Fords run out of gas against Knights

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TOWAMENCIN- It was clear from the beginning, literally the first play, that it was going to be another one of “those games” for the North Penn Knights (No. 1, 11-0). The kick off from senior Noah Kwortnik put the Haverford Fords (No. 16, 6-5) back on their 4 yard line, and from there on out the Knights kept control of the game. With their largest margin yet, North Penn won in the first round of District 1 6A playoffs 56-7.

The Knights were the first on the scoreboard due to an explosive start. After the chemistry between senior quarterback Reece Udinski and Ricky Johns took the Knights to the 1 yard line, senior Nick Dillon earned the first touchdown of the night (9:50).

“My first thought after the initial touchdown was ‘let’s get another one,’” joked Dillon.

That is exactly what North Penn did. Dillon was able to complete another 1 yard touchdown soon after, putting the Knights ahead 14-0 (4:22).

Their touchdown was answered by Haverford’s junior Jordan Mosley who scored on a 65 yard touchdown run only 10 seconds later (4:12).In the second quarter, the Knights didn’t hesitate to lengthen their lead over the Fords. Nick Dillon ran, once again, for an early 1 yard touchdown, putting them ahead 21-7.

“We got off to a strong start; when that momentum kicked in, it carried us through the night,” said Udinski.

The North Penn defense made it hard for Haverford to gain yardage on the field, limiting them from time in the Knight’s redzone. Ford’s sophomore quarterback Jake Ruane made the mistake of throwing the ball over Ricky Johns, a key player for the Knights who stands at 6’4’’. Johns was able to intercept the pass and change possession over to the North Penn offense, who soon took the ball down to the 1 yard line where Udinski ran it into the endzone.

“We have been feeding off of interceptions all year,” said Head Coach Dick Beck.

Udinski then connected with senior Nick Vasger who caught the ball mid air for another North Penn touchdown, putting the Knights up 35-7.

“I was excited; I think Reece made a perfect throw and it was a great play overall,” said Vasger.

Just as Haverford was in the midst of an offensive drive, junior Justis Henley pulled a Ricky Johns and intercepted yet another pass, this time, returning it for 65 yards. His return put the Knights in a familiar position: the 1 yard line. Making his fourth 1 yard touchdown of the night, Nick Dillon took care of the unfinished business, extending the Knights’ lead 42-7.

“Coach Beck put us in the right positions tonight to make those big plays; it gave us a lot of momentum in the game,” said Henley.

In the third quarter, junior quarterback Garret Quallet saw some action on the field, giving Udinski a well earned rest. A pass from Quallet to sophomore Xzavier Gorsky resulted in a 9 yard touchdown for the Knights (8:17).

In the fourth quarter, Haverford was in the North Penn redzone, quickly and with purpose. However, as the Fords made an endzone pass, North Penn junior AJ Catanzaro intercepted the ball, preventing a Haverford touchdown (11:30). Quallet earned the last North Penn touchdown, running North Penn’s sixth 1 yard touchdown (5:57).

“Our biggest asset is our balance. There isn’t one running the show, it is everybody out there. As long as we continue to play like a team, the sky’s the limit,” said Beck.

“We have a great bond as teammates. We all play for each other and that gives us the energy to come out hard every week,” said Vasger.

“We all love to play football together- we are a big, happy family,” said Henley.

The Knights will play Springford (No. 8, 8-2) next Friday night in the District 1 quarterfinals.

Knights celebrate win after game

Anissa Gardizy
Knights celebrate win after game