The Philipsburg-Osceola football team allowed 412 yards of total offense on Friday evening, including 273 on the ground as the Mounties fell to Chestnut Ridge 48-7.
Things went south in a hurry for P-O as the Lions ran back the opening kickoff for a 97-yard touchdown, and Chestnut Ridge cornerback Colby Hillegass intercepted a screen pass and took it back 39 yards on the Mounties’ first possession.
“We got quite a jump-start with the kickoff return and the pick-6, and both of those occurred before we even ran an offensive play,” Chestnut Ridge coach Max Shoemaker said. “That certainly helped us get off on the right foot. We just built from there and had a real good first half.
“I thought our kids executed well in the first half, and they did what they needed to do. I was pleased with their execution and their performance and once they got up, they handled things well.”
After P-O had a three-and-out on its second possession, Chestnut Ridge responded with its first offensive score.
Lions quarterback Tyler Wiley connected with Bryan Feather on a sideline route, and Feather hustled to the end zone as Chestnut Ridge took a 21-0 lead halfway through the first quarter.
The Mounties once again had to punt on their next drive, but got a break as Aaron Boumerhi’s 54-yard punt was fumbled and recovered by P-O at the Lions’ 16-yard line.
After a pair of carries that brought up third down, Mountie quarterback Jake Anderson hit Tanner Lamb on a streak in the back corner of the end zone for the lone Mountie score of the evening. Boumerhi’s extra point was good.
“We had been working at a couple things, and it looked like a good time to get it to Lamb,” Philipsburg-Osceola coach Michael Soyster said. “Anderson just got him the ball.”
The Lions got the job done on the ensuing drive through the air as Wiley connected on passes of 17 and 27 yards before finishing the series with a 22-yard strike to Jay Grubb. Chestnut Ridge led 28-7 after the first quarter.
Chestnut Ridge only threw the ball three times from the second quarter through the end of the game as it got the running game going. Wiley scored twice in the stanza on options — once from 27 yards and the other from 64.
“We were trying to attack their perimeter,” Shoemaker said. “I think they were prepared to play us between the tackles.
“The big run that Tyler Wiley had came off of a great fake to the fullback and he got crushed. That’s exactly how you want the option to work. It was so well-executed.”
The Lions pounded in one more score before halftime as Trent Crouse plunged his way past the goal line. The extra point was blocked, as Chestnut Ridge went to halftime leading 48-7.
The running game became a factor for the Mounties in the second half, despite it not showing on the scoreboard. P-O gained 84 of its 123 rushing yards in the final 24 minutes of play.
Running back Kyle Hawkins had 25 yards on five carries, with most coming in the fourth quarter.
“(The running game) is a work in progress,” Soyster said. “Kyle Hawkins showed a pretty nice burst. We ran some plays effectively. We’ll continue to work on it and continue to get better.”
Philipsburg-Osceola dipped to 0-5. The Mounties host Penns Valley on Homecoming on Friday.