Pottsgrove running back Marquis Barefield (25) rushes for a touchdown in the first half against Phoenixville during their District 1-AAA playoff game
Pottsgrove running back Marquis Barefield (25) rushes for a touchdown in the first half against Phoenixville during their District 1-AAA playoff game Friday. (Photo by John Strickler/The Mercury)

LOWER POTTSGROVE — Pottsgrove continued its unbeaten ways in the opening round of the District 1-AAA football playoffs Friday night on the Falcons' field, dispatching Phoenixville, 49-7.

The top-seeded Falcons built a 28-0 cushion after the first period and rolled over the Phantoms, a Pioneer Athletic Conference colleague and the No. 8 seed in the playoffs.

Pottsgrove (9-0, 11-0) controlled the point of attack and limited the Phantoms to 103 total yards and one fourth-quarter touchdown. The Falcons held a 42-0 lead by halftime, and Pottsgrove coach Rick Pennypacker was able to rest most of his starters the rest of the way.

The Falcons had beaten the Phantoms, 52-14, in Pottsgrove's Homecoming game back on Oct. 18 in their PAC-10 regular season meeting.

"We did what we had to do,' said Pennypacker. "We survived the first round. It was hard to get the kids up for a team they just beat a couple weeks ago. We will have to play better if we want to survive next week.'

Pottsgrove will prepare to face No. 4 seed Academy Park, which beat No. 5 Interboro in another first-round contest, next Friday night in a second-round home game.

Pottsgrove's Marquis Barefield carried the pigskin just seven times, but four of them went for touchdowns. Barefield had scoring runs of 64, 20, 7 and 9 yards. He completed an abbreviated stint with 116 yards rushing and four scores on seven attempts.

Pottsgrove's offensive line opened the holes as needed as the Falcons totaled 283 yards rushing and six TDs while finishing with 325 yards of total offense. Sene Polamalu and Tyrell Barr also ran for scores for the hosts, who had nine players run the football. Also, quarterback Riley Michaels hit Michael Fowler with a 28-yard scoring pass.

Pottsgrove’s Tom Sephakis (75) sacks Phoenixville’s Donnie Jackson in the first quarter during Friday’s District 1-AAA playoff game.
Pottsgrove's Tom Sephakis (75) sacks Phoenixville's Donnie Jackson in the first quarter during Friday's District 1-AAA playoff game. (Photo by John Strickler/The Mercury)

Jalen Mayes intercepted a pass for the Falcons, and Polamalu registered a sack. The Falcons also recovered a pair of Phoenixville fumbles.

"We will have to have more intensity,' said Pennypacker. "We'll be ready. Phoenixville was outmanned. Our offensive line played well and our defense played pretty well, too. They didn't have a first down until late in the first half.'

Phoenixville (4-4, 4-7) continued to gain experience with its younger players while building for the future. It marked the Phantom seniors' third straight trip to the district playoffs, and that is a feat that has never been accomplished before at Phoeniville. The Phantoms have added a non-league game at Quakertown for next Friday evening and then will close out their season with the traditional Thanksgiving Game against Spring-Ford at home.

Phoenixville's lone touchdown came on a two-yard run by senior fullback Justin McDougal with 7:23 remaining in the fourth quarter. Sophomore Matt Palubinsky ended the fray with 71 yards rushing on 18 tries.

"There is obviously a lot to be proud of, and the season is not over,' said Phoenixville coach Bill Furlong. "Pottsgrove is a good team. Our younger guys are doing it. Some of them are banged up. But they are getting some quality experience.'

Pottsgrove senior linebacker Tyrone Parker played another huge game along with fellow linebacker Jeff Adams. Along with his double-figure tackles, Parker recovered a fumble and partially blocked a punt. Devon Fink also had a fumble recovery for the Falcons.

NOTES

Pottsgrove’s Sene Polamalu sacks Phoenixville quarterback Donnie Jackson in the second quarter of Friday’s District 1-AAA playoff game. (Photo
Pottsgrove's Sene Polamalu sacks Phoenixville quarterback Donnie Jackson in the second quarter of Friday's District 1-AAA playoff game. (Photo by John Strickler/The Mercury)

Pottsgrove's Barr garnered 53 yards on six plays, Orrin Toomer 42 on six carries and Fink 37 yards on five snaps. ... Fowler had two receptions for 42 yards and also punted just one time for 48 yards.

FOOTBALL

DISTRICT 1-AAA PLAYOFFS

First Round

Pottsgrove 49

Phoenixville 7

Phoenixville 0 0 0 7 - 7

Pottsgrove 28 14 0 7 - 49

Pg-Barefield 64 run (Klinger kick)

Pg-Barefield 20 run (Klinger kick)

Pg-Barefield 7 run (Klinger kick)

Pg-Barefield 9 run (Klinger kick)

Pg-Fowler 28 pass from Michaels (Klinger kick)

Pg-Polamalu 2 run (Klinger kick)

Px-McDougal 2 run (Wertman kick)

Pg-Barr 1 run (Bleakley kick)

Team Statistics

Phoenixville Pottsgrove

First downs 7 13

Rushing yards 87 283

Passing yards 16 42

Total yards 103 325

Passes C-A-I 2-8-1 2-5-0

Fumbles-lost 4-2 3-1

Penalties-yards 5-35 5-45

Punts-avg. 4-22.8 1-48

Individual Statistics

RUSHING

Phoenixville: Palubinsky 18-71; Bennick 1-17; McDougal 9-15, 1 TD; Brock 1-3; Ciaverelli 1-3; Jackson 5-(-8); Luzins 1-(-14).

Pottsgrove: Barefield 7-116, 4 TDs; Barr 6-53, 1 TD; Toomer 6-42; Fink 5-37; Polamalu 2-23, 1 TD; Mandia 1-5; Michaels 4-4; Mayes 2-2; Kelsy 1-1.

PASSING

Phoenixville: Jackson 2-8-16, 1 INT.

Pottsgrove: Michaels 2-4-42, 1 TD; Mandia 0-1-0.

RECEIVING

Phoenixville: Gallow 1-16; Palubinsky 1-0.

Pottsgrove: Fowler 2-42, 1 TD.

Interceptions: Phoenixville-None. Pottsgrove-Mayes.

Sacks: Phoenixville-None. Pottsgrove-Polamalu.