See highlights from the Fighting Irish win on Oct. 7.
As the ball sailed out the back of the end zone, so did all of the momentum Littlestown had built for 33 minutes.
The previously undefeated Thunderbolts controlled the entire first half and most of the second quarter to build a seven-point lead. But late in the fourth quarter, when the Bolts snapped the ball through their own end zone for a safety while attempting a punt, that mistake set the stage for York Catholic to come back and win, 29-20.
The Fighting Irish capitalized on Littlestown's error, scoring two touchdowns in a three-minute span on their next two possessions. The first came on a 15-yard throw from Dan Yokemick to Ryan Sewell on the drive following the safety. Yokemick then intercepted a Littlestown pass to set up an 11-yard run by Jakkar Kinard.
“The safety was a big play. For us to get those two points, then drive down and get the score was huge," York Catholic coach Eric Depew said. “We want to get back to the district championship game. This is a huge win here for that. Our guys showed a lot of heart. I love these guys. We have a team that loves each other and cares and works hard and sticks together.”
Kinard ran for 132 yards on the evening, and he tacked on a second touchdown late in the fourth quarter to ice the victory. Yokemick ran for 66 yards and touchdown, and threw for 147 yards.
Seven of Yokemick's 13 completions went to senior receiver Brenden Kennedy, who returned to the team this year after sitting out last season to focus on baseball. Yokemick texted Kennedy during the summer, the quarterback said, and convinced Kennedy to return to the team after the pair met up and threw some routes. Kennedy has since committed to play baseball at Mount St. Mary's University.
“He’s a tough, physical kid with great hands," Depew said of Kennedy. "It’s a big plus for us to have him on the team.”
Both teams are now 5-1 on the season, but York Catholic moves into first place in YAIAA Division III with a perfect 3-0 record in divisional play. The Thunderbolts remain one game out of the division lead and still very much in contention for a district playoff spot.
“If I told every kid on the team and every coach on the team before the season, ‘OK, you’re 5-1 after Week 6, will you take it?’ Everyone would have said ‘Yes,’" Littlestown coach Mike Lippy said. "I’ve got to look at the positive; that’s a quality football team and I think we played them down to the wire. We’ve got four games left in our league and we’ve got to get ready for those week in and week out. I still think we’ve got a nice football team, but we have room to get better, like everybody does, but I like our chances going into each week from here on out.”
YC -- Dan Yokemick 17 run (Nick Basile kick), 7:02.
L -- Tyler Barthel 63 pass from Tanner Noble (Alex Potts kick), 1:59.
L -- Wes Storey 17 run (Potts kick), 2:50.
YC -- Safety, 2:37.
YC -- Ryan Sewell 15 pass from Yokemick (pass failed), 0:01.
YC -- Jakkar Kinard 11 run (Basile kick), 9:32
L -- Austin Watters 3 run (run failed), 7:34.
YC -- Jakkar Kinard 4 run (Basile kick), 1:41/
Rushing — L, Wes Storey 11-50, Drew Matthews 17-65, Austin Watters 3-11, Tanner Noble 4-(-9), Sam Watkins 1-(-1). YC, Jakkar Kinard 23-132, Dan Yokemick 18-66, Manuel Montes 1-4.
Passing — L, Noble 6-17-96-1, Jakob Lane 0-1-0-0. YC, Yokemick 13-21-147-1, Brenden Kennedy 0-1-0-0.
Receiving — L, Tyler Barthel 5-88, Ben Snouffer 1-8. YC, Brenden Kennedy 7-89, Dimitri Amalfitano 2-17, Ryan Sewell 2-33, Kweku Parker 1-0, Riley Brennan 1-8.