The York Suburban football team went from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows in the span of a single week.
Last Friday, the Trojans downed Eastern York by 21 points to go unbeaten in YAIAA Division II and claim the divisional crown for the second consecutive season. It had been 54 seasons since a York Suburban football team had claimed back-to-back championships of any kind.
The Trojans began the District 3 Class 4A playoffs on Friday evening with a home game against No. 5 seed Lampeter-Strasburg, a team coming in with back-to-back losses to end the regular season. Fourth-seeded York Suburban struggled to get anything going against the Pioneers and saw its season ended with a 48-0 loss at Dick May Field.
"It's a shame we played as bad as we did," said York Suburban coach Andy Loucks. "We were outplayed in every facet of the game. That's a shame because it is not a representation of these kids. It's just not."
York Suburban (8-3) entered Friday's game on an eight-game winning streak after dropping its first two games of the season to York Catholic and Northeastern. During that run, the Trojans defense had five times limited opponents to two touchdowns or fewer, while the offense rolled up an average of 35.5 points per game.
"We played well last week (at Eastern York) in every phase," Loucks said. "We have been playing well for quite some time. To come out and play like we did tonight ... I just wasn't expecting this either. I don't think the kids were either. We had a pretty good week of practice and seemed comfortable with what we were doing and we just laid an egg. It happens."
York Suburban arguably hadn't seen a quarterback as proficient as Lampeter-Strasburg junior Todd Shelley.
The 6-foot-1, 200-pound Shelley threw for 22 touchdowns during the regular season. Friday, he threw for four touchdowns and amassed 190 yards in the air on 14-of-22 passing. Seven Pioneers receivers were on the end of those passes, but none played a larger role than senior Chad Gaudino.
Gaudino, a 6-0, 185-pounder who caught 53 passes for 1,000 yards and nine touchdowns during the regular season, hauled in five passes for 67 yards against York Suburban. He scored on a 23-yard pass in the second quarter and a six-yard pass in the third quarter. Gaudino also intercepted two York Suburban passes on defense
Lampeter-Strasburg (7-4) was up 21-0 at halftime and took the opening drive of the second half 68 yards in 15 plays, ending in Gaudino's second touchdown. After Suburban went three and out, Gaudino set up the Pioneers nicely with a 35-yard punt return, and the visitors busted the game open quickly with a 22-yard pass to running back Shane Lawler.
Friday's game was the first shutout of the season for York Suburban, which had boasted one of the YAIAA's three 1,000-yard passers in senior quarterback Ben Igo, as well as a top-10 receiver in senior Colin Deardorff and a top-12 running back in senior Jadon Haynes.
Outside of three big plays — a 34-yard run by senior Teague Hoffman on the second play of the game, a 50-yard reception in the first quarter by Deardorff and 30-yard catch by Zach Weinstein in the third quarter — the Trojans were held to 81 yards of offense. York Suburban came into the game No. 4 in yards of offense and No. 5 in points scored in the YAIAA.
"We missed open receivers, we missed opportunities to catch the ball, and we made some crucial drops," Loucks said. "I don't know if they were nervous or if they were trying too hard. I just don't know. I do know we have never played like that in my two years here. It just wasn't there."
L-S -- Caleb Lopez 12 pass from Todd Shelley (Peyton Denlinger kick), 4:48
L-S -- Chad Gaudino 23 pass from Shelley (Denlinger kick), 11:29
L-S -- Lopez 12 run (Denlinger kick), 5:35
L-S -- Gaudino 6 pass from Shelley (Denlinger kick), 5:53
L-S -- Shane Lawler 22 pass from Shelley (kick failed), 2:05
L-S -- Justin Edwards 5 run (Denlinger kick), 3:32
L-S -- Lopez 32 interception return (Denlinger kick), :52
Rushing — Lampeter-Strasburg, Shane Lawler 14-87, Todd Shelley 5-33, Justin Edwards 6-19, Alex Stoeffler 3-9, Nathaniel Kreider 2-6, Joey Underwood 1-5, Cam Niemeyer 4-4, Drew Smith 1-3. York Suburban, Teague Hoffman 7-60, Janner Torres 6-35, Jadon Haynes 5-4, Ben Igo 7-(-22), Maxwell Reinecker 2-(-27).
Passing — Lampeter-Strasburg, Shelley 14-22, 190 yds., 4 TD, 0 Int., Edwards 1-1, 15 yds., 0 TD, 0 Int.; York Suburban, Igo 9-20, 132 yds., 0 TD, 3 Int., Reinecker 2-3, 13 yds., 0 TD, 1 Int.
Receiving — Lampeter-Strasburg, Lawler 3-68, Chad Gaudino 5-67, Jeff Elser 2-19, Stoeffler 1-15, Niemeyer 1-14, Lopez 2-13, Kreider 1-9. York Suburban, Colin Deardorff 1-50, Zach Weinstein 1-30, Hoffman 3-21, Haynes 3-19, T.J. Hoover 1-11, Willie Batty 1-7, Keyvon Wright 1-7.