Mustangs stay unbeaten at 5-0
JOHNSTOWN — The undefeated Portage Mustangs had two rushers surpass the century mark and forced four turnovers on defense as the Mustangs controlled the action on both sides of the ball Saturday afternoon in a 49-13 WestPAC victory at Conemaugh Valley.
Portage rolled up 344 yards on the ground and kept the Blue Jay offense out of the end zone until the final minute of the game as the Mustangs kept pace with fellow conference unbeatens Berlin and Windber.
Play of the game: With Portage leading 7-0 early in the first quarter, Conemaugh Valley’s Logan Kent broke loose for a 29-yard run into Mustang territory. However, Portage’s Kaden Claar stripped Kent of the ball at the end of the play and recovered the fumble. The Mustangs converted that takeaway into a touchdown on the ensuing drive and kept the momentum from that point forward.
Player of the game: Portage running back Jon Wolford rushed for a game-high 163 yards and one touchdown on 20 carries.
Wolford: “I owe it all to my line. They played an amazing game, they blocked from the start to the end.”
Unsung hero: Portage junior offensive/defensive lineman Braedan Oravecz.
“Braedan played a solid game at both ends,” Mustang coach Marty Slanoc said. “He did a good job communicating with the line coaches, recognizing the defenses and understanding what was going on out there.”
Most vital statistic: Portage outrushed Conemaugh Valley, 344-194.
Slanoc: “Our kids were really excited to play this week. We challenged them to have a great week of practice, and they did. Conemaugh Valley presented some matchup issues for us, and I was proud of how we hung in there and played defense.”
Conemaugh Valley coach Matt Kent: “We never got into a groove and got our tempo going. Every time we did something positive, the next play would be a flag or a fumble or something negative.”
Notable: Portage running back Oren Heidler rushed for 147 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries. Claar ran for a pair of short-yardage scores. Kent rushed for 120 of Conemaugh Valley’s 252 total yards.
Records: Portage (5-0); Conemaugh Valley (1-3).
Next week: Portage hosts United. Conemaugh Valley travels to Blacklick Valley.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Portage 16 13 7 13 — 49
Conemaugh Valley 0 7 0 6 — 13
P–Heidler 3 run (Tubbs kick), 8:20.
P–Gouse 16 pass from Miko (Tubbs kick), 3:27.
P–Safety, Kent tackled in end zone, 2:30.
P–Claar 2 run (run failed), 11:24.
CV–No. Heltzel 85 kickoff return (No. Heltzel kick), 11:09.
P–Claar 3 run (Tubbs kick), 0:17.
P–Wolford 3 run (Tubbs kick), 6:49.
P–Heidler 84 run (Tubbs kick), 11:44.
P–Willinsky 45 fumble return (pass failed), 2:35.
CV–Stiffler 47 pass from Jasper (pass failed), 0:05.
TEAM STATISTICS P CV
First downs 13 10
Total yards 369 252
Rushes-yards 45-344 40-194
Passing yards 25 58
Comp-Att-Int 2-6-1 2-6-0
Punts-avg. 1-25 1-30
Fumbles-lost 1-1 5-4
Penalties-yards 8-60 5-50
RUSHING–Portage, Wolford 20-163, Heidler 12-147, Miko 5-8, Claar 5-25, Layo 1-2. Willinsky 2-minus 1. Conemaugh Valley, Kent 20-120, Ni. Heltzel 8-43, No. Heltzel 6-16, Bell 1-0, Jasper 1-0, Darr 1-3, McNulty 1-minus 4, Heinlein 1-4, Stiffler 1-12.
PASSING–Portage, Miko 2-6-1-25. Conemaugh Valley, No. Heltzel 1-3-0-11, Kent 0-1-0-0, Jasper 1-2-0-47.
RECEIVING–Portage, Gouse 1-16, Claar 1-9. Conemaugh Valley, Ni. Heltzel 1-11, Stiffler 1-47.