While Falcon football fans may have lamented Pennsbury's sudden demise in the 2013 District 1 Class AAAA tournament, the good news is that the Orange and Black has plenty of returning players to try and repeat the feat in its current campaign.
Oh, there's a few pieces from last year's team including linebacker Mycah Mollohan, d-lineman Bert Robinson, and running back Ronquay Smith, all of whom have graduated. And while quarterback Breon Clark has also departed the ranks after transferring outside the school district, the Falcons should have plenty of talent left over to launch another successful campaign.
For one, Suburban One League (SOL) National Conference First Team selection Charles Snorweah is back to lead the Ground and Pound offense down the field.
After biding his time at fullback behind 2012 graduates Shawn Pepper and Daquan Mack, Snorweah came into his own last year, helping Pennsbury capture a second straight SOL National Conference title.
Realignment of the SOL however, has put North Penn, Pennridge, CB South and Souderton into the same conference alongside the Falcons, Neshaminy, Abington and Bensalem. For old times' sake, Pennsbury will take on Council Rock South (Aug. 29) and CR North (Sept. 12) this season.
The Falcons are coming off consecutive 7-0 campaigns in the National Conference.
"We have to take care of the regular season and try to win a third consecutive league title — it will be tougher to do this year,' admitted head coach Galen Snyder. "Hopefully, at the end of the season, we'll be in a good position to move on and focus on the playoffs.'
Pennsbury went 10-2, overall last year, losing only its first game (Easton) and its last — a District 1 quarterfinal matchup with North Penn whom they'll face Oct. 19 in a league matchup in Lansdale.
The Falcons will need a healthy Snorweah if they are going to compete with the likes of the Knights. Since 1997, North Penn is an astounding 179-43 (.806) with six District One championships, nine appearances in the District One finals and two appearances in the PIAA finals with a PIAA championship in 2003. (1)
"The competition in the league has always been tough. Council Rock North made the playoffs last year and South was in the district championship a few years ago,' stated Snyder. "Some of these new teams are going to be tough too — North Penn is a state power.
"It was always a good league; it's probably a stronger one now.'
Snorweah, a four-year varsity starter, rushed for 1,476 yards on 145 carries and 22 touchdowns in 12 games last season. Now a senior, Snorweah was one part of a four-pronged Wing-T attack last season that included Smith, Clark and senior Raheem Thompson, a returning starter on offense.
While Snorweah — who has committed to Rutgers — will most likely get the bulk of the carries, he'll share that responsibility with Thompson, senior Victor Delgado and junior Daulton Hose, who started at linebacker last season.
Battling for Clark's old spot under center are junior Rob Daley and senior Cody Tabeek. Both return to the field with experience last year in the defensive backfield.
Pennsbury returns plenty of experience along the offensive line including seniors Austin O'Neill, Sam Raywood and Mason Houriet. Two other seniors — Brandon Pabon and Brandon Hogan — will also see time on the O-line.
The Falcons have a mixed bag of veterans and first-year starters along the D-line with juniors Nick Paragano and Jack Kenney returning along with juniors Joe Maurer and Jeremiah Wells stepping into a starting role for the first time.
Lining up at linebacker are Delgado and Hose on the outside along with Jordan O'Neill and Luke Snyder playing inside.
Defensive backs for Pennsbury include seniors Anthony Pitt and Joe Strong along with Daly, who threw a scare into Neshaminy last Halloween when he ran an interception back for a 45-yard touchdown to begin 31-3 thumping of the Redskins. Earlier in the season, he took a pick-six 80 yards for a touchdown versus Council Rock North. Tabeek — who ran an interception back 65 yards versus Abington — could also see time in the defensive backfield.
Junior Vinnie Ratamess and senior Tom Augustin will line up at tight end and wide receiver, respectively. Seniors Josh Leon and Mike Geary are back on the kick team.
The Falcons hold scrimmages with Perkiomen Valley (Aug. 16) and Archbishop Wood (Aug. 22) then open against Council Rock South in a non-league affair Aug. 29 in Newtown. Perk Valley earned a berth in the 2013 District 1-AAAA semifinals last year and Wood won its second Class AAA championship in three seasons last year.
Pennsbury has its home opener Sept. 5 vs. Philadelphia Public League rival Frankford, then is on the road against CR North, Souderton and Abington. Home games against Bensalem and Pennridge are sandwiched in between a season-ending triumvirate of North Penn, CB South and defending D-1 champion Neshaminy.
Looks like the Falcons have their work cut out for them.
1 — (SOURCE) Dennis C. Way, Times-Herald, Nov. 21, 2013
Date Opponent Kickoff Notes
Aug. 16: Perkiomen Valley (AAAA) 10 a.m. Scrimmage
Aug. 22: @ Archbishop Wood (AAA) 7 p.m. Scrimmage
Aug. 29: @ Council Rock South (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Sept. 5: Frankford (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: @ Council Rock North (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: @ Souderton Area* (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Sept. 27: @ Abington* (AAAA) 12 p.m.
Oct. 2: Bensalem* (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: Pennridge* (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: @ North Penn* (AAAA) 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 24: Central Bucks South* (AAAA) 7 p.m.
Oct. 31: @ Neshaminy* (AAAA) 7 p.m.
2013 Record: 10-2, overall; 7-0 SOL National
Date Opponent Score
Aug 30: Easton 28-38 (L)
Sep 07: @ Frankford 43-12 (W)
Sep 12: Downingtown East 26-14 (W)
Sep 20: @ Truman 42-7 (W)
Sep 27: Council Rock South 42-6 (W)
Oct 04: @ Abington 37-0 (W)
Oct 11: William Tennent 40-0 (W)
Oct 19: Council Rock North 42-8 (W)
Oct 25: @ Bensalem 57-14 (W)
Nov 01: Neshaminy 31-3 (W)
Nov 08: Upper Darby 55-20 (W)
Nov 15: North Penn 21-31 (L)
LAST 5 SEASONS
2013: 10-2, overall; 7-0 SOL National
2012: 9-3, 7-0
2011: 9-4, 5-2
2010: 5-5, 3-4
2009: 9-2, 6-1