RADNOR — Garnet Valley's offense exploded for 28 points in the second quarter en route to a 42-8 win over Radnor in a Central League matchup at Prevost Field last night.
The victory upped the Jaguars' record to 4-0 (3-0 Central) while the Raiders fell to 1-3 (1-2) on the season.
Radnor hung with Garnet Valley for the first quarter, trailing just 7-0. Vincent Razzano scored on a 17-yard run at the 8:47 mark to give the Jaguars the lead.
The Raiders looked like they were going to answer on a 13-play drive, but it fizzled at the Garnet Valley 45-yard line.
Radnor continued to hold its own, stopping the next Garnet Valley drive at its own 45.
Then the Jaguars offense woke up.
Led by its offensive line, Garnet Valley scored on its next four possessions, including a 27-yard TD pass from Christian Portale to Zach Nelson, a 1-yard run by Michael Bruette, a 20-yard dart to the end zone by Jake Irving and a 12-yard pass to Bruette from Portale.
The Jaguars led 35-0 at halftime.
"Our offensive line has been playing extremely well,' Garnet Valley head coach Mike Ricci said. "Our entire team has been playing well. We did a really nice job of executing on offense and defense as well. When you do that, good things happen. We are fortunate that we've been able to do that.'
Garnet Valley' offensive line is Shane Stabinski at center plus linemen Ted Field, Brandon Hitner, Connor Walsh, David Bertone and tight end John McGrogan.
"You always have to respect your opponent. You can't just overlook anyone,' Stabinski said. "Any team can beat you. You just have to work at practice and we do that every week.'
Ricci said keeping an even keel with his players is important, especially considering Garnet Valley's great start.
"We never get overconfident,' Ricci said. "We have so much respect for the teams that we play. We really try and work on what we can control and what we can control is us and our effort and our execution. We just try and focus on that, and that eliminates looking ahead or looking anywhere else. We have such respect for Radnor, they played a great game last week against Springfield, they had a good scheme on offense and defense tonight.'
Ricci singled out linebacker Tyler Shankle for leading the Jaguars defense. "He's been playing out of mind,' the coach said.
The Jaguars amassed 423 yards of total offense with Irving rushing for 87 yards on four carries and a score. Portale finished 5 of 7 for 85 yards and two TD passes.
Radnor head coach Tom Ryan said the drive that stalled in the first quarter did not take the wind out of his team's sails.
"I just think they are a very good football team,' Ryan said. "Our kids played hard as they've done all year. I'm proud of them, but Garnet is a very good football team. ... They are very physical. ... We gave it our best shot and we'll get ready for next week.'
Despite being down 35-0 after three quarters, the Raiders still fought to get on the scoreboard.
Vinnie Kelly hit Andrew Major over the middle for a 5-yard touchdown pass on fourth down and 7:20 left in the game. Ben Cohen took a bad snap and, on a perfect fire drill play, hit TJ Hockersmith for a two-point conversion making the score 35-8.
The touchdown was against Garnet Valley's backups but Ryan said it was the heart and effort he was looking for from his players.
"We didn't quit,' Ryan said. "This is a really good group I have, there's no quitters. We're excited to play Upper Darby next week.'
Major led the Raiders offense with four catches for 29 yards and the TD while Dan Kurtyka hauled in two of Kelly's six completions for 57 yards.
The Raiders' first three games were all very close: A five-point loss to Carroll, a seven-point win over Harriton and a six-point loss to Springfield.
Ryan said getting outplayed by one of the top teams in the entire Delaware Valley is not going to ruin the positive experience this season has been for his players so far.
"We're just trying to get better each week, have fun and play high school football,' Ryan said with a smile. "Out spirits aren't broken, we're ready to rock, we're ready to go next week.'