PENNINGTON — The Pennington football team has had a pretty rough go of it through the early part of the season. But it was all clear sailing Friday as the Red Raiders ran all over visiting Perkiomen School for a 32-6 victory.
The win had to be a gratifying one for Pennington head coach Jerry Eure, whose team has struggled to generate offense all season against teams that are usually physically larger.
"The kids played well,' Eure said of his Raiders. "They improved on their reads and their tackling. It's fun to see them improve like that week to week. I think (our line) has improved in their fundamentals and I think after playing teams that were bigger and stronger than them it was a relief to finally go against a team of their own caliber.
"What we try to instill in the kids is the idea that they have to get better every week. That's the only thing we can control. Now, are we ready for Bristol next week? I think we will probably have to get better.'
It was a disappointing result for the Panthers and coach Tom Calvario, especially after last week's 26-6 defeat to Nativity BVM.
"They were definitely more athletic than us,' Calvario said. "Even though we have a lot of seniors, we've got a lot of inexperience. I told the kids that (Pennington) had some good athletes. As you can see, we aren't very athletic at all, although I thought it would have been closer than it was.
"They were a better team than us. They were ready and we weren't.'
From the opening play, Pennington displayed a tremendous speed advantage over the Panthers, who seemed to be caught flat footed as the Red Raiders' Jalen Daniels ran wild in the first half, picking up 120 yards on 13 carries, including runs of 29 and 49 yards.
Perkiomen never had a chance to load up the box against Daniels as Pennington quarterback Greg Oldsey was able to find his favorite receiver Moses Vigo for gains of 51, 24 and 23 yards and added another 39-yard reception to Daniels.
"The read on us was that we couldn't move the ball and that our offense left the defense in bad position,' Oldsey said. "That may have been true at times but we wanted to show that we could score both in the air and on the ground.
"I've been taking the time getting experience in the first few games,' he added about his taking over the starting quarterback job this season. "Now I think I'm growing into it.'
Oldsey and his offense unleashed something of a blitzkrieg on Perkiomen as Pennington made short work of covering 66 yards on five plays for a touchdown on its first possession. The 51-yard pass play to Vigo and a 17-yard run by Daniels set up Cameron Warner's touchdown from one yard out.
From there, the Red Raiders were off to the races as they recovered a fumble to set up a second score on a two yard touchdown pass from Oldsey to Marcellus Morris and three plays later defensive lineman Nathan Zavanelli scooped up a Perkiomen fumble on the Panther 23-yard line and ran it all the way in for a touchdown and an 18-0 lead.
Pennington added two more touchdowns in the second quarter on a 23-yard touchdown pass to Vigo and a 3-yard scoring run by Daniels, which was set up by his 49-yard run one play earlier.
Perkiomen's offense showed some signs of life late in the contest. After a Panther defensive hold that gave them the ball at their own two, Grant Briddell broke off a 68-yard run before the Perkiomen drive died out on the Pennington 25.
Then, a series later, the Panthers got on the board as freshman running back Josh Cruz went 46 yards up the middle for his team's only touchdown.
Pennington Prep 32
Perkiomen School 6
Perkiomen School 0 0 0 6 - 6
Pennington Prep 18 14 0 0 -32
PP-Warner 1 run (pass failed)
PP-Morris 2 pass from Oldsey (run failed)
PP-Zavanelli 23 fumble recovery (run failed)
PP-Vigo 23 pass from Oldsey (Morris pass from Oldsey)
PP-Daniels 3 run (run failed)
PS-Cruz 46 run (kick failed)
First Downs 12 1
Rushes-Yards 38-223 16-141
Passing 5-8-0 1-4-0
Passing Yards 138 2
Fumbles-Lost 7-2 0-0
Sacks-Yards 1-10 0-0
Penalties-Yards 7-55 2-20
Punts-Avg. 0-0 3-31-3
Perkiomen School: Briddell, 5-73; Cruz, 2-45, 1 TD; Aaron, 4-22; Fosbenner, 2-1; Scotto, 3-0.
Pennington Prep: Daniels, 13-120, 1 TD; Chang, 7-34; Warner, 6-31, 1 TD; Sistrunk-Lewis, 5-17; Gosling, 4-11; Oldsey, 1-8; Maley, 1-2.
Perkiomen School: Scotto, 1-4-2.
Pennington Prep: Oldsey 5-8-138, 2 TDs.
Perkiomen School: Fosbender, 1-2.
Pennington Prep: Vigo, 3-98, 1 TD; Daniels, 1-39; Morris, 1-2, 1 TD.
Sacks: Pennington Prep-Meyer-Hanover 1.