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Central York earns first trip to Hershey @CentralYorkAth @centralyorkFB @mcdathletics @mcboostersfam

Written by: on Saturday, November 21st, 2020


For the first time in school history, the Central York Panthers are heading to the state championship.

“It feels amazing, it really does,” said Central York first-year head coach Gerry Yonchiuk. “I’m so proud of this football team. This is a special group of talented young men. Their will-power, determination, and any other cliche a coach can say you could throw out there today.”

Central York overcame a 14-point deficit and rallied past McDowell 37-21 Saturday afternoon at Mansion Park Stadium in Altoona.

“We wanted to come out and put them away early,” said Yonchiuk. “We didn’t do that. They’re a great football team. With them being a great team, we thought we’d force them to play behind if we could score early. We didn’t do that. We turned the ball over. I knew this group wouldn’t quit. The kids battled back like they’ve done all year when we’ve faced adversity.”

A 27-0 run through the second quarter helped the Panthers to a 27-14 lead by halftime.

Led by Penn State recruit junior quarterback Beau Pribula Central York scored on four straight second-quarter possessions.

Pribula brought the Panthers even at fourteen, scoring on runs of 11 and two yards. Isaiah Sturgis hammered home a 4th-and-goal touchdown from a yard out.

Less than two minutes later, Pribula connected with Judah Tomb on a 42-yard touchdown following a Trojan fumble.


“We made that happen in the second quarter for a couple of reasons,” said Yonchiuk. “One is the quarterback. When you have a player like Beau (Pribula), you’re going to be in every game regardless of the score. I know if it would have been 21-0, these guys still wouldn’t have batted an eye.”

Both Pribula and Tomb had monster games for Central York. Pribula threw for 319 and completed 25-of-39 passes with a touchdown and two interceptions, while Tomb was his main target hauling in ten passes for 185 yards with the score.

Isaiah Sturgis led all rushers with 106 yards on 18 carries.

“They have a system with some outstanding athletes out there,” said McDowell head coach Bo Orlando. “Pribula is a great player, and when he’s not doing stuff with his arm, he’s doing it with his legs. We made some adjustments at halftime, and we did slow them down in the second half. It just wasn’t enough today. I wish them the best next week, and they’re a great football program.”

For McDowell, the start couldn’t have been any better as they took the opening kickoff needed less than three minutes to open the scoring. Chris Juchno connected with Braeden Soboleski down the near sideline for a 46-yard touchdown pass 2:59 into the game.


The Trojans then extended their lead late in the first quarter as Justo Rivera scored on a 1-yard run following a Matt McGregor interception in the red zone as Central York looked to tie.

“We had the momentum going with those first couple of drives,” said Orlando. “We gave them a ton of different looks and were able to score on both of those.”

McDowell, which had gained over 200 yards of offense in the first, was limited to 68 yards in the second half, including negative five rushing.

“Every week, somebody steps up defensively for us,” said Yonchiuk. “We played better assignment football in the final three quarters. Keeping their offense off the board is no easy task.”

Chris Juchno led the Trojans going 15-for-38, passing 168 yards, a touchdown, and two interceptions. Justo Rivera added 72 yards rushing and a touchdown on 16 carries.

McDowell got themselves to within six points as reverse netted Central York the worst possible result as the fumble was picked up by Hunter Hodges and returned 11 yards a touchdown. That cut the deficit to 27-21 after three quarters.

“We got out of rhythm a little with the wet ball. some botched snaps, and some turnovers,” said Orlando. “Our guys found a way to get that momentum back and make it a game, but to their credit, they made the plays when they had to and ended up pulling away.”

The Panthers pushed the lead to two possessions following Cole Luckenbaugh’s 23-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter.

Pribula’s 51-yard scramble set up the field goal that pushed the Panther’s lead to 30-21.


Needing to get themselves back in the game, McDowell drove to midfield before Juncho was hit while throwing, and the ball was intercepted by Raquel Dewitt, who went on to score the game-clinching touchdown on the ensuing drive from 17 yards out with 1:36 to play.

Central York (10-0) will now play St. Joesef’s Prep (5-0) in the 6A State Championship.

“We’ll look at the film on St. Joes,” said Yonchiuk. “We know how good they are and their reputation. We’ll prepare and do what we need to do and see what happens.”

McDowell closes their season at 6-1.

“This was an unbelievable and special season for us,” said Orlando. “We had ups and downs with everything going on, and I’m proud of my guys. I can’t say enough about my senior class. A lot of those guys were not starters last season. This was a high-character team, and that culture is because of them. They are a special group of young men and came ready to play every week and ready to work every Monday.”

Game Highlights:


Central York 37 McDowell 21

Score by Quarters

McDowell – 14 0 7 0 – 21
Central York – 0 27 0 10 – 37

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

M – Braeden Soboleski 46 yd pass from Chris Juchno, (Kenny McLaughlin pat), 9:01
M – Justo Rivera 1 yd run, (McLaughlin pat), 0:48

Second Quarter

C – Beau Pribula 11 yd run, (Cole Luckenbaugh), 11:43
C – Pribula 2 yd run. (Luckenbaugh pat), 8:30
C – Isaiah Sturgis 1 yd run, (Luckenbaugh pat), 3:25
C – Judah Tomb 42 yd pass from Pribula, (kick failed), 1:29

Third Quarter

M – Hunter Hodges 11 yd fumble return, (McLaughlin pat), 9:43

Fourth Quarter

C – Luckenbaugh 23 yd field goal, 10:36
C – Raquel Dewitt 17 yd run, (Luckenbaugh pat), 1:36

Individual Stats

Rushing: Central York – Isaiah Sturgis 18-106, Beau Pribula 12-88, Raquel Dewitt 2-28, Jahmar Simpson 2-9, Judah Tomb 1-3, Team 3-(-6). Totals: 38-228. McDowell – Justo Rivera 16-72, Taha Ramahi 7-37, Chris Juchno 7-(-6), Anthony Emling 3-18, #62 1-13, Team 1-(-14). Totals: 35-120.

Receiving: Central York – Judah Tomb – 10-185, Taylor Wright-Rawls 7-75, Jahmar Simpson 3-31, Kyle Fontes 3-21, Cole Luckenbaugh 1-5, Parker Hines 1-2. McDowell – Braeden Soboleski 5-80, Hunter Hodges 3-20, Justo Rivera 1-10, Anthony Emling 5-58, Mathew McGregor 1-0.

Passing: Central York – Beau Pribula – 25-for-39, 319 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions. McDowell – Chris Juchno 15-for-38, 168 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions.

Interceptions: Central York – Raquel Dewitt, Jahmar Simpson. McDowell – Mathew McGregor, Rashawn Tate.

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