SALISBURY For Palmerton senior wide receiver Monty Szukics, it was more than just his first game back playing offense. It was a chance to prove himself as an offensive weapon.
Last night, the 5-11, 150-pound speedster did just that, as he made the most of his comeback into the offensive lineup, hauling in eight catches for 125 yards and a touchdown.
Along with senior quarterback Cody Grohotolski and junior tailback Alex Vignone, the trio provided enough offensive firepower to help their team score an 18-6 win over the Falcons and improve to 2-1 on the young season.
"It feels great to be 2-1," Szukics, who was saddled with an injury, said afterwards. "I'm also really glad to be back, playing on offense and to be with my teammates out there on the field and to contribute to the team."
The Blue Bombers scored 18 points, but the game wasn't as close as the final score. Not only did the Bombers win, but they out-rushed the Falcons (170-49), had more passing yardage (159-66), had more first downs (15-5), and had the more exciting plays throughout the game. They also had two touchdowns called back because of penalties.
"There were definitely a lot of positives that we take away from this one," said Palmerton head coach Chris Walkowiak. "We have to take notice to the sloppiness with way too many penalties tonight. We had two touchdowns called back and we kind of shot ourselves in the foot, in that aspect."
The Bombers had 10 penalities for 65 yards and did fumble the ball once,areas of concern for the coaching staff in the next six days before heading into their Homecoming game Friday night against Saucon Valley.
Early on, the two teams gave the ball back-and-forth to each other as they played to a scoreless tie in the first quarter.
Palmerton struck first in the second quarter as Grohotolski slipped through the line on the right, before finding the end zone from 20 yards out for the 6-0 lead.
However it only took Salisbury two plays to respond. Quarterback Michael Abraham found Dakota McKelley open on the right, who slipped away from tacklers, before speeding away for a 53-yard, tying TD. That made the score 6-6 at intermission.
In the third quarter, the Bombers accelerated with two more TDs, producing the final score of 18-6.
First, Szukics was flew down the left side of the field before taking in the Grohotolski pass for a 48-yard touchdown.
On the next Palmerton possession, it was Vignone's turn to shine, as he jetted up through the left side, before finding room to provide points on a 22-yard scamper.
Grohotolski and John Snyder both recovered fumbles for the Bombers, while Snyder and Kane Kralik added sacks.
"Overall, I'm happy because these kids didn't quit and kept on fighting," Walkowiak related. "They definitely showed they have some resiliency."
"That's what makes us different from teams in previous years, I think," Szukics added. "There's just a different attitude in the huddles and we have that short-term memory thing where we can quickly get over errors and focus on the next play."