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Valley saves its season in 2nd half

Grant Musser

ALEXANDRIA — The Juniata Valley football team, facing a 15-point deficit against Purchase Line, needed something to get their offense going.

In the end, they got it Saturday night.

Thanks to a halfback pass from Grant Musser to Gabe Brower from five yards out, the Green Hornets scored 25 unanswered points as they beat the Red Dragons, 31-21, in the District 6 Class 1A semifinal at A.R. Simkins Memorial Field.

With the victory, the Green Hornets will get to defend their title this weekend against Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic in the title game. The game is scheduled for this Friday night at Mansion Park at 7 p.m..

Play of the game: Musser’s halfback pass to Brower set up the Juniata Valley comeback.

Player of the game: Musser was involved in all of the Green Hornet scores.

Unsung hero(es): Jacob Hensor had two big pass receptions of 40 and 50 yards, respectively. He came up just one yard short of reaching the century mark on three catches.

Most vital statistic(s): The Green Hornets only converted one PAT attempt, and punted just one time.

Juniata Valley coach Bill Musser: “The kids just decided at halftime this isn’t how they wanted to go out. They came out with a little different attitude, a sense of urgency, and it showed from top to bottom.”

Purchase Line coach Matt Falisec: “We were dominating them, they were doing trick plays all over the field. I thought our kids played a great game. That really hurt right there. They have a lot of good athletes, that’s a very good team.”

JV’s Grant Musser: “Teams sometimes fold, but we went up (to the locker room) at halftime and we talked about how we were down at one point to BG. We knew at halftime, we were going to have to work hard in the second half.”

Notable: The Red Dragons scored 21 points unanswered before Juniata Valley’s rally. … JV was able to overcome Kyle Day’s 157 yard night on 19 carries. … The Green Hornets did not have one rusher record over 100 yards even though they combined for 259 total yards on the ground.

Records: Juniata Valley (11-2); Purchase Line (8-5)

Next week: Juniata Valley will play BG in the District 6 Class 1A Championship; Purchase Line’s season is finished.

SCORE BY QUARTERS

Purchase Line 6 15 0 0 — 21

Juniata Valley 6 7 12 6 — 31

First Quarter

JV–Gr. Musser 3 run (Kick failed), 5:18.

PL–Barnett 1 run (Kick failed), :39.

Second Quarter

PL–Goncher 10 run (Goncher run), 3:11.

PL–Day 15 run (McCracken kick), 1:24.

JV–Brower 7 pass from Gr. Musser (Hill kick), :00.

Third Quarter

JV–Gr. Musser 16 pass from Rupert (Pass fialed), 7:25.

JV–Gr. Musser 1 run (Run failed), :14.

Fourth Quarter

JV–Gr. Musser 4 pass from Rupert (Pass failed), Time.

TEAM STATISTICS PL JV

First downs 16 19

Total yards 282 436

Rushes-yards 44-235 39-259

Yards passing 47 177

Passing (comp.-att.-int.) 3-5-0 11-26-0

Punts-avg. 3-36.3 1-32

Fumbles-lost 3-2 1-1

Penalties-yards 4-44 6-35

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING–Purchase Line, Day 19-157, Goncher 14-78, Sanchez 1-3, Brooks 5-14, Barnett 5-(-17). Juniata Valley, Brower 14-71, Betres 14-96, Rupert 3-34, Gr. Musser 4-13, Johnson 2-47, TEAM 2-(-2).

PASSING–Purchase Line, Barnett 3-5-0-47. Juniata Valley, Rupert 9-23-0-160, Brower 0-1-0-0, Muser 2-2-0-17.

RECEIVING–Purchase Line, Day 1-5, Sanchez 2-42. Juniata Valley, Brower 3-30, Musser 3-18, Hensor 3-99, Betres 2-30.

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