from Remash, and the ball fell right into the arms of safety Brian Williams. 14-0 Hempfield, and it would just get worse. As the 1st quarter wrapped up, McCaskey was staring at a 4th and 3. As Hempfield gained the ball back, they only needed 3 plays to score another 6. This time it was “Money Major” Landis on a nice read option play to score from 34 yards out. He has 8 rushing TDs through 4 games. “He’s an incredible kid. He prepares himself well, he can slow down moments in his mind, and that’s what I need in a dual threat QB.“ Said the HC Eager. On McCaskey’s next drive, the first snap sailed over Remash’s head, and into the endzone for another 6. 28-0 and it was not even half. With 10:13 left in the 2Q, J.P put up an 8-play drive, including a 4th down conversion. They had no choice but to punt on a 4th and 10. 

With 7:45 left, Hempfield then worked a 6-play drive and scored again, as if the game wasn’t already out of reach. It was a screen pass to Gabe Benjamin from 7 out. 35 to zilch. McCaskey then had yet another 4 and out. A rough punt set up Hemp at the J.P 23. Now that subs started to trickle in and out, the offense started to become more aggressive. Cody Gehres’s attempted 4th down run was stuffed, and McCaskey took over. McCaskey did not do anything, and at half the score was 35-0. On Hempfield’s opening drive of the 2nd half, Cody Gehres barreled in from 5 yards out for 6 more, and Hempfield’s final points. McCaskey then (with a running clock due to mercy rule) burned about 8 minutes off the clock and had yet another turnover on downs. On the first play of the 4th quarter, Michi WInters picked off Cody Gehres for McCaskey’s first (and last) points. Hempfield has thrown a pick 6 in all 4 of their games. The teams then traded the ball back and forth. The only thing worth circling in the last 11:20 of the game is 

Hempfield’s Elijah Walls fumble with 3:23 left. Did not amount to anything, but the only trade of the football that was not by punt. As the clock drained to 0:00, Hempfield won 42-7. “I don’t think we will be seeing the same offensive miscues that were made tonight” again, said Eager, looking forward to next week's matchup with longtime rival Manheim Township. Eager is also a Township Grad. “It feels good, we’ll enjoy it tonight, but we have our hands full for next week.” Hempfield is now 3-1, and 1-0 in section. McCaskey is a mirror to Hempfield’s record. 1-3, and 0-1 in league play. Hempfield’s heavyweight bout with Manheim Township will go a long way in finding who wins the Section 1 championship. Stay tuned. I (Collin Richardson) will be in Neffsville for that game as well.a                  

WEEK 5 Players To Watch

by Aaron Frederick

Josh Rudy QB Elizabethtown

The Elizabethtown Bears are on a roll coming into week 5 of the season and Rudy has been a huge part of their undefeated 4-0 record. Rudy is leading this talent rich offense on a path towards a section 3 title as it seems no one can really find an answer on how to stop them defensively. They are coming off a 34-17 victory over Red Lion in which Rudy went 10 for 16 for 292 yards passing with a touchdown. Coach Stokes has this team and its offense humming with a lot of playmakers that have had big impacts so far this season. They are heading to Twin Valley this week in a big section game so look for Rudy and his several offensive weapons to come ready to play as the hunt for a section 3 title has begun.

Jake Williams RB ELCO

In week 4 the ELCO Raiders had arguably the best game of the week against Conrad Weiser which ended up in a nail-biting 22-21 loss to the Scouts. The Raiders leaned heavily on the impressive ball carrying of Williams who had 26 carries for 199 yards and 2 touchdowns. Giving a player that many carries with that much success shows me that they trust him and believe in his ability to shed tacklers and push the ball downfield. This was a surprising loss for the Raiders, and it will not get any easier going up against the powerhouse of Wyomissing this week. I fully expect the Raiders to utilize Williams in a big way this week in what may be one of the most intriguing matchups of the season.

Hayden Johnson QB Manheim Township

The Blue Streaks have one heck of a player taking the snaps in Hayden Johnson starting the season off with a 3-1 record with their only loss being to Cumberland Valley in a game that could have gone either way. In week 4 Manheim Township beat the Spring Ford Rams in a very close 17-14 battle with Johnson going 24 of 33 for 281 yards 2 touchdowns and one interception. Coach Evans and Johnson know they have a MASSIVE RIVALRY GAME this week taking on the Hempfield Black Knights who are also 3-1 so this could very well be the game of the year. This rivalry goes back a long time and is very intense, so I am expecting a shootout with Johnson being one of the biggest factors of this Section 1 showdown. 


Cedar Crest vs Penn Manor

by Stephin McCloskey

Cedar Crest visited Penn Manor Friday night, where it took both teams a few possessions to get started, but when the cogs were turning it was a great defensive battle. Coach Brubaker’s defense lead the charge and the Comets came out on top 14-9. Both teams go to 2-2 overall, but it was the home who held strong.

The momentum shifted in favor of the Comets when Jay Huber was intercepted by Kyle Furnier. In the nine-play drive following the interception Eli Warfel connected with Dhamir Wesley for a touchdown putting Penn Manor up 7-0. Cedar Crest had one more possession but couldn't get anything to go and the half ended with a Sebastian Rivera sack.

To start off the second half Penn Manor received the ball, but an errand snap was sent into the endzone, and a safety ensued (7-2). Cedar Crest fumbled on the ensuing free kick off they and Penn Manor regained possession. Warfel connected with a receiver for 34 yards, but on the very next play the Comets fumbled, and the Falcons had the momentum right back. They could not do anything and punted the ball after a long drive. 

At the start of the fourth quarter Huber was picked off again, and Penn Manor took possession. The drive ended in a four-yard Warfel rush into the endzone. The Comets went up 14-2 at that point. On the very next drive Jay Huber connected with Izaiah Gonzalez for a 65-yard touchdown getting the Falcons within one score 14-9.

Interview with Jordan Martin:

SM: What was going through your head when the three or four consecutive turnovers between the two teams occurred?

Jordan Martin: I was just trying to stay focused on the game and not think negatively and keep the energy up on the sidelines and in the huddle. Our defense was playing amazing last night and shutting down the passing game.

SM: How did the team respond to that questionable onside kick call at the end of the fourth quarter?

Jordan Martin: It was definitely questionable, but we had no other opinion but to go on offense. The very next play they get called for a holding call, which shows how strong we are on defense and how hard we were coming at them even though are backs were against the wall with two minutes left in the game.

SM: Coming off a couple of losses how does it feel to get back into the win column?

Jordan Martin: It felt very good to get a win last night, especially against Cedar Crest and it being our first sectional game. We want to build off of this win and continue with momentum as we hit a strong section one.

WEEK 4 Players To Watch

by Aaron Frederick

Pierce Mason RB Hamburg

The Hamburg Hawks (3-0) are off to a great start in this newly configured LL Berks league and figure to be section contenders as the season goes on. Mason was completely UNSTOPPABLE on the ground with 19 carries for 292 yards and 4 touchdowns which tied the Hamburg school record. The stats in this league are getting more and more ridiculous throughout the season and it is clear that Mason is going to be a tough player to contain with 11 total touchdowns through just three games. Hamburg is facing off against Annville- Cleona this week who is 2-1 coming off a big win but I expect Mason to make a lot of big plays and put up some more insane stats.

