Oct 30, 2021
ROARING SPRING — It took the entire four quarters for Central to officially cap off a second straight undefeated regular season.
However, aided by a few forced turnovers from the defense, it didn’t take long for the Scarlet Dragons to put the hammer down on Somerset, and leave no doubt as to what the outcome was going to be.
The end result: a 61-14 Central victory in dominating fashion over the Eagles on senior night at Roaring Spring Athletic Field in Laurel Highlands Athletic Conference action.
“It feels good for the players,” Central coach Dave Baker said. “It’s the first time in Central history we’ve been able to complete back-to-back undefeated seasons.”
Play of the game: With Central leading 13-0, the Scarlet Dragons had the ball at the Somerset 24 where Jeff Hoenstine dropped back to pass. He gave a pump fake in Parker Gregg’s direction, and then Gregg lifted his hand asking for the ball to which the quarterback obliged by tossing a 24-yard pass to the end zone. The pass was very slightly overthrown causing Gregg to turn his back to the ground, reach up with his right hand while launching himself in a backwards diving motion. He pulled the ball one-handed into his chest as he fell to the ground across the goal line. The TD put the Dragons up 20-0 with just six minutes expired in the first quarter.
“We’re just taught to make plays,” Gregg said. “I had to make one there, and I made it. I didn’t know if I was going to get to it. I ended up getting a hold of it, so we were excited after that.”
Player of the game: Hoenstine completed 12-of-14 passes for 279 yards and seven touchdowns passes — all of which came in the first half. The junior hit Hunter Smith for 14 yards on the first offensive possession, then found Ethan Eicher on a 1-yard pass on a drive which he came up with an interception of Somerset QB Lane Lambert. After the great catch by Gregg, the two hooked up again — this one from 30 yards out. Eli Lingenfelter was the next recipient as he hauled in a 61-yard pass before Eicher (9 yards) and Gregg (7 yards) capped off the first-half scoring that saw Central owning a 47-7 edge.
Unsung heroes: Seniors Gregg and Eicher. Gregg ran the ball three times for 86 yards, hauled in three passes for 61 and recovered a fumble. … In additon to the two touchdown catches, Eicher also had several tackles on defense and he partially blocked a Caleb Antram punt that only went for a 5-yard gain. The block helped set up the play of the game from Hoenstine to Gregg.
“It’s pretty special on senior night where we have some many weapons on offense that coach will pick out my number,” Eicher said, “and give me a play to go to get to score a touchdown. It’s great that we have such a close team that we can pick a number and find a way to get a touchdown.”
Most vital statistics: Central started all four of its drives in the first quarter in Somerset territory … The Dragons’ defense forced a total of seven fumbles — four of which they recovered. Dom Wagner came up with a loose ball, and Max Baker recovered one. Jack Dunn pounced on the ball for the Dragons in the third quarter that set up a Rylan Daugherty 32-yard TD pass to Shalen Yingling with 1:29 left.
Baker: “We are not where we want to be yet. We’ve accomplished some goals, but we still have a few ones out there. We want to win a district championship, and we feel we have a good shot at doing that. We want to enter the state playoffs where we know things will be tougher. However, we want to see how good we can really be.”
Somerset coach Brian Basile: “We got ourselves in the hole against, that’s not a good team, that’s a really good team. Hats off to them we wish them luck down the road. I’m proud of our guys — their effort. They keep fighting, they keep learning. We continue to try to be the best version of ourselves, and these guys will be great leaders some day.”
Notable: In addition to the mercy-rule running clock being effect the entire second half, both teams agreed to shorten the amount of time in the third (10 minutes) and fourth (eight minutes) quarters. Central rested its starters for the entire second half. … The Dragons’ Thaide Mickel scored on a 30-yard burst to set the final score. … The Dragons used five different kickers. Hunter Smith delivered three extra points, Averey Black made good on two point-after-attempts, while Aiden Steele and Ben Theys each made one PAT. In addition to Smith and Theys kicking off, senior Zack Kopco also was put in action on two straight second-half kickoffs, … The Eagles lost freshman starting quarterback Lane Lambert to injury on a QB keeper at the close of the first quarter. Bryce Mulhollen made the score 26-7 when he found Jack Kinsinger on a 21-yard TD strike at 9:07 of the second quarter, and then found paydirt on a 45-yard scamper at the close of the third stanza to make the score 54-14.
Records: Somerset (1-8); Central (10-0).
Next week: Somerset’s season is over; Central will play in the District 6 Class 3A playoffs next Friday or Saturday against Westmont Hilltop.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Somerset 0 7 7 0 — 14
Central 26 21 7 7 — 61
C–Smith 14 pass from Je. Hoenstine (Smith kick), 11:34.
C–Eicher 1 pass from Je. Hoenstine (pass failed), 9:21.
C–Gregg 24 pass from Je. Hoenstine (Smith kick), 6:00.
C–Gregg 30 pass from Je. Hoenstine (kick failed), 3:40.
S–Kisinger 21 pass from Mulhollen (Antram kick), 9:07.
C–Lingenfelter 61 pass from Je. Hoenstine (Smith kick), 8:44.
C–Eicher 9 pass from Je. Hoenstine (Black kick), 6:03.
C–Gregg 7 pass from Je. Hoenstine (Black kick), 2:53.
C–Yingling 32 pass from Daugherty (Steele kick), 1:29.
S–Mulhollen 45 run (Antram kick), 0:00.
C–Mickel 30 run (Theys kick), 4:58.
TEAM STATISTICS S C
First downs 13 14
Total yards 200 433
Rushes-yards 36-169 17-109
Yards passing 31 324
Passing (comp.-att.-int.) 4-13-1 15-18-0
Punts-avg. 3-17.3 1-26.0
Fumbles-lost 7-4 1-1
Penalties-yards 1-5 5-40
RUSHING–Somerset, Zimmerman 9-51, Lambert 5-9, Marteeny 3-25, Mulhollen 10-75, Sehn 2-(-1), Carolus 1-3, Vogt 1-5, Holmes 4-20, TEAM 1-(-18). Central, Smith 1-8, Gregg 3-86, Rhule 4-9, Daugherty 1-2, Baker 5-22, Mickel 1-30, TEAM 1-(-47).
PASSING–Somerset, Lambert 2-6-1-8, Mulhollen 2-7-0-23. Central, Je. Hoenstine 12-14-0-279, Daugherty 3-4-0-45, Muthler 0-0-0-0.
RECEIVING–Somerset, Marteeny 1-4, Kinsinger 2-16, Reeping 1-11. Central, Lingenfelter 1-61, Smith 2-28, Boyles 2-53, Metzger 1-9, Gregg 3-61, Biesinger 1-57, Eicher 2-10, Dunn 1-9, Rhule 1-4, Yingling 1-32.
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Oct 30, 2021