LANCASTER >> Chalk it up to a little bit of nerves.
After waiting an extra 45 minutes for its 2015 season opener to kickoff due to lightning in the area, the Dallastown football team had a few hiccups in the opening half, but the Wildcats found their rhythm in the final two quarters, out-rushing Lancaster Catholic on their way to a 26-14 win.
"First half was just a lot of nerves and a lot of feeling it out," Dallastown head coach Kevin Myers said. "Lancaster Catholic came out on fire, they had a lot to prove, but I think we wore them down."
Cade Gold led the Wildcats both in the huddle and on the stat sheet, as the senior quarterback ran for 120 yards on 11 carries — including a 79-yard touchdown run — and completed 10 passes for 123 yards.
"Cade's a great leader," Myers said. "He's a calming influence. There's expectations on him and that's going to weigh on him, but he came out in the second half and you could just see in his face that he was loose and he made some awesome plays."
Dallastown swung the momentum in its favor right out of the break, scoring on its first possession of the third quarter.
Junior Zion DeVance recovered a Crusaders' fumble on the ensuing kickoff, spurring the Wildcat offense and leading to another Dallastown touchdown to give the Wildcats a double-digit lead.
"(Zion) was kind of an unknown coming into practice, but he had a great game," Myers said. "He may not be super big, but he's tough and he made some big plays tonight. I told him that's the kind of plays we expect and need out of him all year."
The defensive line, which returns just one starter at the same position from the 2014 squad, was another positive Myers saw on the field tonight.
"I was pretty pleased with how they played, they had four blocked passes and some big tackles," Myers said. "I was proud we didn't hang our head, because we have done that over the summer. We showed some maturity tonight."
DT — Cade Gold 79 run (kick failed), 10:24.
LC — Andrew Bertz 76 pass from Bryan Downey (Connor Rathsam kick), 8:26.
DT — Jawaun McMillian 22 pass from Gold (Anthony Garcia kick), 8:13.
DT — Jack Marks 1 run (kick failed), 5:20.
DT — Gold 5 run (Garcia kick), 1:41.
LC — Josh Houser 14 pass from Downey (Rathsam kick), 0:12.
DTLC First downs1313 Rushes-yards28-21624-109 Passing10-21-021-35-1 Passing yards123243Total yards339352 Punts5-37.54-31.25 Fumbles-lost1-12-1 Penalties-yards7-572-10
Rushing — DT, Cade Gold 11-120, Connor Green 2-5, Dillon Callahan 6-33, Zion DeVance 6-49, Jack Marks 3-9. LC, Bryan Downey 14-99, Kurt Harnish 9-13, Andrew Bertz 1-(-3).
Passing — DT, Gold 10-21-0-123. LC, Downey 21-35-1-243.
Receiving — DT, Jakob Jansen 5-53, Jawaun McMillian 3-67, Drake Fleet 1-1, Kyle Kline 1-2. LC, Bertz 4-109, Josh Houser 4-36, Christian Sweigert 5-27, Ricky Poillon 4-43, Thomas Jimenez 1-8, Andrew Kirchner 2-13, Quincy Clark 1-7.