Jack Reed QB Warwick

It has been a tough start for Warwick (1-2) this season, but Reed and the Warriors seem to be better than their current record. Reed had a very good night in their week 3 win over Cedar Crest who was undefeated going into the game. His total passing stats were 23 of 31 for 259 yards and 3 touchdowns with no interceptions. This stat line jumped out at me because you don’t typically see a young quarterback throwing 31 times without throwing a single interception and winning the game too often at this level. I think this shows that Coach Bob Locker and his staff have faith in Reed to go win big games using his gifted arm and will continue to do so against Conestoga Valley this week.

Nick Tran RB Conestoga Valley

One of the best and most surprising games of week 3 was Conestoga Valley against Garden Spot in a thriller that ended with the Buckskins winning 41-35 in overtime. This win was huge for CV and Nick Tran absolutely gashed the Spartans going 24 carries for 270 yards and 3 touchdowns which again is just an absurd stat line. This win brings the Buckskins to 2-1 on the season and it seems as if they have found their key to success by running the football with Tran until the opposing team gives up. Coach Jon Scepanski has the Buckskins on a roll, and I do believe they have one of the best games to watch coming up this week against the hungry Warwick Warriors.

Hempfield vs Central York

by Collin Richardson

Georgelis Law Firm Stadium was a crowded stadium in Landisville PA on Friday September 9th. Even so packed it was the “Game of the Week” for CBS21, a local news channel in Central PA. Expecting a very tight game, Hempfield and Central York kicked off on the gridiron. Central York received the ball 1st. Junior RB Juelz Goff took the first play from scrimmage 80 yards to the house. 80. Yards. Hempfield started out with another rough defensive first drive, something that has been a struggle in 2 out of 3 games, allowing a big play by the opposition to start the game.

On Hempfield’s 1st drive, the offense shaved 8 minutes off the clock. Grant Hoover had a 20-yard gain to set them up at the 2. Despite being set back 3 yards on the next play, Grant Hoover pummeled in from 5 yards out to tie it. CY then had a quick 4 and out, and Hempfield looked to take the lead. Hempfield gained one first down on the drive, a 5 yard out route from Jackson Landis to Gabe Benjamin.

A sack by Collin Glassmyer on 2nd down put Hempfield in a 3rd and long they could not recover from. 3 minutes into the 2nd CY Panthers put together an 8-play drive with another TD bolt for Goff, who has an offer from Old Dominion in his back pocket. Hempfield’s defense had a chance to get off the field with a 3rd and 11, but a pass from Nasir Still to Parker Hines for a 16-yard gain kept the drive alive. The XP was bobbled, so the scoreboard read CY 13, and Hempfield with 7.

Hempfield then had another drive gaining only one first down then being forced to punt. The first down came on Landis’s pitch and catch to senior Julian Morales (4 recs, 37 yards) for 12 marks. Central York also had to punt, failing to extend their lead before the half. Stephen Katch then threw the ball on a hail mary to Micah Gates, but it fell incomplete and both teams headed to the locker room with the score reading Central York with 13 off two touchdowns by Juelz Goff, and Hempfield with 7 on a Grant Hoover TD. As the 2nd half started, Hempfield needed 6 to start the half to stay in this game. Hempfield for the third time tonight had a 1 first down drive, stalling on offense against a good Central York defense that showed many different defensive packages.

Hempfield only gained 8 yards on this drive on the ground. The Panthers held Grant Hoover to 45 yards total in this game. Hempfield’s defense kept them in this game though, forcing a turnover on downs. Penalties then screwed up the next Black Knight offensive drive, unable to reach the 1st down marker. CY then gave the ball right back on a quick 4 and out. As the 3rd quarter wrapped up, nobody scored. 13-7 heading into the final frame. CY then marched down the field highlighted by a 18 yard rush by Nigier Dewitt. He also had a gain of 13, 3 plays later.

He finished the night with 59 yards on 7 carries. Matthew Parker then drilled a 31-yard field goal to make the game a two-score game. 16-7 with 8:09 left. Can Hempfield have another showing of magic in Landisville? The drive looked very, very promising to at least put Hempfield within 3. Jackson Landis then threw an interception to Saxton Suchanic. He ran it back for 6; CY up 16-7 with 4:32 left. That play just about blew all the air and momentum out of the Hempfield’s sideline and bleachers. Now it was still a two-score game, but Hempfield would need everything to go right. Hempfield did score a TD, a 1-yard rush by Landis, but the 2-point attempt to Aidan Shorter failed, so this was just as good as over. The onside went out of bounds, and Juelz Goff put this away on the first play with a 58-yard TD, his 3rd and final of the day.

Hempfield did not totally give in, and scored 1 more time, which had some upside, at least in my eyes. It was a 1 yard run by Stephen Katch who is still coming back from injury and will (hopefully) become a bigger piece of the offense when he is 100%. Nasir Still then took 2 knees, and Central York rode back home high on a 30-20 win against a powerful Hempfield team. Both teams are now 2-1.

Donegal vs Palmyra

by Matthew Ober

Noah Rohrer’s performance leads Donegal to win #1 over Palmyra 30-13

Donegal came into the game against Palmyra Friday night looking for their first win. They needed it especially with the grueling Section 4 schedule coming up. And Noah Rohrer made sure that the team in all white uniforms would walk out of Buck Swank Stadium with that win.

Donegal started by winning the coin toss (for the 1st time this season) and the Indians defense stopped the Cougars offense quickly thanks to timely tackles by linebacker Noah Rohrer and corner Landon Robertson. The Indians first drive started with 2 straight passes to Noah Rohrer and the tone was set. A solid 9 yard run by Rohrer was followed up by fellow running back Cooper Miller who hit the hole, bounced outside, and stiffed armed his way into the end zone from 31 yards out.

Palmyra offense stalled again thanks to a big tackle for a loss by Rohrer that came on 1st down. Palmyra punted the ball away and, on the 12th play of the drive for the Indians they decided to go for it on 4th down, but the Palmyra defense stood tall and stuffed Rohrer on the 1 yard line. Donegal defense responded by forcing a 3 and out and forcing a Palmyra punt which then gave the Donegal offense beautiful field position. Donegal would drive right down the field finishing with another TD on the ground. That brought the score to 14-0 early in the second quarter.

Palmyra had finally got a nice drive going into Donegal territory when safety Landen Baughman snatched the ball out of a Cougar wide receivers’ hand. Palmyra would cause Noah Rohrer to fumble the ball a couple plays later but Donegal safety Brock Hammaker avenged the miscue by intercepting Palmyra QB Ethan Lodish. The halftime score was 14-0 and Donegal would receive the kickoff to start the 3rd quarter. Palmyra got a defensive stop and got great field position because of that. Donegal’s lead would be cut in half when Palmyra running back Juan Figureoa scored from 12 yards out. Noah Rohrer would add to his resume later in the 3rd quarter by running in from 7 yards out. The score would be 21-7 after Rohrer drilled his 3rd made extra point of the game.

On the ensuing kickoff however Palmyra return man Kadan Readinger would field the kick from his 10-yard line and literally follow his blockers all the way for 90 yards and into the end zone. The big play would make the score 21-13 giving Palmyra much needed momentum. Donegal would swing the momentum back in their favor thanks to a long drive capped by a field goal by yes Noah Rohrer. The field goal would make the score 24-13 but Rohrer had one last play to make before the game was over.

2 plays later after that field goal Noah Rohrer would find the ball in his hands again from his linebacker spot and went pretty much untouched from 31 yards out to the house. That one last play sealed the game by bringing the score to 30-13. The house calls also put the exclamation point on the stat sheet that Rohrer filled up on Friday night. Noah had a made field goal, made 3 extra points, had a rushing TD, tackles on defense and of course the pick six to seal the Indians first win of the season. Rohrer and the Indians squad will welcome LS to Mount Joy on Friday night as section play gets underway.

Octorara at Lancaster Catholic

by Scott Giebel

Octorara Outmatched in Lancaster Catholics Dominating Win

Friday night’s game which featured Lancaster Catholic, and Octorara was about as lopsided as you can get with the Crusader’s up-tempo offense leading the way in this victory. and Octorara’s offense could not muster anything all night as Lancaster Catholic’s defense was lights out.

The game started with Octorara going three and out. The first punt of the game is where things started to go downhill for Octorara as the kick was very short and set up the Crusaders with a nice very nice field position.

Lancaster Catholic came out guns blazing with this good field position and Will Cranford threw a 39-yard bomb to Jaevon Parker who would go on to have a monster game with 3 receptions for 134 yards. After a missed extra point, the Crusaders picked off quarterback Braeden Wood and Cranford and company were in business.

Turnovers would be big for Lancaster Catholic as Elijah Cunningham ran for 27 yards and a touchdown right after the turnover. Elijah Cunningham came up huge once again with a forced fumble and recovery halfway through the first quarter. The Crusaders would make quick work of the turnover with a Will Crawley 5-yard rushing touchdown. (21-0)

Colton Focht was a bright spot for the Braves making plays on both sides of the football. Will Cranford ended the game with two hundred and four yards while also adding three total touchdowns.

Will Cranford threw a 70-yard bomb to his favorite target Jaevon Parker for the touchdown and end first quarter would end with the Crusaders up 28-0. As the second quarter started it was much of the same for Lancaster Catholic as RJ Gonzalez became big in the passing game which set up a thirty-one-yard rushing touchdown for Will Cranford and the Crusaders went up thirty-five to nothing.

RJ Gonzalez caught a twelve-yard touchdown pass to give the Crusaders a comfortable lead at 41-0. Octorara would finally find the endzone later in the game with QB Braeden Wood throwing a thirty-six-yard bomb to Chandler Stoltzfus and this would then lead to Austin Kurtz catching a five-yard touchdown. (41-7)

Overall, turnovers won the day for Lancaster Catholic (3-0) as they were able to force three, and not only did, they force them, but they then scored directly after. Coach Mairono’s squad has a big matchup in Section 5 next week when they travel to Columbia (2-1).

Elco at Columbia

by Stephin McCloskey

Columbia took on Eastern Lebanon County on Friday night, falling to 2-1 in the process. The ELCO Raiders' offense was too much for the Columbia Crimson Tides defense, with Jake Williams leading the charge for the Raiders.

The Raiders received the ball to start the game and Jake Williams took the opening kickoff 95 yards to the house, and from then on it was his game. The Crimson Tide's first possession started off rocky when Daezjon Giles was sacked for a five-yard loss. They went on to punt after a three and out.

On ELCOs first drive of the game they took command of the game through time of possession. They ran 15 plays, of which only three were passing plays. Although they took control and milked the clock the drive came up empty with a Landon Gettle missed field goal from 44 yards out. Columbia's second possession mirrored the first and they went three and out to punt the ball.

At the start of the second quarter Giles threw an interception to Aidon Fritsch which gave the Raiders momentum after two empty drives. Jake Williams took control on the next drive rushing for 55 yards and a touchdown, putting the Raiders up 14-0 right before the half.

Columbia's first possession out of the half resulted in a punt, which gave ELCO possession at their own 28-yard line. After a couple short gains Williams racked up his third touchdown of the game while running for 60 yards. This put the Raiders up 21-0.

After two consecutive turnover on downs, the Crimson Tide gained some traction when Giles connected with Domo Diaz Ellis for a 22 yard touchdown. This shortened the lead to 21-6. On Columbias next possession the Domo and Daezjon connection happened once more, but this time for 40 yards making the score 21-12. The Crimson Tide had one more chance and it looked like a comeback could have been in order, but when Giles hit Jayden Boone for 41 yards in two plays, Boone could not get out of bounds and the final whistle blew.

The veer offense and Jake Williams were too much to handle for The Columbia Crimson Tide, who fell to 2-1, meanwhile the ELCO raiders improved to 3-0 ahead of their game next week against Conrad Weiser in a conference matchup.

Interview with Daezjon Giles

SM: ELCO was running the veer offense last night, with only three pass attempts in the first half, how did time of possession affect the game?

Giles: They ran the ball a lot and used as much time as they wanted coming out of the huddle. They were running their plays efficiently and consistently.

SM: How is Columbia going to bounce back next week?

Giles: This week we just gotta come to practice and work 10 times harder than what we do and get ready for our next opponent.

SM: What are you most looking forward to going into next week?

Giles: I’m looking forward to seeing how versatile Catholic will be and we can get to playing defense like what we have in the first two games of the season.a 

Manheim Twp vs Harrisburg

by Carl Frederick

Manheim Township stuns state power Harrisburg in the final seconds

Hayden Johnson found fellow Junior Asher Wolfe from the 4-yard line with 4 seconds left to give Manheim Township the thrilling victory. In a game with two teams that appear to heavy district 3 favorites, the Blue Streaks (2-1) shocked the Cougars in Severance Field Saturday afternoon. Johnson had two total touchdowns was thankful they could finish off the game in style “we did not have come to that position, we had this game on our list from the beginning of the year and it feels good to come out on top”.

Manheim Township kicked things marching right down the field on their opening drive which included Johnson finding Landon Kennell to convert a 4th and long. Sophomore Declan Clancy finished off the nearly 10-minute drive to start the game with a 1-yard touchdown run. Harrisburg answered on their following possession, nearly scoring on their first play from scrimmage but the Mahkai Hopkins long run was called back on a holding penalty. It did not phase the Cougars as dynamic Sophomore Quarterback finish things off with a 1-yard touchdown run. The PAT was no good leaving the Blue Streaks up 7-6.

The second quarter saw another Harrisburg big play called back due to a penalty (an unfortunate recurring them) and Manheim Township would hold defensively. Coach Evans squad would bend but not break defensively, another Junior Quin Arnold would nail a 34-yard field goal and Manheim Township clung to a 10-6 halftime lead.

The third quarter saw both teams trade turnovers, first a Hopkins fumble gave the Blue Streaks prime real estate to increase their lead, but Johnson was intercepted near the goal line giving the ball right back. Coach Yoder’s defense held and after an Eli Rodriguez blocked pooch punt had Township great field position. This time they cashed in with Johnson scrambling in from the 6 on third and goal (17-6 Manheim Township).

Harrisburg showed why they are one of the top ranked teams in the state as they took their next possession all the way to paydirt capped off with Shawn Lee’s second rushing touchdown (17-14). Another Junior Nicholas Good had a monster performance on all three phases, nearly took the ensuing kickoff the distance but was tracked down at the Cougars 33. Harrisburg’s defense would hold and as we moved into the fourth quarter appeared ready to take this one over.

All-League candidate Makhai Hopkins powered his way in for a 5-yard touchdown and Harrisburg held strong leading 20-17. The Cougars defense survived another blocked pooch punt as they stripped Johnson on a QB draw inside the 20 to recover his fumble. After a quick three and out, Manheim Township had possession at the Harrisburg 38 with a little over two minutes to play.

