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Written by: Phil Myers on Saturday, September 11th, 2021
The Octorara Braves remained undefeated by beating a shorthanded Pottstown squad Friday night at Gene W. Davis Memorial Field in Atglen 55-13. Six different players scored for the Braves as their quick paced offense racked up 583 yards of offense against Trojans. Pottstown was undermanned because of Covid restrictions leaving about a dozen players in quarantine. Pottstown’s coach, Jeff Delaney, said thanks to the administration who left it up to the kids to decide, the remaining 25 players voted to play the game.
Octorara scored on their first possession on a Zion Raison-Peters one yard run, six plays after a successful fake punt on a fourth and one at the Braves’ own 27-yard line. That would be the only points put on the board in the first quarter as Pottstown forced an Octorara punt on their next possession. The Trojans’ offense did some good things the first three times they had the ball by driving into Octorara territory only to be denied by the Braves’ defense twice on downs and the third time on an interception.
Pottstown offense (in white).
Jed King, the Octorara head coach, commented on his defense by saying, “The defense played great tonight. We got a couple of picks, a couple turnovers. I told them if we can make plays against their passing game, get turnovers, we were going to win the game and we did that.” In fact, the Braves held Pottstown to 39 total yards passing and 3 completions while picking off 2 passes.
The second quarter was all Octorara as they scored five touchdowns while amassing 353 yards. Quarterback Weston Stoltzfus tossed three TD passes, one to Steele Wrigley that covered 70 yards, one to Mason Ellingsworth for 65 yards, and one to Corey Diantonio for 44 yards. Paul Murphy bolted 35 yards for a TD and Raison-Peters had another one-yard scoring run. That touchdown put the Braves on top 42-7 at halftime and ensured the mercy rule would go into effect in the second half.
Octorara’s #2 Darryl Jones goes in motion prior to a big gain.
Pottstown’s first half score came on a beautiful 80-yard kickoff return by Tyrese Washington. They would score again in the fourth quarter on a Mason Miller’s short run. Struggling with consistency, the Trojans’ offense sputtered after the first quarter when they accumulated 79 yards. For the rest of the game, they only garnered 102 yards with 26 coming on the last two plays of the contest.
Wrigley scored a third quarter touchdown for Octorara on a five-yard run and Mekhi Murray closed out the night’s scoring when he bolted 15 yards to the end zone. “Tonight was a total team effort. All my guys did good things. We do have a lot of weapons. Weston Stoltzfus is my ultimate distributor. He hit how many different receivers with touchdown passes? I got lots of guys who can make plays,” declared a happy Coach King.
“I think our offense does what it does. Our hurry up got them tired. That’s what we do, we try to press the pace and try to out condition teams. Once we got that moving, we hit a couple big pass plays. Pottstown was down some guys and played their tails off tonight, but they tired and my guys condition hard. I tell them, that’s what pays off,” said Octorara coach Jed King.
Stoltzfus threw for 238 yards and the three touchdowns by completing 7 of 9 passes, all in the first half. Murray rushed for 84 yards on 7 carries to lead the way in the rushing department for the Braves who actually saw 10 different players carry the ball at least once. Octorara had 17 plays of ten yards or more. For Pottstown, Malachi Neely was the workhorse netting 108 hard-earned yards on 20 totes.
Notes: Michelle King sang the National Anthem. She is the wife of coach Jed King. Octorara’s band was not available, but Pottstown’s Marching Trojans put on a fine halftime show for the fans.
The Pottstown Marching Trojan Band.
The stands were packed with high school football fans and Coach King had this to say, “The first game back with fans, that’s what Friday nights are all about. Thank God we’re out here doing this again. We have a great student section up there. It was red, white, and blue night in honor of the 20th anniversary of 9/11. I can’t be more proud of the school.”
Pregame honor of victims of 9/11. Players are locked arm in arm.
Octorara is an Indian tribe that used to roam the southeastern parts of Pennsylvania, perhaps a subtribe of the Delaware. According to some, the actual spelling of that particular tribe was Octoraro. There is also a stream called the Octoraro in the area which flows into the Susquehanna River.
Octorara (3-0) will visit Phoenixville (0-2) next week. This is only the third time Octorara began a season 3-0 since they started playing football in 2009. The other two were in 2011 and 2020. Pottstown (0-3) will host Upper Merion (2-1) next Friday.
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