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Bulldogs outlast late run from tough Juniata squad

By Kenny Varner

LEWISTOWN – Two rivals met Saturday in the Central Keystone Football and Cheer’s Freedom Bowl at Mitchell field.

Juniata battled Burnham in Pee Wee action.

It would also be one that would go down to a few minutes left in the contest before a winner would be declared.

The game came down to a clutch defensive stand late by the Bulldogs as they scratched out an exciting 27-19 contest.

Burnham was led by Malcom Collins who rushed for 100-plus yards while Juniata speedster Carson Kirk also topped the century mark in the rushing department.

Collins put the Bulldogs up first as he blazed his way to a 47-yard score with 3:19 left in the opening stanza.

One play later, Kirk tied things up as he broke free and blazed his way to the end zone on a 60-yard TD, 6-6.

After holding the Bulldogs on their next offensive possession, Kirk went back to the end zone posting a 65-yard run, putting the Indians up 12-6 early in the second.

But before intermission, the Bulldogs battled back to take the lead late in the second 13-12.

This time it was Titan Cherry that would hit paydirt, scoring from one-yard out, making it a 13-12 contest.

Juniata had the last word before the intermission as Kirk once again scored. This time the score was a 20-yard jaunt, making the score 19-13 lead, going into the half.

In the second half, both defenses held the others in check for most of the half.

But Burnham would take back the lead, it would be a 44-yard run by Ricky Jenkins and a successful PAT gave the Bulldogs a slight 20-19 advantage.

Going into the final stanza, Burnham was at it once again as they handed the ball back to Collins. Collins did the rest, scoring on a 31-yard TD, extending the lead to 27-19.

But the Indians refused to go down without a fight taking their last possession and taking the ball deep inside the Bulldogs Red Zone with less than two minutes left.

Burnham’s defense made one last strong effort to keep the game as is.

The Bulldogs were successful holding the Indians to a fourth down and six. The group held and then ran the time off the clock en route to the 27-19 contest. 

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