Palmyra blows by Boiling Springs, 41-19
PALMYRA - Bye weeks: Momentum killers or well-timed opportunities to rest and refocus?
For the Palmyra football team, the off week it enjoyed turned out to be a little of both. But in the end, more of the latter than the former.
After sitting out last week on a bye after a 4-0 start, the Cougars returned to action Friday night in somewhat uneven fashion, flashing periods of brilliance and dominance as well as bouts of inconsistency and miscues in a 41-19 win over winless Boiling Springs in a Mid-Penn Capital Division battle at Buck Swank Stadium.
There was plenty of good - touchdowns in all three phases of the game from versatile senior back Carl Reigle and a rushing and passing touchdown from QB Peter Robertson - bad - Palmyra was outgained 355 to 282 and surrendered more points and big plays Friday than it had in the first four games combined - and ugly - 3 turnovers and 7 drive-killing penalties for 69 yards.
But hey, the Cougars are 5-0 and headed for a big-time divisional showdown at Middletown next week, a position many a team would kill to be in.
"This was one of our best weeks of practice, actually," said Reigle of the impact of the bye on Palmyra. "We came out firing and then kinda slowed down. I don't know what happened there. But I think (the bye) helped us. We got to relax and rest up. We're definitely where we want to be."
"It's hard to say. The jury's always out until you watch the video," Palmyra coach Chris Pope said to the bye question. "We won, so that's good. And we did get some people healed up (from injury). Everyone seems to be back and fresh. I don't think it hurt us, I'll put it that way.
"I think it was a story of highs and lows. There were times when I thought our offense and defense looked great. But then I thought there were times when we gave up big plays and let them hang around and get back in the game."
It certainly began well enough for Palmyra. After a scoreless first quarter for both teams, the Cougars ran off 20 straight points to begin the second courtesy of a short 27-yard punt return TD by Reigle, a 7-yard scoring pass from Peter Robertson to Braden Vernet and an 11-yard TD burst by Devan Sosnoski.
The Bubblers would get to 20-7 at the half on a 60-yard touchdown dash by Bryan Malone, and ultimately to within 27-19 when Malone bulled in from the 1 with 2:45 to play, but Reigle put a stop to the comeback bid with a 20-yard rushing TD with 1:51 left and a 21-yard pick six 18 seconds later.
"Now we got the big one, Middletown, next week," Reigle said. "We just gotta work hard this week and get ready for that one."
And try to get better while at the same time not nitpicking at 5-0 too much.
"We shouldn't complain," Pope said with a chuckle. "We're 5-0."
Palmyra 41, Boiling Springs 19
Boiling Springs _ 0 _ 7 _ 6 _ 6 _ — _ 19
Palmyra _ 0 _ 20 _ 7 _ 14 _ — _ 41
P — Reigle 27 punt return (Weidler kick)
P — Vernet 7 pass from Robertson kick (Weidler kick)
P — Sosnoski 11 run (kick failed)
BS — Malone 60 run (Walker kick)
P — Robertson 1 run (Bowman kick)
BS — Foreman 6 pass from Mancuso (kick failed)
BS — Malone 1 run (Foreman kick)
P — Reigle 20 run (Bowman kick)
P — Reigle 21 interception return (Bowman kick)
_ Boiling Springs _ Palmyra
First downs _ 12 _ 16
Rushes-yards _ 36-210 _ 29-136
Passing _ 10-28-1 _ 8-15-1`
Passing yards _ 145 _ 146
Total yards _ 355 _ 282
Punts _ 5-25.6 _ 4-28.8
Fumbles-lost _ 1-1 _ 3-2
Penalties-yards _ 3-25 _ 7-69
Rushing — BS: Malone 24-167, Mancuso 7-29, Kelley 4-19, Karper 1- (-5)., P: Reigle 6-47, Rhette 8-46, Sosnoski 5-32, Robertson 7-15, Templin 3- (-4).
Passing — .BS: Mancuso 10-28-1 145., P: Robertson 8-15-1-146.
Receiving — .BS: Walker 3-81, Caldwell 2-23, Malone 2-12, Kelley 1-17, Karper 1-6, Foreman 1-6. P: Vernet 4-84, Rhette 2-39, Cooper 1-12, Reigle 1-11.