Wilson pulls away from Palmerton
With just over four minutes remaining defending Colonial League champion Wilson was clinging to a eight-point lead over Palmerton in the season opener for both on Friday night.
Then the Warriors used two long passes for touchdowns and any thoughts of a Bomber upset quickly diminished with Wilson grabbing a 28-6 win.
The Warriors actually rewarded head coach Bret Comp with his 100th victory and despite three touchdown passes, it was the defense that kept the Bombers from getting any offense going.
"I was very pleased with our effort," said Palmerton head coach Paul McArdle. "I thought the kids really, really came to play. It was a playoff atmosphere in Week One. It was hard-hitting, big defensive stops, back and forth. We just didn't get it done offensively. Our defense was on the field way too many times."
The Warriors actually ran 14 more plays than the Bombers and managed 16 first downs to just three by Palmerton.
Neither team found the end zone until Wilson quarterback Chris Cooper broke loose for a 22-yard touchdown after the Bombers put on a big pass rush with 21 seconds left in the half. Keenan Mease booted the first of his four PAT's on the night and the Warriors had a 7-0 advantage at halftime.
The Bombers took advantage of a big play at the start of the second half when Cody Silfies blocked a punt giving his team the ball on the Wilson 39. Zach Freed connected with Christian Marcin for a big completion down to the two. Fullback Levi Serfass bulled his way into the end zone with 8:34 left in the third quarter, but the extra point attempt was muffed keeping the score at 7-6.
It looked like the momentum was swinging in favor of the Bombers as Alex Vignone intercepted a Cooper pass on the first play after the TD on his own 45. But they failed to capitalize and had to punt back to the Warriors, who picked up some steam again.
Five plays later, Cooper hooked up with speedster Trey Robinson and he zipped through the Bomber defense for a 42-yard touchdown with 3:25 still left in the third quarter. Mease booted the PAT to make it 14-6.
Both teams battled toe-to-toe until the Warriors started a drive on their own 30 with backup quarterback Nick Smith replacing Cooper, who went to the sideline with leg cramps. Smith mastered a beautiful drive completing all five passes he threw with the last one a 30-yard completion to Sam Healey for six. Mease made it 21-6 with 4:15 left in the game.
Wilson managed one more score when Cooper found Roth Healey wide open for a 34-yard TD pass with 2:41 remaining and the "W" was packed away.
"The score doesn't indicate how close it was until the last half of the fourth quarter," said McArdle. "But that's Wilson. Wilson isn't going anywhere. They're going to win a lot of games this year.
"I'm pleased with our kids. We just have to get a little better on offense and when we do, I think we'll be tough to beat."