Indians defeat ESN
Bob Ford/TIMES NEWS Lehighton's Zach Coleman is stopped by Julian Anamege (27) and Imad Taylor of East Stroudsburg North. Coleman did have a 35-yard touchdown run in the game as the Indians posted a 36-19 victory.
You hear it from every coach.
And Lehighton's George Ebbert is no different.
But while many mentors hope for it to happen, Ebbert is actually seeing it happen.
Win or lose, we just want to improve every week.
"I know it's a cliche and every coach says it," said Ebbert. "I told the kids from Day One that I'm not going to tell them they have to win. I stress that every week. I tell them as long as they play better every week the wins will come."
"The team didn't quit when we fell behind tonight and they haven't quit all year. That's one thing about this team."
Despite watching a 12-point lead slip away on Homecoming Night, Lehighton proved how far its come from the start of the season by battling back for a 36-19 Mountain Valley Conference win over East Stroudsburg North.
The Indians, behind another solid performance from quarterback Josh Agosto, scored on its first four possessions of the second half to turn a 13-12 deficit into its second consecutive win.
Agosto broke free for a 58-yard scamper on the third play of the third quarter to set up a six-yard touchdown pass to Matt Rebovich. That gave the Tribe a lead they would never relinquish.
The Lehighton signal-caller burned the Timberwolves a few minutes later as a turnover eventually led to another Agosto-to-Rebovich scoring toss this one from 12 yards out that pushed the advantage to 24-13.
"Josh Agosto is an amazing quarterback," said receiver Jon Strauss, who had six catches including a pair of touchdowns. "He has one heckuva an arm. He can run too. He's a great in-and-out of the pocket quarterback. The line and the receivers made blocks for him. We're willing to do that because we know we he can do with the ball.
"Normally we roll Josh out, but they took that away," said Ebbert. "We told him to stay in the pocket and look for an opening and that's what he did."
Agosto did some more scrambling after Eastburg North cut into the lead. Gains of 19 and 10 yards aided an 11-play, 70-yard drive that ended with a 19-yard TD option pass from Anthony Farole to Strauss.
Rebovich's third score of the evening on a four-yard run with just under four minutes to play capped the night's scoring.
"It's totally a team effort," said Strauss. "Our offense is really moving the ball. We're playing Indian football now.
"We're loaded with weapons. We have four or five solid wide receivers. We have great halfbacks and our quarterback is outstanding. You also have to credit the line."
Also deserving credit is the Indians' defense.
While the 'D' was burned three times for long touchdown runs (totaling 160 yards), Lehighton allowed only 100 yards on North's other 37 carries.
"It's so difficult to defense (their triple option) because they run it all year long and you only have six days to prepare for it," said Ebbert. "The kids were disciplined and we preached that all week.
"We wanted to make their quarterback run the ball. He does a great job but of all the runners they have he's the one with the least experience. The defense did a great job stepping it up and holding a quick-score offense to just 19 points."