Chris Masse on Football: The tradition continues for Shore this year | News, Sports, Jobs

0

[ad_1]


DAVE KENNEDY/Sun-Gazette Jersey Shore’s Kooper Peacock runs the ball during kickoff against Shamokin at Jersey Shore.

Almost all teams adopt slogans. But without action, it’s just words.

As Jersey Shore drastically changed its culture over the past decade, it created the motto, “Tradition never ends”. And year after year, the Bulldogs live those words.

The 2022 season continues Friday when Jersey Shore meets Allentown Central Catholic in the first round of the state tournament at Millionaire Stadium in Williamsport. These hungry Bulldogs (12-0) want to do more but they’ve already upped the program’s tradition.

Jersey Shore won its fifth consecutive District 4 class AAAA championship last Thursday, beating Selinsgrove, 35-7. The Bulldogs also won a fifth consecutive HAC-I title earlier this season, remaining unbeaten in the league for a fourth straight year. They also produced a third straight regular season and will enter 2023 having won 29 straight games there.

Players continue to graduate, but tradition certainly does not.

“I think the culture here has been created and we want to continue to develop it,” Hadyn Packer said after scoring twice and making nine tackles against Selinsgrove. “We’ve been saying all year and the last four years that tradition never graduates and, as you can see, it doesn’t graduate.”

Jersey Shore continues to have winning seasons off the assembly line and is 96-31 since 2013. During that time, the Bulldogs have won seven district championships, six league crowns, reached three state finals 4 and are on course to take the 2020 State Title.

The names change but the expectations and results do not. Jersey Shore is now one of three District 4 programs to win five District Championships in a row. The Bulldogs are 36-2 over the past three seasons and have transformed a program that was once a punching bag into one of the state’s perennial heavyweight punchers.

“As Coach says, ‘Tradition never graduates'” said two-way lineman Luke Springman. “And you want this to continue for years and years.”

So far, so good. This dominant 10-year-old race also seems to have come out of nowhere. Jersey Shore hadn’t had a winning season since 1997 at that point and was 3-37 in the previous four seasons, entering 2013 on a 12-game winning streak.

The 2013 team broke down that wall that had blocked Jersey Shore for so long and every team that followed did their part to keep raising the bar. Whether it’s a fairly young team like in 2018 and 2021 or a veteran team like this, Jersey Shore continues to find a way to excel.

Only South Columbia has won more games in District 4 in its last 10 years as Jersey Shore. The thing is, the Bulldogs never look back. They never look ahead either. It is focusing on the task at hand and nothing else.

This is also the case now. Jersey Shore celebrated with his passionate fans on Thursday, but a day later he was back at work. This team wants to continue living its motto.

“We are happy to have won the district championship”, Springman said. “But we are still focused on the rest of the coming season.”

FAMILY AFFAIR

Brothers Brady and Elijah Jordan helped Jersey Shore open the District Finals, combining for 224 rushing yards in the second half. Up front, cousin Dyson Delaney helped lead the way as the Bulldogs produced 440 yards.

You could say it was one hell of a night for the family.

Brady and Elijah have played huge roles over the past two seasons and produced one of their best combined performances against Selinsgrove. Brady had 246 yards and joined Elijah at safety to help the secondary frustrate the Seals. This was the last time Brady, a senior, and Elijah, a sophomore, will play together in a district championship, so this one was special.

“It’s a blessing to be able to play with my brother” said Elijah. “It’s a great experience.”

Brady has rushed for over 2,000 total yards this season and rushed for his 20th touchdown. An all-state athlete last season, Jordan has played even better this season and has become an excellent leader as well.

“He stepped up his game” said Elijah. “He’s worked so hard in the offseason to improve and do what he’s doing now.”

SPECIAL TEAMS SPECIAL

Canton won a second straight Class A District 4 championship in impressive fashion, beating Muncy, 42-7. The Warriors (11-1) handed Muncy (10-1) their first loss and repeated as champions for the first time in program history, dominating both sides of the ball and building a 42- 0 in the third quarter.

What some might have missed, however, is the impact of special teams.

In fact, the complexion of the game began to change dramatically when Michael Davis kicked a 56-yard punt and pinned Muncy at his six-yard line. It was a scoreless game at the time, but Canton forced a three-and-out, punt from the end zone and took over at Muncy 41. Four plays later, Davis scored and Canton took off, producing touchdowns on six of his next seven drives.

“We train special teams every day” Davis said. “We are still working on it and trying to improve.

He showed all night against Muncy. Starting with Davis’ clutch punt, Canton has won the battle for field position in a big way over the past three quarters. Backed by a teeming defense whose starters allowed just 49 yards, Canton frequently started Muncy inside the 20, while taking possession near or through midfield.

Brenen Taylor also blocked two punts; his first leading 14-yard touchdown from Riley Parker that enforced the mercy rule.

Much of that field position advantage came from the fact that Canton’s kick and clearance coverage units were so strong. The Warriors did not allow a return of more than 10 yards. And with the defense so effective, Muncy never played in Canton territory until late in the fourth quarter.

Oh yes, offense also played a key role in this positional game on the pitch. The Warriors rushed for 339 yards with Riley Parker while producing 119 and four touchdowns. Hayden Ward and Weston Bellows combined for 172 yards.

“It takes all three phases to be a champion team”, said Canton coach Tyler Sechrist. “All three of us did very well.”

1K AGAIN

Muncy sophomore Austin Johnson came out strong, rushing for 93 yards and scoring on a late 33-yard touchdown. Johnson rushed for over 1,000 yards for the second straight year, finishing with 1,082 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Even more impressively, Johnson missed two games and still hit the 1,000 yard mark and 20 touchdowns. A physical runner with disappointing speed, Johnson may be just getting started as he enters his freshman year.

“It was great to see Austin have a great run home. I was a fitting end to him,” Muncy coach Sean Tetreault said. “He’s worked hard this year and he’s the heart and soul of our racing game, so we had to give him something at the end.”

BONUS POINTS

Muncy linebacker Jason Shuda capped off what could be an all-state season, making 12 tackles against Canton. Sophomore Landyn Wommer looks like the next leader in a steady pipeline of quality Muncy linebackers and has made 11…Shuda is part of a senior class that has helped Muncy win 36 games, two district championships and two league titles in the past last four years. Muncy has won at least seven games each season and that total would have been higher in 2020 without a condensed season… Angelo Ferrigno returned an interception for a touchdown to tie the District 4 Class AA semifinal early Saturday before Mt. Carmel does retire and wins, 48-13. Hughesville (5-7) had its best season since 2016, won a playoff game for the first time in seven years and laid a solid foundation moving forward.

Chris Masse covers high school football and can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at @docmasse.

DR. MASS RANKINGS

Dr. Masse’s top five: 1, Jersey Shore (12-0); 2, Loyalsock (11-1); 3, Canton (11-1); 4, Muncy (10-1); 5, Milton (9-2)

Players of the week

Tyler Gee, Jaylen Andrews and Davion Hill, Loyalsock

The regional version of the Triplets erupted simultaneously in Loyalsock’s 69-42 District 4 AAA semi-final win over Mifflinburg and posted numbers that would make video gamers jealous. Gee tied an area record throwing for six touchdowns and 341 yards while adding 45 rushing yards. Andrews had one of the best receiving days in area history, catching seven passes for 244 yards and a record five touchdowns. He also returned a kickoff 81 yards for a score. Hill was also a force, running for a career-high 263 yards and four touchdowns. He added a fifth touchdown on a 65-yard pass and was 328 yards.

Game of the week

Loyalsock in Danville

These powerhouses have been on a collision course to meet again since Danville edged Loyalsock, 17-14 in a Week 4 thriller. Danville (12-0) is ranked No. 2 in the state and Loyalsock No. 4. Danville is chasing a third straight championship and Loyalsock his first since 2017. The Ironmen beat Loyalsock, 42-21 in last year’s semifinals, but Friday’s titanic clash is the only one that matters now. Buckle up.



Today’s breaking news and more to your inbox







[ad_2]
Source link

Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.