NEWTOWN SQUARE — Delaware County Christian School had to face a one-win Calvary Christian team Saturday night at Marple Newtown High School.
Records can be deceiving, because the Cougars came ready to play and leave town with a Bicentennial League upset.
In the first half, the Knights may have underestimated their opponent just a bit. Junior fullback Alex Linton didn't mince words about the Knights' so-so first-half performance.
"In the beginning,' he said, "they came out and punched us in the face,' he said.
Not literally, of course, but the Knights were certainly reeling early. After 24 minutes, the Knights and Cougars were tied. Only two touchdowns were scored, and it appeared that Delco Christian's high-powered wishbone offense would be held in check.
After regrouping in the locker room at halftime, the Knights took control on their first possession and never looked back. With a 35-14 triumph, the Knights wrapped up a 7-2 regular season in style and move on to the District One/District 12 Class A subregional next week. Delco Christian's first playoff opponent will be determined this morning at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School when the District One steering committee finalize the postseason brackets for all classifications.
The Knights outscored the Cougars (1-7), 28-7, in the second half. Defensively, the Knights were very good at stopping Calvary's ground attack, which managed only 53 yards on 25 carriers. Calvary Christian quarterback Josh Reichenbach had success throwing the ball (11-for-14, 201 yards), but outside of an 84-yard touchdown strike to wide receiver Sam Heath midway through the fourth quarter, the Knights' defensive backs recovered nicely after allowing Reichenbach and Co. to hurt them through the air in the first half.
"You have to give (Calvary) credit. They had some short fields, were able to hit a big pass or two and really moved the ball well against us,' Knights coach Drew Pearson said. "We made adjustments, told our kids to play football one way — the DC football way — and let the results control themselves. The kids fought. They really wanted to honor the seniors (in the event) this is our seniors last game on this field.'
One senior, running back Henry Miller, contributed a pair of touchdown runs in the second half and registered 57 yards on nine carries. Miller had the scoring scamper that put the Knights ahead for good, and laid out for a 32-yard catch on a throw by Gator Grim to set up DCCS's third score of the night. "I knew I had to catch it,' Miller said. "I was thinking, I knew I had to go and get the ball.'
Miller also had a strong night at linebacker and defensive back for the Knights. Senior captain Ron Burrell also found another gear after halftime (55 yards on five carries) and Linton chipped in with a 45-yard scoring run that essentially put the game out of reach.
"This week, being the fullback, I focus on being as speedy as I can,' he said. "I usually just lower my head and get as many yards as I can.'
Hey, whatever works.
Sophomore Amir Dorsey led all rushers with 101 yards on only nine carries as the Knights produced 431 yards of total run offense. The Knights' ground-and-pound style will be difficult to contain in the Class A postseason.