Hometown Sports
Don't Miss

Juniata dominates Upper Dauphin, stays unbeaten in Liberty division

By Kenny Varner

MIFFLINTOWN – Ring the bell.

In the battle of the unbeatens in Mid-Penn Liberty action, Juniata hosted Upper Dauphin in grid iron action Friday.

The Indians were primed and ready to battle the Trojans for the top spot in the Liberty division and the title of conference champion.

“The kids have worked hard all season long. We really had big goals at the beginning of the season and we can still achieve them,” said Juniata coach Kurt Condo. “I’m happy for the kids. They worked hard tonight. They executed the game plan very well. The kids have a great effort.”

Last season, the Trojans got the win.

This season, the Juniata offense sizzled early and often breaking out into the contest scoring 20 unanswered points in the first half en route to the 33-6 dominating win.

Defensively, the Indians were prepared for the 3-headed running machine of Tyler Erhard, Caleb Snyder and Carter Dreibelbis.

The Trojans had just 95 total yards at the half, while the Indians had tallied 206 just at the half, 112 on the ground and 94 through the air.

Upper Dauphin led the game off with the first possession.

The Indians defense wasted little time making their presence known, stopping quarterback Tyler Erherd for a 12-yard loss on the first play.

After holding the Trojans to a four and out, Juniata went to the air on third down, quarterback Wyatt Ehrenzeller found favorite receiver Jasper Shepps for a 34-yard connection, putting the Indians on the Trojans 22.

Facing a third and goal at the nine, the Indians handed the ball to Javier Lopez who reversed it and handed it to Seth Laub. Laub cruised into the end zone for the touchdown with 6:53 left in the first. The PAT was unsuccessful but Big Red had the early momentum 6-0.

Like in the first set of downs, the Indians defense were keying on Erherd and company and forced another punt.

Neither team would punch another one before the beginning of the second quarter.

But minutes into the second Laub hit pay dirt once again, scoring from 2-yards out. Juniata gambled for the 2-point conversion and was successful as they once again handed it to Laub. He would not be denied as he muscled his was past the line, upping it to a 14-0 advantage.

With time running out in the half, the Indians added another score to increase its lead before going into the intermission. Running back Talan Barndt got free around the end and scored from 20-yards out, inceasing the lead to 20-0.

The Trojans moved the ball towards the Juniata end zone in the final seconds, highlighted by a Tyler Erherd 50-yard run. But the Juniata defense held and kept the Trojans scoreless.

The Indians got back to it starting the third quarter with the ball and the momentum.

Offensively, the Indians would March down the field on an 8-play drive.

On 2nd and 4 from the six, Ehrenzeller handed the ball off to Laub once again. Laub went right at the defense once again, scoring his third touchdown of the night from 6-yards out, upping the lead to a comfortable 26-0 advantage with 8:29 left in the third.

The defense continued to play lights out on the night for the home team as they continued to frustrate the Trojans running game.

Shepps helped his team get back on board posting an interception when it looked like Upper Dauphin was looking to go on a potential scoring drive.

However, for one of the very few times on the night, the offense was stalled at their own 13.

Facing a fourth down and long, Shepps pulled a fake punt to perfection as he blazed his way down field for an 87-yard touchdown run, ending the Indians scoring at 33-0.

Late in the final stanza, the Trojans were able to score but it was too little too late as the Indians closed down the contest, staying perfect as well in the Mid-Penn Liberty division.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *