Road Warriors: Pennridge Cruises Past Abington
There was nothing fancy about Pennridge’s Friday night performance at Abington.
The Rams merely dominated on both sides of the line of scrimmage as they coasted to a 38-15 win against their Ghosts hosts.
“Our main thing last week with the line was stopping the run,” said Pennridge junior defensive end Alex Schmidt. “We always talk about everyone working together. It was an all-around good effort with the defense.” Against Abington, Schmidt added 2.5 tackles for loss to his team lead.
It was the second time in seven days that Coach Jeff Hollenbach’s charges emerged with a key conference road win. Pennridge (4-2) beat Neshaminy in Langhorne 17-7 on Saturday the 3rd.
“What I really liked tonight were the linebackers were able to take away that power read play that Abington runs. They fake the sweep- so you have to protect that- but when the quarterback pulls and keeps it, it is such a good play,” Hollenbach commended. “I thought our linebackers did a nice job controlling that.
“The defensive line inside did a great job to keep the pressure on the quarterback and take away the run game,” Hollenback concluded. Abington had just 43 yards on 27 carries through the first three quarters.
Just like against the Redskins, the Ram defense sparkled on Friday, holding Abington (0-6) scoreless until the fourth quarter. Three times this fall, Pennridge has held their opponent to their season low scoring output.
“Everybody does their job. Nobody worries about other people doing their job,” Schmidt credited. “We make sure everything goes right. If you do that, you win the game.”
The Rams started the scoring by marching 63 yards on nine runs during their second drive. The drive capped when senior running back Judens Desrosiers crashed up the middle for a five yard scoring run.
Pennridge racked up 239 yards on the ground and averaged nearly six yards per carry. On a third-and-16 midway through the second quarter, Abington packed the box. Quarterback DeVon Balmer found a wide open Dan Hockman on a 34-yard touchdown bomb.
“It was just a ten-yard out and I saw there was no safety,” Hockman described. “I took it down the field and DeVon and I hooked up.”
Senior Hockman picked off an Abington pass in Pennridge territory one drive later. “I saw the receiver was doing a quick route and I jumped the route and took it down the sideline,” Hockman noted.
On the next play, Balmer connected with junior wide out Ryan Cuthbert on a 40-yard touchdown strike to make the score 21-0. And it was Cuthbert’s turn to mimic Hockman as the junior intercepted a pass at his own 14 to thwart another deep Ghost drive.
Junior Matt Mauer ended Pennridge’s opening second half drive with a beautiful 48-yard punt that was downed at the Abington one. That set up a three-and-out, which set up a short field, which set up Desrosiers racing 20 yards for a touchdown. Mauer added a 31-yard field goal to put the Rams up 31-0.
Abington got on the board when senior quarterback David Kretschmann completed a pass to junior Shakur Williams for a 14-yard score; Kretschmann’s conversion made it 31-8 with 7:21 remaining in the game. Pennridge’s Josh Pinkney and Abington’s Quadir Moon-Banks both added long touchdown runs to complete the scoring.
Abington’s 0-6 record does not need further analysis, yet Hollenbach and Pennridge did not take this game lightly.
“We were in this situation two years ago with Souderton,” Hollenbach reminded. “They were winless and we went over to their place and lost that game. It knocked us out of the playoffs and that was a horrible experience for us. We respect the athletes that they have and the program that (Abington coach) Tim (Sorber) runs. ”
There was no one offensive star for Pennridge. Pinkney’s 85 yards on 10 carries led the Rams.
Desrosiers, who entered the game as Pennridge’s leading rusher despite carrying less than 40 times all season, ran for 38 yards on eight carries. Ryan Gordon ran for 49 yards on five carries. The Rams’ running back by committee has served them well in 2015.
“I have some power guys. I have some speed guys,” noted Hollenbach. “I like our power game and I like our outside game too. DeVon does a nice job throwing the ball and Cuthbert is an outstanding receiver too so we have a lot of options.”
Kreschmann completed 13-of-23 passes for 103 yards. The quarterback was effective, yet Pennridge was able to keep passes in front of them.
“We prepared for the week with film and studying the routes,” said Hockman. “We had a good practice all week. We came clicking today.”
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