This time Johnson and company finished things off, after two completions to Nick Good and Landon Kennel, Hayden went through his reads to find Asher Wolfe open for the game winning touchdown (24-20). Harrisburg would have one last but could not find the endzone on their last second hail mary attempt. Manheim Township pulled off a thrilling stunner and Coach Evans was more than happy to continue the Blue Streaks redemption tour “Young team coming off age” Coach Evans said, “The Retribution tour continues!”

Manheim Township will have one more battle on their hand before league play begins as they travel to YAIAA power Spring Ford next Friday. Harrisburg (1-1) will travel to Carlisle (2-1) who is coming off a tough loss to York. 

McCaskey vs Elizabethtown

by Jeremiah Miller

McCaskey and Elizabethtown met at the Barney Ewell Sports Complex (McCaskey’s home turf) on Friday evening with both football teams riding high from winning their first contests of the season. Elizabethtown carried victory into another week with a 50-21 win over the Red Tornado.

McCaskey won the coin toss and Elizabethtown would receive. E-town began the game with a failed trick play, in which QB Josh Rudy made an incomplete pass to Brady Breault. However, nine plays later Rudy threw to Braden Cummings from the 26-yard line for the first touchdown of the game. The Bears continued to dominate the first quarter with a series of fifteen plays culminating in Hayden Haver’s leap into the end zone, which brought the score to 14-0.

In the second quarter, the Red Tornado stole a little thunder when QB Matthew Remash made a pass to Quimeak Talton, who gained 30 yards for the Tornado, and soon thereafter Joshua Morales-Mixon cut the Bears lead in half scoring a 3-yard touchdown.

Elizabethtown’s response was strong a swift. Cummings claimed another touchdown, catching a scoring pass from 25 yards away, skillfully prepared by Rudy’s 46-yard throw to Breault.

Elizabethtown’s third quarter kickoff was returned to the 34-yard line by Red Tornado Michi Winters. The Bears resisted by tackling Remash behind the line scrimmage, which forced a punt. Soon the passing and running work of Rudy and Cummings gained 42 yards, and Lentz ran it in from 21 yards for another score.

Next came perhaps the most exciting moment in the game, and the losing team was responsible: McCaskey’s Talton received a Elizabethtown’s kick and ran 73 yards for the touchdown, bringing the score to 14-28.

McCaskey’s hopes of a comeback were fleeting. A touchdown was scored late in the evening by Red Tornado Andres Rivera, but McCaskey was unable to surmount the third and fourth quarter gains made by the legwork of the Bears’ Logan Lentz, and Rudy’s touchdown passes to Cummings and Elijah Macfarlane.

Next Friday, the Bears (2-0) will travel to Hersheypark Stadium to go up against Lower Dauphin (1-1). McCaskey remains in their Barney Ewell Sports Complex to face off with Cedar Cliff.

Week 3 Players to Watch

by Aaron Frederick

Logan Lentz RB Elizabethtown

If you are looking for some ridiculous stats, look no further than Logan Lentz for the Elizabethtown Bears. Lentz totaled up 24 carries for 268 yards and 3 touchdowns in their victory over McCaskey on Friday night. The Bears had a very good night being led by Coach Keith Stokes and that high powered offense. Any time you have both your quarterback and running back going over 200 plus yards in the same night you are going to be a successful team. Coach Stokes and the Bears will face off against Lower Dauphin (shout out to head coach Borreli former teammate of mine) this Friday and I would look for Lentz to build off of his great week 2 performance against a well-coached Lower Dauphin team coming off a win.

Trenton Wagner QB Lampeter Strasburg

Week two was full of surprises, one being the Pioneers shutting out the Penn Manor Comets 35-0 in a backyard rivalry. Wagner was extremely efficient going 12-15 for 175 yards and 3 passing touchdowns. Coming off a tough loss to Solanco in week one LS looked like they were on a mission against the Comets. Coach Ridenour and the Pioneers may be a force to be reckon with in Section 4 this year with the playmakers they have in this offense. Wagner is very poised and his fellow teammates Carson Coleman and Jackson Heeter are very good options at his disposal. LS takes on Kennard Dale this week who has struggled defensively so far this year so a big night may be in store for the Pioneers.

Nick Good RB Manheim Township

The Blue Streaks were coming off a very close loss to a good program in Cumberland Valley in week one, but they silenced the doubters in a 40-0 routing of Dallastown. Good was a HUGE factor in this win with 3 touchdowns in the first half alone. Two of his scores were receiving which goes to show his versatile play making ability in this offense. Good also is a very skilled punt returner and had two good returns in this game getting his overall yardage over 200 for the night. Manheim Township will go on the road this week against a statewide powerhouse in Harrisburg so this will be a huge challenge, but I expect Good to have some very impactful plays in this battle.

York Suburban vs Donegal

By Matthew Ober


The Trojans defense came into Mount Joy ready to go Friday night because three plays into the game they brought pressure and forced an errant pass by Donegal’s QB Landen Baughman. Linebacker Dakota Shue snagged the wobbly pass out of the air and walked into the end zone from 44 yards out.

Donegal would answer the early touchdown with a productive 12 play drive in the second quarter and finished off by Senior running back Noah Rohrer who zigged and zagged his way to paydirt from 11 yards out.

The running back duo of Noah Rohrer and Jon Holmes would add touchdown runs later in the game to bring the final score for Donegal to 18. While those two guys had very solid performances that night, there was one guy that really stole the show at Donegal Athletic Complex Friday night.

Ladies and gentlemen get yourselves familiar with Number 2 from York Suburban- Mikey Bentivegna! He put on a show and it was something to watch. He spun, juked, and honestly just ran all over the turf. The stats in the end paint the whole picture of the night the young man had. First he accounted for over half of the total yards that York Suburban put up on offense. He had 4 total touchdowns ( 3 run, 1 pass). 2 of Mikey’s touchdown runs went for 40+ yards where he bobbed and

weaved through the arms of Donegal defenders. 

The one passing touchdown he had was on a trick play that caught Donegal off guard. And these numbers don’t even include the 2 60 yard plus runs for potential TDs called back due to penalties. So while the defense of York Suburban set the tone, Mikey Bentivegna stepped on the field, got the ball and ran wild.

Donegal falls to 0-2 but travel to Palmyra Friday night searching for their first win. York Suburban looks to keep the momentum going into week 3 as they face off against York Catholic.

Hempfield vs York

By Collin Richardson

Hempfield and York had a finish only Hollywood could explain.

Landis orchestrated a 6 minute drive after starting on Hempfield’s own 8. Landis had 28 yards through the air this drive. Landis then ran for a TD to make it 6-0 with 4:21 left in the 1st quarter. In York High’s response drive, Jaheim White could not receive the designed pitch play, and Deyvid Palepale scooped it up. As Hempfield reached 3rd and goal on a quick drive, Landis attempted to find Micah Gates for 6. But sophomore David Warde jumped the route and took it 95 yards back for a TD for the Bearcats.

