The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Shamokin News Wire

August 31, 2013

Pottsville helps spoil Yisrael’s debut

COAL TOWNSHIP — Travis Blankenhorn has already been offered a Division I scholarship to play baseball at the University of Kentucky. The Wildcats might want to look at the Pottsville High School senior as a potential standout for the school’s football program.

The 6-foot-2 senior was a one-man highlight reel Friday night, catching five passes for 188 yards, including one spectacular one-handed grab in the opening half to lead the Crimson Tide past Shamokin 41-13 on Friday at Kemp Memorial Stadium.

The loss put a damper on the first game for new Indians’ head coach, Yaacov Yisrael.

Both teams showed the typical first-game jitters and were guilty of sloppy play and mistakes. But it was Pottsville (1-0) that opened the season’s scoring when, on a second-and 12, quarterback Tyler Moser managed to squeeze a pass between two defenders and Blankenhorn somehow grabbed the ball one-handed out and raced 57 yards for a touchdown with 6:51 remaining in the period. Shamokin blocked the extra-point try.

The Indians’ defense exhibited a feisty attitude and kept the Tide offense in check most of the opening period, and the visitors were their own worst enemy with 11 penalties in the opening half for 101 yards.

With the score at 6-0 midway through the second period, the Indians took advantage of a short punt and went 54 yards in three plays to tie the score. John Demsko provided the big momentum lift in the scoring drive by bolting over the left side of the line and racing 50 yards down to the Tide 4 where he was knocked out of bounds by Blankenhorn. Two plays later Tucker Yost bulled through the middle of the line for a one-yard touchdown and deadlocked the game at 6-6. A bad snap prevented the PAT kick from getting off the ground.

The Tide responded immediately on the ensuing kickoff when Darion Jacoby returned the ball to the Indians’ 10 but a series of penalties moved it back to the 25. Carey Bostick picked up 11 yards to the 11 and two plays later Moser, after rushing for 10 yards, went over from the one and Kolby Kleckner’s extra-point gave the visitors a 13-6 lead.

With time running out and the ball at the Shamokin 48, the Tide went to the air again and Moser found Blankenhorn along the sideline for a 41-yard reception to the seven. Two plays later Jacoby went over from the two to give the Tide a 20-6 halftime lead.

“We made a lot of mistakes and hurt ourselves when we had the opportunity to put points on the board,” Yisrael said. “Our inexperience showed in certain situations and it hurt us.”

Despite what the scoreboard indicated the Indians clearly outplayed the Tide in the half but that inexperience in key areas and miscues were the difference from showing a different tally on the board.

Pottsville, with an obvious weight advantage and depth, began to wear down the smaller Indians, and it was Blankenhorn who bailed the team out of poor field position when he raced down the left sideline again and outjumped the defender en route to an 87-yard touchdown play that upped the lead to 27-6.

Taking advantage of a short Shamokin punt, Pottsville took complete control of the game with a six-play, 40-yard scoring drive culminating with Moser finding Quentin Chambers on fourth down for a 25-yard touchdown.

“We came out with a goal of wearing down their team in the second half, Tide head coach Tom McGeoy said. “Our line took control and we adapted better to the heat having played in Florida earlier and we were prepared for the weather.

“Our mistakes hurt us in the first half but we got big plays from out big-play performer when we needed the.”

The Indians did not roll over but responded by scoring on a Erik Taylor two-yard run with Alek Washuta adding the extra-point.

Pottsville capped the scoring in the game when Bostick ran for a nine-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.

1
Text Only
Shamokin News Wire
  • Heartland Division I
    Team W L PF PA
    Danville (10-3)* 5 1 352 184
    Mifflinburg (5-6) 4 2 226 253
    Selinsgrove (6-6) 4 2 261 261
    Shikellamy (5-6) 4 2 244 221
    Milton (5-6) 2 4 344 332
    Jersey Shore (6-7) 2 4 260 313
    Shamokin (0-10) 0 6 81 367
             

    *-denotes division champion

    July 11, 2012

  • CSSE38.jpg The Daily Item's High School Football Podcast

    Listen as The Daily Item's team of sports reporters and editors break down playoff games involving Danville and Southern Columbia this weekend - Sponsored by Blaise Alexander Ford Inc., Lewisburg

    November 21, 2013 1 Photo

  • The Coal Bucket stay with Mount Carmel

    Those doubters who believe that the “Coal Bucket” game becoming a meaningless matchup and has lost much of its luster did not see Friday night’s 2013 version of the annual backyard rivalry.

    November 2, 2013

  • Mount Carmel 21, Shamokin 0

    November 1, 2013

  • xshiksham26d.jpg Coal Bucket up for grabs

    Even if they were not aware of it coming in, all football coaches taking over the program at Shamokin are certainly made aware of that one game on the schedule that they need to find a way to win

    October 31, 2013 1 Photo

  • xshiksham26b.jpg Braves seniors step up against Indians

    SUNBURY — While Shikellamy was celebrating Senior Night against Shamokin on Friday, two seniors in particular stood out for the Braves.

    October 26, 2013 3 Photos

  • Shikellamy 28, Shamokin 0

    October 26, 2013

  • Twitter Feed

    August 14, 2012

  • Improving Shamokin Indians face the Shikellamy Braves

    SUNBURY — When winless Shamokin gave unbeaten Southern Columbia, the state’s No. 1-ranked Class A team (by Pennsylvania Football News) a tussle for the first quarter last week, it not only got the attention of the Tigers, who went on to win the game 56-0. Other coaches took notice as well, including Shikellamy’s Todd Tilford.

    October 24, 2013

  • Southern overcomes slow start in big victory

    It was a wake-up call that sent a mild tremor throughout the Southern Columbia sideline and it came from the most unlikely source to date, but it got the visitor's attention.

    October 19, 2013