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Maplewood slips past Cochranton @CochrantonPride @CoachBork53 @MHSTigersFootb1

Written by: on Saturday, October 3rd, 2020


Not the way they drew it up, but Maplewood escaped Cochranton 14-6 Saturday night.

“It absolutely was not how we drew things up,” said Maplewood head coach Bryan Borkovich. “Not to make excuses, but we had some kids out. We had to sit our quarterback out for the first quarter for breaking team rules, and that’s no fun.”

In a game that looked like nobody wanted to win, the Tigers used touchdowns of 31 yards by Kaleb Donor and 45 yards from Ben Giliberto to counter a Cardinals’ spirited performance.

“We got through it, it was sloppy, and that’s kind of how we’ve been on offense all year,” Borkovich. “We’re replacing a bunch of guys from last year, but we can’t be that bad on offense.”

Both defenses rose the occasion while the offenses sputtered through a scoreless first quarter.

Cochranton broke the ice when Kendrick Hostetler turned a quick pass into a 75-yard touchdown reception early in the second quarter.


It was the Cardinals’ first touchdown since their opening week loss against Saegertown.

“Hostetler and our quarterback Wyatt Barzak came over to me and said this what I’m seeing and what will work,” said Cochranton head coach Clifton Roberts. “I took a look at it, and sure enough, it was there.”

The Cardinals had a chance to take the lead driving into the red zone late in the first quarter, only to lose a fumble.

Unfortunately, that would turn into a habit for the rest of the game. Cochranton would lose four fumbles in total, three in the red zone.

“In all my years as a high school football coach, I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it,” said Roberts. “That many turnovers right in a row are a killer. Every time we got the ball in a prime position, we gave it right back to them.”

Maplewood countered late in the first half needing only two plays to take the lead. Dominick Kinney found Connor Palmiero for 33 yards. On the next play, Donor broke free from 31 yards out. Kinney hit Noah Burk for the conversion giving the Tigers an 8-6 lead heading into the locker room.

The Tigers increased their lead on Ben Giliberto’s 45-yard run with 4:16 to play in the third quarter that set the stage for a wild finish.

Special teams were not so special for the Tigers as two punt attempts gave Cochranton a golden opportunity to tie the game in the final quarter.

“It went back and forth like that for a while,” said Borkovich. “I was saying on the sidelines that nobody wants to win this game. We did make plays when we needed to. Our defense has been great all year, and again tonight.”

First, the Cardinals blocked a punt at the Tigers 30-yard line with ten minutes to play. However, the Cardinals gave it right back to Maplewood on a fumbled snap on the ensuing play.

Forcing a 3-and-out, a bad punt snap over Kinney’s head set up Cochranton at the Tigers 2-yard line with 7:35 to play.

Following two unsuccessful running plays and a false start penalty: Cochranton was faced with a 3rd-and-goal from the 4-yard line.

The wet football slipped right through quarterback Wyatt Barzak’s hands and was eventually recovered by Ethan Peterson.

Cochranton got one final chance but fumbled a double reverse with 2:14 to play and no timeouts ending the game.

“It’s a heartbreaking loss, I told the kids that there isn’t much that we can say to each other to console one another,” said Roberts. “All we can do is come back Monday and prepare for Cambridge Springs.”

Maplewood, who improves to 2-2 on the season, was led by Kaleb Donor, who rushed for a game-high 58 yards on 18 carries.

“We’ve talked about this before, we could easily 4-0 or 0-4,” said Borkovich. “This is how every game has been for us. Hopefully, we can build some momentum against Saegertown, which is the last region game for us.”

Cochranton falls to 0-4 on the season and will try and rebound when they play host to Cambridge Springs next week. Jon Gallo led the Cardinals with 56 yards on 12 carries, Wyatt Barzak was 4-for-9 passing for 104 yards and a touchdown.

“It was our mistakes tonight,” said Roberts. “My kids battled to end, and I’m very proud of that.”

Game Highlights:


Maplewood 14 Cochranton 6

Score by Quarters

Maplewood – 0 8 6 0 – 0

Cochranton – 0 6 0 0 – 0

Scoring Summary

Second Quarter

C – Kendrick Hostetler 75 yd pass from Wyatt Barzak, (pass failed), 10:34

M – Kaleb Donor 31 yd run, (Noah Burk from Dominick Kinney), 2:28

Third Quarter

M – Ben Giliberto 45 yd run, (pass failed), 4:16

Individual Stats

Rushing: Maplewood – Kaleb Donor 18-58, Ben Giliberto 2-44, Dominick Kinney 7-(-23), Jesse McFadden 1-2, Team 2-0. Totals: 30-81. Cochranton – Jon Gallo 12-56, Dustin Miller 10-12, Wyatt Barzak 5-(-12), Kendrick Hostetler 2-0, Team 4-(-26). Totals: 33-30.

Passing: Maplewood – Dominick Kinney 8-for 12, 91 yards, Kaleb Donor 1-for-1, (-4) yards. Cochranton – Wyatt Barzak 4-for-9, 104 yards, 1 touchdown, Kendrick Hostetler 0-for-1.

Receiving: Maplewood – Connor Palmiero 1-33, Noah Burk 1-9, Kaleb Donor 4-12, Jesse McFadden 2-7, Austin Porker 1-26. Cochranton – Kendrick Hostetler 2-80, Dustin Miller 1-1, Jack Mortinec 1-23.

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