The duo of Landis and Grant Hoover were responsible for every play on the next drive. And to put the cherry on top, Landis dumped off a pass to Grant Hoover for a 12 yard TD score. “Major” Landis tallied 49 yards, including a 14 yard strike to Andy Garcia. Now in a 13-6 deficit, Coach Russ Stoner and his troops needed a response before half. With 3:51 left in the half, his son, York’s QB, Sam Stoner got his guys in the end zone in 9 plays, with a 25 yard dart to David Warde, Warde’s 2nd of the day. Hempfield kneeled the first play and took a 1 point lead to halftime.

As the 2nd half started, Landis again stayed cool under pressure. At one point in this drive he ran 3 plays straight tallying 17 yards. “Our whole QB room is a great group of guys, from freshman to senior class.” Said Eager. To score Hempfield’s 3rd TD, Grant Hoover bounced out of a clogged line and dashed 10 yards to score and make the score 20-12 Hempfield with 8:19 left in Q3. Responding well to the lead extension, Jaheim White and friends pounced in for a TD, and got the 2 pt. to tie. He had a 4 yard touchdown scamper to tie it with 4:45 left. Hempfield then had a quick 3 and out. In response, the Bearcats took their first lead with 53 ticks left in the 3rd. In this drive Sam Stoner ran for a massive 3rd and 18 on a broken play. 4 plays later he threw to David Warde for his 2nd TD strike to him and David Warde’s 3rd TD of the game. On the last play of the 3rd, Hempfield started at their 44. To end the quarter, Hoover shimmied through for a 46 yard gain to bring Hempfield on the doorstep as time expired in the 3rd.

Landis bounced in from a yard out to make it 27-26 with 11:56 left to start the 4th. York then had a minute of possession, and turned the ball over on downs. Hempfield then put together an almost 6 minute drive. After a few timeouts by Hempfield, Eager was then set up with a tough decision; either punt the ball back, or go for the 1st down with 3:51 to go. Landis was stuffed on the rushing attempt; turnover on downs. What happened next took the air out of the Hempfield sidelines and bleachers. Sam Stoner hit Jaheim White for 77 yards and the lead on the 1st play. Wow. 3:31 to go. 32-27. What does Eager have in mind? Hempfield couldn’t have had a worse time for a turnover on downs. The tipped pass to Garcia fell incomplete, and York took over with the opportunity looking positive. York High handed the ball 3 times to Jaheim White, and Hempfield was prepared. Hempfield got the ball back with exactly 51 seconds until this game was final. Hempfield started with a big acrobatic catch by Micah Gates for a gain of 36, and breathed life back into the Hempfield faithful. “Micah looked at me at the beginning of the drive, and looked me in the eyes and told me ‘we got this.’” Eager stated. A few plays later, with 19 seconds left, Micah Gates set out on a beautiful post fade, and Landis hit him for a 29 yard score with 12 seconds to go. Georgelis Law Firm Stadium EXPLODED. On the final attempted lateral play York High failed, and Hempfield somehow, someway won an incredible game against a great York High Bearcat team.

Penn Manor vs LS

By Stephin McCloskey

An explosive offense led by Trent Wagner and Carson Coleman and a stifling Lampeter-Strasburg defense helped the Pioneers shutout the Penn Manor Comets 35-0.

Penn Manor's first possession had some momentum, but when Noah Bolin was tackled in the backfield by Harry Wolgemuth the Comets were forced to punt, which ended in a block. The blocked punt gave L.S. outstanding field position. Wagner made a pass to Jackson Heeter for a 12 yard touchdown pass, which gave the Pioneers a 7-0 lead.

Penn Manors second possession was short lived when a muffed kick off gave L.S. possession with more great field position. Carson Coleman ran the ball in for a two yard touchdown. The Comets had difficulty with the next drive as well, where they ultimately punted the ball away.

At the start of the second quarter Hunter Hildenbrand ran the ball 60 yards into the endzone, which gave the Pioneers a 21-0 lead. Even with Jordan Martin leading the Comets offensive line Penn Manor could not get the offense going, and they eventually punted the ball again. On the next possession the Wagner and Coleman duo struck again with Coleman rushing for 50 yards on the drive and Wagner dishing a 15 yard dime to Damoj Gray for a score. Going into the half the Pioneers were up 28-0.

An explosive offense led by Trent Wagner and Carson Coleman and a stifling Lampeter-Strasburg defense helped the Pioneers shutout the Penn Manor Comets 35-0.

Penn Manor's first possession had some momentum, but when Noah Bolin was tackled in the backfield by Harry Wolgemuth the Comets were forced to punt, which ended in a block. The blocked punt gave L.S. outstanding field position. Wagner made a pass to Jackson Heeter for a 12 yard touchdown pass, which gave the Pioneers a 7-0 lead.

Penn Manors second possession was short lived when a muffed kick off gave L.S. possession with more great field position. Carson Coleman ran the ball in for a two yard touchdown. The Comets had difficulty with the next drive as well, where they ultimately punted the ball away.

At the start of the second quarter Hunter Hildenbrand ran the ball 60 yards into the endzone, which gave the Pioneers a 21-0 lead. Even with Jordan Martin leading the Comets offensive line Penn Manor could not get the offense going, and they eventually punted the ball again. On the next possession the Wagner and Coleman duo struck again with Coleman rushing for 50 yards on the drive and Wagner dishing a 15 yard dime to Damoj Gray for a score. Going into the half the Pioneers were up 28-0.

 Dallastown vs Manheim Township

By Carl Frederick

Manheim Township blanks Dallastown prepares for their showdown with Harrisburg

Midway through the third quarter with the game well in hand for the Blue Streaks, Head Coach Mark Evans pulled his starters as his squad was cruising to a victory “We wanted to get the bad taste out of our mouth” referencing their heartbreaking loss to Cumberland Valley last week. When asked about pulling his starters early in perhaps preparation with their showdown with state power Harrisburg next week “It’s a long season, these kids work just as hard, its important for them to get their feet wet”.

Manheim Township came out of the gate on fire against Dallastown, on the opening kickoff McCaskey transfer Shymere Covington returned the ball 56 yards all the way to Wildcat 39 yard line. One play later Junior Quarterback Hayden Johnson (2 touchdowns) found a streaking Nick Good out of the backfield for a touchdown (7-0).

The Blue Streaks were determined not to let the big play hurt them defensively, harassing Wildcat quarterback Owen Strauss all evening. Coach Evans squad kept Pittsburgh commit Kenny Johnson in check too holding him to only 2 receptions and out of the endzone.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom for Dallastown as they picked off Johnson in the endzone on the next possession. Not much after that went right for first year Head Coach Levi Murphy’s team as another 3 and out set Johnson and company in prime field position. Nick Good would finish off the Blue Streak 6 play drive with a 9-yard powerful run for a score (14-0).

Manheim Township has a host of playmakers offensively and tonight it was the Nick Good show as he notched his third touchdown midway through the second quarter. On a 4th and 7 from the Dallastown 35, the Junior running back split out wide and Johnson found him all alone for the touchdown (21-0). Sophomore Declan Clancy would add a 1-yard score right before halftime and the home squad had a commanding 28-0 lead.

Dallastown managed only 1 first down in the first two quarters, finally had some momentum going to start the third quarter. After a botched kickoff and a pair of Caleb Fox runs, the Wildcats had marched all the way up to the Blue Streaks 20-yard line. The drive would stay with two Dallastown penalties and a Jake Laubach interception.

3 plays later the Senior Laubach would put on his turbo button and dash all the way for a 45-yard touchdown run (35-0 Manheim Township). The game was well in hand at this point Coach Evans pulled the bulk of his starters as Coach Murphy’s squad looked like they were begging for mercy.

