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Short- handed Huskies fall to Palmyra


LEWISTOWN – A short-handed Mifflin County needed to play perfect football with minimal mental mistakes and no turnovers against Palmyra.

It did just the opposite.

Five turnovers and surrendering big plays were too much to overcome as the Huskies fell 35-24 to the Cougars in Mid-Penn Keystone action Friday night at Mitchell Field.

Palmyra (1-4, 1-3) scored on four plays of 49 yards or more, including two returns for over 90 yards. Mifflin County (0-4, 0-3) repeatedly shot themselves in the foot with inopportune penalties to kill drives and the turnovers that lead to 21 Cougar points.

“Everything hurt us tonight,” Mifflin County coach Scot Sechler said. “We didn’t execute well. We weren’t prepared and I think we thought we were going to come in and push these guys over because they were 0-4, and they handed our [butts] to us.”

The Huskies looked unstoppable on their opening drive, chewing up yardage on the ground with the offensive line opening up huge holes. The drive stalled on penalties, but Mifflin County drew first blood on a Ben Yingling 36-yard field goal for the 3-0 lead.

On the ensuing kickoff, Palmyra responded in a big way when Richie Kowalski took the kick 96 yards to daylight to give the Cougars the lead, 7-3 with 8:29 to go in the first.

Mifflin County, without the services of Brycen Hassinger and Trey Kibe, put together another impressive drive. The 8-play, 63-yard march ended when Gage Schaeffer took it in for the score giving the Huskies the 10-7 advantage with 5:21 left in the first.

A Husky fumble gave the Cougars a first-and-10 at their own 49. On the drive’s first play, quarterback Seth Robertson connected with Gage Miller on the Go route for a 51-yard score. The extra point gave Palmyra the 14-10 lead after one.

The Mifflin County defense responded to give the lead back to the Huskies when Brooks Burdick sacked and stripped Robertson of the ball. Isaac Wilson scooped up the gift and scored from 15-yards out to give the home team the 17-14 lead with 4:21 left in the half.

Palmyra regained the lead right before half after Robertson connected with Tristan Murawski in the back of the end zone for the 17-yard touchdown to give the Cougars the 21-17 advantageat the half.

The game’s tide and momentum turned to the visitors when Anthony Mansfield took the opening kick of the second half 95 yards for the score and a 28-17 Cougar lead.

“Too many momentum plays in the opposite direction,” Sechler said. “That’s on me. We weren’t prepared tonight. We were not prepared. It was just one of those nights where it didn’t matter what we were doing; we didn’t do it well. We didn’t tackle well;we didn’t cover kicks well, we didn’t return kicks well, we didn’t block well. We didn’t do anything well tonight.”

Mifflin County closed the gap when Devin McCalips capped a 12-play Husky drive, helped by three Palmyra penalties, with a 14-yard scoring toss from Drake Schaeffer. Drake hit Gage Schaeffer for the two-point conversion to make the score 28-25 with 4:50 left in regulation.

Any hopes for a comeback win or overtime ended when tailback Nick Wallaesa went off-tackle for 49 yards and a touchdown with 1:37 left to set the final score.

Schaeffer led the Huskies with 14 carries for 57 yards and a score. Jayden Jackson caught two passes for 70 yards, both on deep balls by Lyons.

Wallaesa finished with 82 yards on 11 carries and a TD, while Robertson completed 4-of-7 passes for 88 yards and a pair of TDs.

Mifflin County hosts Cedar Cliff on Friday in its last home gameof the season.

Palmyra 34, Mifflin County 25


Palmyra 14 7 7 6–34

Mifflin County 10 7 0 8–25

First Quarter

MC–Yingling 36 FG, 8:42

P–Kowalski 96 kick return (Toure kick), 8:29

MC–G. Schaeffer 15 run (Yingling kick), 5:21

P–Miller 51 pass from Robertson (Toure kick) 1:45

Second Quarter

MC– Wilson 15 fumble return (Yingling kick) 4:21

P–Murawski 17 pass from Robertson, (Toure kick), 1:07

Third Quarter

P–Mansfield 95 kick return (Toure kick), 11:46

Fourth Quarter

MC–McCalips 14 pass from D. Schaeffer (G. Schaeffer passfrom D. Schaeffer), 4:50

P–Wallaesa 49 run (Kick failed) 1:37


                       P MC

First downs      9 13

Total yards   249 249

Rushes-yards 30-161 37-139

Yards passing 88 110

Passing (comp.-att.-int.) 4-7-1 6-22-3

Punts-avg. 2-44.5 3-31.7

Fumbles-lost 2-1 3-2

Penalties-yards 7-55 4-40


RUSHING: MC–Gage Schaeffer 1457 TD, Drake Schaeffer 9-39, Cody Bickhart 7-33, Jared Lyons 5-8, Luke Torquatto 1-3, Jayden Jackson 1-(-1); P–Nick Wallaesa 11-82 TD, Seth Robertson 12-53, Sam Landon 7-26.

PASSING: MC– Drake Schaeffer 3-13-2 37 TD, Jared Lyons 3-8-1 73, Cody Bickhart 0-1-0 0; P–Seth Robertson 4-7-1 88 2 TD.

RECEIVING: MC–Jayden Jackson 2-70, Devon McCalips 2-22 TD, Daniel King 1-15, Eli Pennebaker 1-3; P–Gage Miller 1-51 TD, Tristan Murawski 1-18 TD, Dylan Kriner 1-16, Jacob Deimling 1-3.

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