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Written by: Pat Weider on Saturday, October 9th, 2021
Head Coach Bryan Strohl of Cocalico addresses his team after the victory Friday night.
Cocalico beat Conestoga Valley in a back and forth battle 46-28 win Friday night to improve to 4-3 (2-0 in section play) and Conestoga Valley dropped to 3-4 (1-1 in section play). Both offenses had big nights, but the rushing attack of Cocalico was too much for the Conestoga Valley defense to stop. Cocalico in their option-based offense and Conestoga Valley in their spread attack were both able to move the ball at ease most of the night. Cocalico was lead by fullback Anthony Bourassa with 4 rushing touchdowns and 205 yards rushing. Cocalico as a team rushed for over 300 yards on the night. Head Coach Bryan Stohl on the victory “I felt like we punched they counter punched even though 2 different styles of football. They spread it around, and throw it around and we run the ball. There are obviously some things we need to get better on our end, but we got the victory tonight”.
Cocalico opening the scoring when Bourassa scored on a 5-yard rushing touchdown, the extra point was not good, which lead to Cocalico failing on three missed 2 point plays after 1st half touchdowns. CV responded with a 24-yard touchdown pass from Macoy Kneisely, the extra point was good so CV lead 7-6. Later in half, after a Cocalico touchdown pass from Blayke Taddei to Dane Bollinger to take an 18-14 lead, Cocalico then did a surprising onside kick and was able to recover it. Cocalico then scored the final touchdown of the half when Taddei hit Brycen Flinton with a 25-yard touchdown pass to take a 25-14 lead, a lead that they would never relinquish. Strohl on the onside sick “Let’s just say it didn’t go quite as planned. Sometimes the attention and execution is not what your expecting, I am not taking any credit at all, but something we lucked out on”.
In the second half, Cocalico was able to continue to run the ball well and dominate the line of scrimmage, and pick up a big win by sticking to the ground game. The key to victory for Cocalico was the offensive line. All night they were able to control the Conestoga Valley defense. Strohl on the Offensive Line “When we look at our starting lineman most of those kids go both ways, but our skill kids only play one side of the ball. The offensive line really toughed it out and fought through it tonight for us. They competed all night. and were the key to the victory”.
The other key player for Cocalico continues to be Bourassa the LL leading rusher coming into tonight’s game. Strohl on his fullback “In our offense you need a fullback you can count on and number 20 is someone you can count on”. The other key point Strrohl wanted to mention was the following about Bourassa “He is such a tremendous leader”.
Cocalico captains addressing the team after the victory Friday night.
Finally, Cocalico is not known for their passing attack since the offense is centered around their option attack, but QB Blayke Taddai threw for 2 1st half touchdowns. Both touchdowns were momentum plays for Cocalico. Strohl on his QB “We don’t practice throwing it a ton. It is nice that when we need to throw the ball and he is a kid who can do that. I thought he did a nice job managing the game tonight and he certainly put the ball on the money for the touchdown passes”.
In defeat, Conestoga Valley put up a good effort. QB Macoy Kneisely threw for 338 yards and 4 touchdowns. Conestoga Valley has a great group of receivers and a QB who can deliver the ball to them. They routinely had wide-open guys all night. In the end, Cocalico and their rushing attack could not be stopped.
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