A 37-yard field goal and a high snap (out of the endzone) would result in 5 more points for Manheim Township as they shutout Dallastown 40-0.

Junior Nick Good who had 3 touchdowns and nearly 200 total yards (punt return yardage included) was just happy to get the win “We needed this game it was a big show out game for us” Good replied “The talent we have this year, bunch of people are looking down on us because we are young, I see us all putting it back together and I am excited.”

Manheim Township (1-)1) will need that same energy as they travel to Harrisburg next Friday. They dropped an overtime thriller to the Cougars last season, Dallastown (0-2), will look to get Coach Murphy his first win when they welcome Hershey a week from today. 

Coach Weider’s Games of the Week

York At Hempfield

Week 1 Recap: York High lost a heartbreaker to Woodland Hills 28-24 on Friday night when they couldn’t score inside the 5-yard line at the end of the game. Hempfield stormed back from being down 13-0 to come back for the win 30-13 against Dallastown. Impressive effort by Hempfield.

Key Matchup: Which running back can be stopped? On one team is Jaheim White the dynamic running back from York High and the West Virginia commit. On the other team is Grant Hoover. He rushed for 200 yards last week against Dallastown. Who can stop the running game will go a long way to determining who will win this one.

Elizabethtown At J.P. McCaskey

Week 1 Recap: Elizabethtown came out on top of rival Donegal when they exploded for 43 points. McCaskey came out on top of John Bartram in overtime.

Key Matchup: Both Quarterbacks are playing well in this matchup. Josh Rudy threw for 5 touchdowns last week for Donegal. The flip side is Matt Ramash for McCaskey. Ramash rushed for the game-winning touchdown last week and threw for 2 touchdowns. Which team can stop the other passing game will be a big part of this game. This one could be a shootout (my colleague CJ should cover this since all he sees is shootouts.

Dallastown at Manheim Township

Week 1 Recap: Dallastown lost to Hempfield after leading 13-0. Manheim Township lost 31-27 in a back-and-forth game against Cumberland Valley. This game also featured a weather delay as well.

Key Matchup: Turnovers and big plays. Dallastown in the loss to Hempfield had several miscues to lead directly to Hempfield points. Township hung in their very well against Cumberland Valley but was a victim of several big plays. Whichever team limits these two areas should have the best chance to win. 

Week 2 Players to Watch

by Aaron Frederick

Rocco Daugherty RB/LB Manheim Central:

I personally attended Manheim Central’s week one game against the West Chester East Vikings and Daugherty had one of the better defensive performances I’ve seen from a high school player. He had THREE DEFENSIVE TOUCHDOWNS (Interception return, Fumble recovery return, and a blocked punt return) leading the Barons to a 56 to 7 blowout over WC East. They face Immaculata from New Jersey this week and I fully expect to see more highlights from Daugherty. This Manheim Central team is very well coached, and they put players in positions to make plays.

Grant Hoover RB/LB Hempfield:

Watching the highlights from his week one game against Dallastown one thing was abundantly clear, Coach Eager has himself one heck of a player running the football. Hoover tallied up 185 yards on the ground while showing very good speed and ability to shed tacklers in their 30-13 victory over Dallastown. Hempfield is facing York this week and I would assume Hoover will have a big role in this week two matchup.

Eli Warfel QB Penn Manor:

Penn Manor notched a 27 to 13 win over Conestoga Valley in a very important week one matchup. It wasn’t a mind-blowing game passing wise for Warfel, but he did gash the Buckskins defense for a team high 133 yards on the ground. The two-year starter has a good frame and can throw the football very naturally which will need to be utilized in their week two match against Lampeter Strasburg who is going to be hungry after a close loss to Solanco in week one. I would look for Warfel to have a few redzone touchdowns primarily with the use of his legs in this one. LS vs PM (Battle of Kendig Square) is a backyard rivalry that always ends up in a dog fight.

Lancaster Catholic vs York Catholic

by Scott Giebel

Special teams lead the way in Lancaster Catholic’s stunner over York Catholic

Lancaster Catholic kicked off their season with a bang as Jaevon Parker ran the opening kickoff 90 yards for the opening touchdown. This would set a tone for the rest of the game for Lancaster Catholic’s special teams.

Early on York Catholic struggled to get anything going as the Crusaders defense was harassing Levan McFadden and company. The All-state candidate improvised with his legs a lot to get his offense going. One of his biggest plays of the game was when he ran for 50 yards and from then on, he would finish with 112 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

On the opposite end of the field, a big story that was trending was the fact that Lancaster’s long snapper had been injured prior to the game, so the Crusaders had to go for it on every 4th down. That didn’t seem to stop the offense though as Will Cranford had a great connection with both Josh Acker and RJ Gonzalez who went for 34 yards and 37 yards.

Penalties did haunt the Crusaders all game they had some big plays on offense that were called back. Coach Maiorino’s special teams came in big throughout the game, that really gave his squad the boost they needed. York Catholic lined up to kick a 22-yard field goal and it was blocked and recovered by Kellan Murphy who ran it back 89 yards to put Lancaster Catholic up 22 to 0.

Being down 22 to 0 in a football game is generally a daunting task for any football team and for York Catholic this was no exception, but they put in the work to get them back in the game. Nick Creisher was a big reason why York Catholic stayed in the game as he was all over the field on defense and offense which gave the Irish a much-needed boost. McFadden also chimed in defensively with an interception and the Fighting Irish cut the lead to 22-14.

With 3:50 to play in the game Lancaster Catholic was driving up by one score and they could seal the game by running out the clock or getting points on the board. The injury to the long snapper had the Crusaders going for it on 4th down and turned it over on downs giving York Catholic one more chance to tie the game. The drive started with a 43-yard bomb by McFadden which was then followed up by a nice run by him running on his own deep inside into the home team’s territory. The game came down to 4th and goal to tie the game and freshman Brandon Way Jr.(making his first career start) broke up the final pass securing a win for Lancaster Catholic 22 to 14

Overall, the game was played well by both teams offensively and defensively and at the end of the day, special teams for Lancaster Catholic won the game with two big returns. York Catholic was able to make a good final push to make the game interesting, but the lack of an offensive line led to a crucial 4th down falling apart and giving Lancaster Catholic the win. 

Penn Manor vs CV

by Matthew Ober


Friday night started as an emotional night at Conestoga Valley as the team honored their two fallen teammates Tyrese Smith and Tyler Zook who had passed away this summer. After a moment of silence and the national anthem it was time for kickoff.

Penn Manor got the ball first but CV forced an early fumble. Penn Manor answered by sacking CV QB Macoy Kneisley twice which resulted in a punt. Penn Manors QB Eli Warfel piloted his offense down the field and scampered 8 yards to pay dirt to make the score 7-0 with 5 minutes left in the first quarter. A misjudged play on the ball on the ensuing kickoff gave the ball right back to the comets and they took advantage. After a good mix of passes and runs Penn Manor senior running back Spencer Stuart found the end zone from 1 yard out. That brought the score to 13-0 after CV blocked the extra point.

That blocked extra point and a big pass interference call against the Comets would give CV alittle momentum. With 4:30 left in the half Macoy Kneisley threw a beautiful pass to CV Senior wideout Jeff Fisher who had run a slant route and beat his man on the way to the end zone for a 15 yard rec TD. The touchdown made the score 13-7 Penn Manor. On the next drive thanks to a huge QB run by Eli Warfel and another run by running back Jonathan Osman the Comets threatened to score before the half. CV defense stood tall and stopped the Comets on 4th down by forcing a fumble and bringing an end to the half.

