SAXONBURG - After starting the season at 2-0, the Hollidaysburg Golden Tigers were shut out for the second straight week.
Knoch forced four Hollidaysburg turnovers, two of which led to touchdowns, as the Knights posted a 35-0 Greater Allegheny Conference victory.
The deepest Hollidaysburg penetration Friday night was to the Knoch 35 late in the first half. The most sustained Golden Tigers possession of the game was a 12-play drive to the Knights' 37 late in the third quarter, but Hollidaysburg lost the ball on downs.
Hollidaysburg is 2-1 in conference play, 2-2 overall.
"We couldn't get any consistency in our run game and, it's frustrating, we really worked hard this week," said Golden Tigers coach John Barton. "We had a good week throwing the football, but we didn't see it tonight.''
Quarterback Brian Urban was limited to 52 rushing yards in 13 tries and was intercepted three times.
On Hollidaysburg's third play from scrimmage, linebacker Mike Cunningham's 42-yard interception return got the Knights started in the first game ever between the two Greater Allegheny Conference schools.
"It looked great," Cunningham said of his wide-open path to the end zone. "All week my linebackers coach told me to get into my drop area and be ready."
"Mike is what you want out of a veteran linebacker," said Knoch coach Mike King. "He can make big plays and ignite a team. It's the type of game you'd expect out of a team captain who's started for a while."
The Golden Tigers hung with the Knights until quarterback Dakota Bruggeman and Luke Kroneburg hooked up for a 47-yard pass play to the Hollidaysburg 7.
On the following play Ben Tackett, who came into Friday's game leading the WPIAL in touchdowns, scored his 12th of the season to put the Knights in the driver's seat.
"I felt like that was the spark that we needed," King said. "Luke ran a nice pass route and after that, I think our kids got a shot of confidence. That seemed to be the thing that turned it."
"It was one of those things where something bad happened to us, and we didn't respond," said Barton. "They hit a big play, and we didn't pick ourselves right up."
On the third play after the ensuing kickoff, Bruggeman intercepted an Urban pass at the Golden Tigers 45, setting up Knoch's third touchdown of the night.
A tight end screen to Kroneberg resulted in a 14-yard play.
Knoch's first possession of the second half resulted in a 25-yard pass play from Bruggeman to Cunningham.
Hollidaysburg then try to answer with its 12-play drive to the Knoch 37, but an incomplete pass on fourth down turned the ball over to the Knights early in the fourth quarter.
Knoch proceeded to drive 63 yards for the final score of the night. Kroneberg caught a fourth down pass from Bruggeman at the seven and dragged two Golden Tigers defenders into the end zone.
"It's an aggressive style of defense," King said. "That's the way we coach it; that's the way we play it. Our kids absolutely love to play defense."
The biggest play from scrimmage of the night was a 27-yard pass from Urban to Eli Hargis, but a pick-off on the following play turned the ball back over to Knoch.
"Those guys really played great tonight, and that's frustrating," Barton said of the Knoch defense
One bright spot Hollidaysburg was the solid play of defensive tackle Pat Ollinger, who recorded four sacks and spent much of the game in Knoch's backfield.
"Pat's a very good football player," Barton said. "He loves to play defense and he really did a great job for us tonight."
Bruggeman finished with 137 passing yards.
Dinges was credited with a first quarter fumble recovery for Hollidaysburg.
The Golden Tigers return home Friday to play Derry Area at 7 p.m.
Score by quarters
Hollidaysburg 0 0 0 0 - 0
Knoch 7 21 7 7 - 35
How they scored:
K: Mike Cunningham 42 interception return (Logan Tupper kick) 7:44
K: Ben Tackett 7 run (Tupper kick) 7:42
K: Luke Kroneberg 14 pass from Dakota Bruggeman (Tupper kick) 3:43
K: Cunningham 25 pass from Bruggeman (Tupper kick)
K: Kroneberg 26 pass from Bruggeman (Tupper kick)
Rushing:H: Brian Urban 18-52, Greg Dinges 9-30, Reed Miller 4-12, Tyler Miller 0-0, Zane Brunner 1-minus 1, Colton Ruggery 2 minus-2
K: Ben Tackett 19-89-1, Cory Godlewski 5-41, Dakota Bruggeman 11-37, Mike Cunningham 5-20, Troy Hixson 2-4.
Passing: H: Urban 4-12-0-36 K: Bruggeman 7-14-3-137
Receiving: H: Eli Hargis 1-27, Kaleb Springer 1-7, Blake Davis 1-5, Reed Miller 1-minus-3; K: Luke Kroneberg 4-92-2, Mike Cunningham 1-25-1, Adam Albert 1-17, Tackett 1-3.
First downs H K
Net Rushing 30-91 42-197
Net Passing 36 137
Total Yardage 127 334
Interceptions 1 3
Penalties-Yards 1-12 1-5
Fumbles-lost 1-1 3-1
Punts-avg. 4-36 3-33.3