Early scoring flurry helps Panthers triumph
LOYSBURG — In the first quarter of Northern Bedford’s matchup with the new team on the Inter-County Conference block, Curwensville, the Panthers were having their way.
Everything was clicking on offense and defense, but it was the play of the special teams that helped spark NBC out to a 28-point edge in the first quarter.
The Panthers had the game well in hand at that point, but that didn’t stop from Tide from battling in the second half — outscoring the home team.
However, the first half showing by Northern Bedford was more than enough to snap a three-game losing streak in rolling to a 41-20 victory on Friday night at Panther Community Stadium.
Play of the game: Northern Bedford’s Kainen Brown capped off the game’s opening drive by powering across the goal line from 2 yards out. Three straight incompletions by Curwensville quarterback Dan McGarry brought Jake Mullins out to punt. However, when NBC’s Mason Detterline was unblocked on the edge, the senior was able to block the punt where it was recovered by the Panthers at the Curwensville 2. Griffin Keller punched it in on first down to put Northern Bedford up 14-0 at 6:34. From there, the Panthers scored on their next three offensive chances.
Detterline: “We were watching film, and we saw that if we came hard off the outside edge, they have one guy in the backfield to stop the punt … I came off the outside edge and he (Curwensville blocker) blocked down on Aaron (Bowers), and I came around the outside and blocked the first one.”
Player of the game: Northern Bedford’s Bowers. The freshman played well beyond his years as his plays in the first quarter play a huge part in the Panthers put up 28 points. Three plays after the Keller TD run, Bowers intercepted McGarry and returned it 21-yards to the Curwensville 16. Brown scored four plays later from 7 yards out to make the score 21-0. On the Tide’s ensuing drive, Bowers blocked the Mullins’ punt attempt, which the Panthers recovered at the Curwensville 35. Three plays later, Bowers tossed a 22-yard scoring strike to Kain Baker with 1:22 left in the opening quarter to push the lead to 28-0. Bowers also handled the punting duties as he delivered punts of 53, 33 and 55 yards.
Bowers: “Mason came off the edge hard the first punt, and got to it. (On the second one) the tackle stepped out to block Mason, and I had a clean lane to get through — I got my arms on it … (On the interception) I read my guy, I saw the post coming. He (receiver) got a hand on it and tipped it, and it came right to me. I just kept my eyes on it, caught it and took off … (On the touchdown throw) I saw the linebacker stepped up on the jet sweep, and the safety stepped up. The other receiver was running a slant and the other backer was on him. I knew he (Baker) was out there somewhere, so I just chucked it up in his direction, and he made a good catch on it.”
Unsung heroes: The Northern Bedford offensive line opened holes for 250 rushing yards by nine ball carriers on 48 attempts.
Most vital statistics: Other than the 11-play scoring drive that NBC started the game off with, the Panthers needed just eight plays to score their next 21 points … The game moved at a slow pace as McGarry attempted 48 passes. Northern Bedford had a chance to have the clock moving the entire second half, but when Collin Yeatts’ extra point attempt was blocked by the Tide’s Carson Spencer, the score remained 34-0.
Northern Bedford coach Garry Black: “We saw some things on film where we thought we could get after their punt. We have some guys that will give everything for this football team. I was like, ‘it might sting when it hits you, but if you give us everything you got, you’re going to get in there and block the punt’. We did it twice, two different guys off the same edge. I’m just really, really proud of those guys for their effort because that set the whole first half tone.”
Curwensville coach Jimmy Thompson: “We just didn’t get off the bus. We started slow defensively, got two punts blocked and you’re down 21-0 before you can even get into a flow of the game. It’s hard to come back on anybody, but these guys (Northern Bedford) are a good, physical team.”
Notable: Northern Bedford’s Brooks Snider scored on a 1-yard run that made the score 34-0, while Keller punched in his second score on a 3-yard plunge at 10:47 of the fourth … McGarry completed 25 of his 48 attempts for 319 yards, including touchdown passes of 20 yards to Ty Terry, 80 yards to Mullins and 10 yards to Thad Butler … Mullins had five catches for 105 yards, Terry caught eight balls for 101 yards and Butler snagged eight passes for 74 yards … The Panthers narrowly won the total yardage battle by a 357-353 margin … NBC was penalized seven times for 61 yards after halftime.
Records: Curwensville (3-2); Northern Bedford (2-3).
Next week: Curwensville travels to Bellwood-Antis next Friday; Northern Bedford makes the trip to Everett the same night.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Curwensville 0 0 7 13 — 20
Northern Bedford 28 6 0 7 — 41
NB–Brown 2 run (Yeatts kick), 7:07.
NB–Keller 2 run (Yeatts kick), 6:34.
NB–Brown 7 run (Yeatts kick), 4:09.
NB–Baker 22 pass from Bowers (Yeatts kick), 1:22.
NB–B. Snider 1 run (kick failed), 7:19.
C–Terry 20 pass from McGarry (Mullins kick), 3:09.
NB–Keller 3 run (Yeatts kick), 10:47.
C–Mullins 80 pass from McGarry (Mullins kick), 10:22.
C–Butler 10 pass from McGarry (kick failed), 6:06.
TEAM STATISTICS C NB
First downs 15 22
Total yards 353 357
Rushes-yards 10-34 48-250
Yards passing 319 107
Passing (comp.-att.-int.) 25-48-1 7-14-0
Punts-avg. 5-17.4 3-47.0
Fumbles-lost 0-0 4-1
Penalties-yards 4-30 8-71
RUSHING–Curwensville, Butler 5-30, McGarry 5-4. Northern Bedford, Johnson 7-37, E. Snider 5-53, A. Detterline 1-3, Bowers 2-(-6), Keller 13-83, M. Detterline 8-38, Baker 1-1, Brown 8-42, B. Snider 1-1, TEAM 2-(-2).
PASSING–Curwensville, McGarry 25-48-1-319. Northern Bedford, E. Snider 6-13-0-85, Bowers 1-1-0-22.
RECEIVING–Curwensville, Butler 8-74, Mullins 5-105, Irwin 2-27, Terry 8-101, Freyer 2-12. Northern Bedford, Bowers 2-35, Baker 1-22, B. Snider 2-29, Keller 1-9, Johnson 1-12.