CV got the ball to start the half after 3 plays into the drive, Macoy Kneisley was under pressure and took a hit. The ball had come loose and bounced into the waiting arms of Penn Manor defensive lineman Jordan Martin. He rumbled 17 yards into the end zone delivering the dagger to CV and giving his team a 20-7 lead with 10 minutes to go in the 3rd. Senior Noah Bolin would later join the TD party with a 2 yard TD run after an almost 4 minute drive for Penn Manor. CV would later intercept an Eli Warfel pass but the Penn Manor defense stepped up and forced a turnover on downs. In the 4th quarter CV had one final drive in them and it ended with a 4 yard TD run by Collin Martin. This brought the score to 27-13 which ended up being the final.

Penn Manor defense was the story of this game and Penn Manor Head Coach John Brubaker praised his defense postgame by saying “for 3 quarters our defense swarmed to the ball” he also mentioned Jordan Martin “stepping in and making the big play”. After starting off the season 1-0 Penn Manor moves onto next week and faces Lampeter Strasburg while CV welcomes Daniel Boone as they look to get their first win of the season.

McCaskey vs John Bartram HS

by Jeremiah Miller

J.P. McCaskey High School defeated John Bartram High School 30-24 on Saturday in the first game of the season for both schools. The contest took place on John Bartram’s home turf in Philadelphia under the center city skyline and a scorching sun.

“I feel tired,” McCaskey coach Ben Thompson said following an almost three-hour see-saw and nail-biting overtime. “I’m good tired. It’s worth it. These guys have worked hard all summer.”

The day seemed to belong to McCaskey from the beginning, with Red Tornado Quineak Talton scoring a 7-point touchdown in the first quarter. The Bartram Braves did respond in the second with a touchdown caught by Rameer Owens and a 2-point play that gave Bartram an 8-7 advantage.

The Tornado maintained decisive control in the third, capturing a 24-8 lead with touchdown passes thrown by QB Matthew Rehash and caught by D’Andre Jones, as well as Liam Cox’s field goal.

Things started to get interesting with the last play of the third quarter with the Braves’ Jahmi Hargrove running a 15-yard TD. In the fourth, with 5:22 left on the clock, Bartram tied the game with QB Samad Robinsons’s 7-yard run and Hargrove’s 2-point run.

Though McCaskey was poised to win in regulation time, Remash got flagged for intentional grounding with eight seconds on the clock, and then blundered on a Hail Mary. The game went into overtime.

McCaskey elected to defend after winning the coin toss. Three yards from the end zone, another play collapsed. In a second attempt, Remash ran the winning touchdown.

“The most challenging part was the unknown,” Coach Thompson said. “We had a lot of changeover this past year on the O line and the D line since last year. We had a lot of seniors leave last year.”

Elizabethtown (1-0) will visit the Barney Ewell Sports Complex at McCaskey High School this Friday. The Red Tornadoes start 1-0 for the second year in a row for both under now Coach Thompson. 

Donegal vs Elizabethtown

by Carl Frederick

Elizabethtown blasts right through crosstown Rival Donegal in Coach Stokes Debut

If it were up to Coach Stokes, he would have had his Bears score 50, but between players cramping, ridiculous humidity and message already been sent, he settled for a 43-21 victory over Donegal. “I wanted 50, I don’t care who it was, but is a good win though” Coach Stokes said, “Offense helps defense, defense helps offense, once we started scoring, we weren’t stopping”.

The Elizabethtown Bears were humming from the start against Donegal, scoring on their first four possessions, but it wasn’t pretty out of the gate. Led by returning Section all-star Noah Rohrer the Indians marched right down the field on their opening drive and Rohrer finished off the 9-play drive with a 5-yard touchdown run. After Braden Cummings (more on him later) hit Cade Capello on a trick play, Logan Lentz plunged in from the 2 to tie the game at 7 apiece.

Noah Rohrer took the ensuing kickoff nearly the distance getting tracked down at the 9, he would finish the drive off two players later with another 5-yard touchdown run (14-7 Donegal). This is right about when Senior Josh Rudy got rolling as he hooked up Braden Cummings on a 36-yard pass, the extra point saw a botched snap leaving the Bears trailing 14-13.

The Bears finally got a stop defensively and the connection between Rudy and Cummings was back on display. This possession saw Rudy hit one of the league leading receivers in stride for a 46-yard touchdown (21-13 Elizabethtown). Another Donegal 3 and Out, and Rudy marched his squad down the field this time hitting Cade Capello for a 22-yard touchdown pass (28-14).

Rohrer did nearly everything for the Indians, including just missing a 31-yard field goal to end the half. After another Rudy to Cummings connection to make it 35-14, Rohrer drove Donegal all the way down the field and notched his third rushing touchdown to pull the Indians within 14 (35-21).

It was not enough as Rudy (250 yards passing, 5 touchdowns) hit Braden Cummings for the fourth time for a 33-yard touchdown to put this one out of reach at 43-21. Cummings himself would then stop Donegal’s last minute scoring attempt picking off Landon Baughman’s pass at the 4-yard line.

For the second season in a row Elizabethtown bested Donegal in this bitter rivalry, the Indians need to regroup quickly as the welcome York Suburban. New Head Coach Keith Stokes and his squad will travel to face McCaskey (1-0), “We feed of each other” Coach Stokes replied, “The league better watch out”. 

Solanco vs LS

by Carl Frederick

Solanco brings the Milk Jug Trophy back to Quarryville with their victory over Lampeter-Strasburg

For the first time since 2018 the Solanco Golden Mules took down the LS Pioneers 40-35 in a game that came down to the final play. After an Elijah Cunningham touchdown put the Mules up with 21 seconds to go, Trenton Wagner marched the Pioneers down to the 17, but his last second pass fell incomplete, giving Solanco the win. “Our kids just kept battling away, that’s what these Seniors are” Coach Cox said, “They are hard family kids, we are a community program, they came out and supported us and it was great football game”.

Things did not start out well for Coach Cox’s squad as they saw themselves behind early 21-7 after 1 quarter of play. New starting quarterback Trenton Wagner (3 total touchdowns) hit Dean Herr for a 35-yard score and Carson Coleman (2 rushing touchdowns) bulldozed his way from the 5, giving the home team an early advantage.

Solanco would not go away though as Josiah Forren took his second score of the night 6 from yards out. After a fumbled kickoff, Senior Quarterback Brody Mellinger took in a 2-yard keeper tying it 21-21. Right before halftime Junior LS Tailback Carson Coleman plowed his way to paydirt giving the Pioneers at 28-21 halftime advantage.

To kick things off to start the third Josiah Forren would pick up his own fumble on the opening kickoff and dash through the middle 92 yards for a kickoff return touchdown (28-28). At this point it seemed that whoever had the ball last was going to snatch the victory. On the very next possession Trenton Wagner threw a dime to Damoj Gray for a 50-yard score to make it 35-28 LS with 9:23 left in the third.

Both defenses finally started to settle in as the score remained that way after three quarters of play. Solanco would open the 4th with a 20 play 74-yard drive capped off with a Cole Harris 1 yard touchdown. The Mules went for two on the PAT and were stopped short with 10:29 left keeping them behind 35-34.

Behind new tailback Carson Coleman LS looked like they were on their way to putting this contest on ice. Coleman took the Pioneers down to the 2 but when Wagner couldn’t handle a bobbled shotgun snap Solanco was in business. Recovering the Wagner fumble at the 14, the Mules methodically marched down the field this time with both the triple option and a couple of passes sprinkled in. Mellinger and company got all the way to 8-yard line when fellow Senior Elijah Cunningham took a jet sweep in for the go ahead score.

The defending section champs had only 21 seconds left but with two pass plays they made it all the way to the Mules 17-yard line. Wagner’s final pass of the evening, with just 2 ticks left on the clock, fell incomplete and Solanco had pulled off the victory. Winning quarterback Brady Mellinger (2 rushing touchdowns) could not have been prouder of his crew “it means everything, we have such a close bond, a brotherhood we have been playing together since we were in the third grade”.

Next week does not get any easier for Lampeter-Strasburg as they welcome Penn Manor (1-0) in the annual backyard brawl. Solanco will return home facing another tough Section 4 team in Cocalico (1-0). 

Eastern York vs Columbia

by Stephin McCloskey

Eastern York's sloppy offensive play and Columbia's tough defense were on display Friday night when the Columbia Crimson Tide beat the Eastern York Knights 34-7.

Both teams started the game with three and outs and were plagued with holding calls and delay of games. On the second drive of the game Daezjon Giles put the Crimson offense on his back with a 20-yard run to start the drive, and a 41 yard touchdown pass to Demari Simms to end the drive. During that same drive he also had a 13-yard completion to Cael Lingafelt. From then on it was all Giles, Simms, Artie Poindexter and the Crimson Tide defense.

Austin Billet and the Knights offense struggled for the entirety of the first half, and did not have a single first down, but limited their turnovers. The play calls were right, but the struggling offense couldn't connect with one another. On the other side of the ball Eastern York was having a hard time stopping Giles and Steven Rivas who connected for an eight-yard touchdown pass as the half was winding down. The Knights had one more chance before the end of the half, but a subsequent blocked punt halted their advance. By half time Columbia had led 14-0.

Columbia got the ball to start the third, but an accidental knee pinned them at the 15-yard line, and another three and out ensued. Eastern York's first drive of the half Billet seemed to have found a rhythm making plays with his arm and his legs. At the tail end of the drive the Knights dysfunction showed. They had a delay of game and a holding call in back-to-back plays. The momentum of the game completely shifted when Billet was picked off by Demari Simms for a 97 yard pick six, which put Columbia up 20-0 to end the third quarter.

On the first drive of the fourth quarter Billet was picked off again, but this time it was by Artie Poindexter, who returned it 22 yards. This gave the Crimson Tide great field position and resulted in Giles running the ball in for a touchdown. On Eastern York's third drive they had caught some traction and Billet connected with Jonathon Rose for a 22-yard touchdown pass. Domo Diaz-Ellis then proceeded to take the kick return to the house and Columbia went up 34-7. On the next two drives by the Knights, Poindexter picked off Billet twice.

Led by Giles, Simms, and Poindexter Columbia found themselves with a victory over their previous head coach Bud Kyle. Coach Mathias notched his first career win and now Columbia has momentum going into next week's match up against Hanover.

Post-game interview with Daezjon Giles

SM: You had two passing touchdowns, a rushing touchdown, and no turnovers. Is this the type of senior campaign we can expect from you?

Giles: Honestly, we just come out and play, and whatever happens, happens. I try to throw the ball and hit my open guys and play as best as I can. My teammates helped me out to make those plays.

SM: When was the turning point of the game?

Giles: The turning point, honestly was when we were being doubted, and being underdogs. Coming out of the locker room we had some great energy and were encouraging each other.

SM: What are your predictions for the season?

Giles: After tonight I think we are going to have a pretty successful year, hopefully a lot of wins.

Hempfield vs Dallastown

by Collin Richardson

This game had blowout written all over it at the beginning. Dallastown’s star wide receiver and Pittsburgh Commit Kenny Johnson hauled in his first reception for a breakaway touchdown on the opening drive of the game. Then on Hempfield’s first drive, a foiled screen pass on 3rd down thrown by Cody Gehres fell right into the arms of Beau Linsinbigler. He then took it back 28 yards for another 6 for Dallastown. This just got real ugly in the blink of an eye. But, as much as the student section, fans, and maybe even some of the players thought this game was over, Grant Hoover and Jackson Landis had something to say about the now 13-point deficit they found themselves in.

“I honestly didn’t say anything to the team after it.” Said Coach Eager. “These guys have grown up like Brian Williams, Aidan Shorter, I told them to keep playing Hempfield Football.” After that, the Knights put together a slow but effective 13 play drive highlighted by three straight runs of over 10 yards. Hempfield only threw the ball once, a 6-yard gain to junior Micah Gates thrown by Cody Gehres. “Major” Landis then maneuvered his way through Dallastown’s defensive line for 6. The question was; does Hempfield have an answer for Kenny Johnson and the rest of the Dallastown offense?

Things didn't look that way after Hempfield let up a 30-yard gain to, you guessed it, Kenny Johnson on 3rd down. As the drive moved along, there was a jump ball to Johnson in the end zone. As he was coming down, he had it. But a defensive star for Coach Eager, Gabe Benjamin ripped the ball right out of Kenny Johnson’s hands for a touchback. A massive swing in the right direction. “A proud father moment, as weird as it sounds.” Again,” said Eager; “I’ve been around football for a long time, might’ve been one of the best picks I’ve seen, especially against a guy of his (Johnson’s) skill.”

On Hempfield’s now 3rd drive, Landis turned a 14-play drive into another 6 with 3:01 to play. The Wildcats were forced to punt after 3 straight incompletions to Johnson. The snap on the punt sailed over Ty Borden’s head, and Hempfield recovered at the 3. Landis then scampered in for his 3rd touchdown. With 1:32 left, Dallastown needed an answer badly. They got down in 6 plays to Hempfield’s 16, but some bad clock management ended the quarter.

Hempfield then gained some breathing room on the first drive of the 3rd, giving the ball to Grant Hoover 5 plays in a row, and 7 total. He had 62 yards on the drive. Landis then pushed in for his 4th, making it 27-13 after Biscoe missed the XP. Dallastown then had a quick 4 and out. Hempfield then dashed and dodged their way out from inside their own 5. Grant Hoover moved his troops into DT territory with a 64-yard run on the first play. After that, they could not reach the first down marker. But fear not, as Biscoe drilled a 47-yard field goal to make it 30-13.

The teams then traded the ball back and forth. A 3 and out, a missed kick, and the score at the end of 3 is Hempfield with an astounding 30 unanswered, and Dallastown with a now measly 13. Early in the 4th, DT QB Owen Strouse threw up a deep ball to Jalen Cook which was picked by Braydon Felsinger with 6:56 to go. Hempfield then had a 4 and out, but Dallastown did as well with now backup QB Will Logan in. Hempfield then kneeled a few times, and this one was over. Hempfield scores 30 unanswered, and leaves Dallastown in the dust. Resilient. 

Football Players to Watch - PART 3

By: Stephin McCloskey

717 Sports Media is bringing the Lancaster area its first player preview of the year, with many more to come. This list consists of a wide variety of players from 4 star commi