Haven's big plays top JT
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN The first seven weeks of the season, the Jim Thorpe defense was able to keep its opponents bigs plays to a minimum.
It only took Schuylkill Haven a single snap to set up an evening full of offensive fireworks on the turf of Rotary Field.
The Hurricanes' Brian Murphy and Tyler Naus combined to light up the Olympians' defense for a number of big plays that either went for quick scores or set the table for touchdowns.
In the end, the hosts were able to run away with a 42-27 Anthracite Football League victory.
"One thing we didn't do all year was give up the bigs plays and tonight we gave up big plays all over the place," Rosenberger said. "Murphy had a couple of big runs against us. Naus had some big runs. You can't let that happen against good teams."
On the very first play of the game, Murphy dropped back in the pocket and found a streaking Jake Naus for the first of his three gamebreakers a 62-yard touchdown pass.
The Olympians responded by putting together an eight play, 58-yard drive on their very first offensive series. However, Naus showed he is as good as a linebacker as he is a running back stopping Shane Edwards shy of the first down on a 4th and 2 from the Hurricanes' six-yard line.
After Haven recorded the stop, it took just three plays before Murphy broke another one. This time, the 5-11, 185-pound signal-caller found a seam in the Olympians' defense for an 80-yard touchdown scamper.
The Olympians were able to force the Hurricanes to punt for the first time late in the opening quarter. Here's where the Olympians' PJ Johnson showed he had big play skills as well as he took a direct snap in a wildcat formation for a 76-yard TD run. With 1:09 left in the first quarter, the Olympians made it a 14-7 deficit.
Naus joined the highlight reel in the Hurricanes' next offensive series as he broke free towards the endzone. At first, it looked as if Naus would go all the way, but Johnson saved the day to bring Naus down after a 53-yard gain. Three plays later, with the drive extending into the second period, Naus finished it off with a two-yard plunge for the first of his two TDs.
After Ben Moore recovered a fumble in Haven territory, Johnson took another snap and broke free for a 40-yard touchdown run that pulled the Olympians within a touchdown at 21-14.
After Murphy rattled off a 41-yard run, which set up another Hurricane score in the third quarter, the Olympians' Tyler Moll and Khaalig Lynch hooked up for a 54-yard touchdown.
"You got to give a lot of credit to (Schuylkill) Haven," Rosenberger said. "They played a great football game and we were terrible. We didn't make any plays defensively and gave up lots of big plays. Thankfully we forced a few fumbles along the way to keep them out of the end zone a couple of times when they were driving. It was just a terrible defensive performances.
"We've got to bounce back Monday. It's just disappointing the way we played tonight that's for sure."