Defense Leads Penn Hills Against Mars

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Penn Hills force six turnovers Friday night — five in the second half — and defeated Mars, 14-7, in a key Northern Conference matchup.

Mars rushed for 100 yards in the first half and only 17 in the second.

Trailing 7-0, Penn Hills rallied with two second-half touchdown runs by senior Germar Howard, including a game-winning 78-yarder up the middle with 4:29 left in the fourth quarter. He led the Indians (3-1, 2-0) with 122 rushing yards on 11 carries.

Howard also had an 18-yard touchdown run in the third, but this was a night for the Penn Hills defense to celebrate. Mars had six second-half possessions and ended them with a punt, two lost fumbles and three interceptions.

After Penn Hills took a 14-7 lead, Mars threw two interceptions in the final four minutes.

Teddy Ruffner led Mars (2-2, 0-1) with 85 yards rushing on 29 carries. The Planets led 7-0 at halftime after a 14-yard touchdown pass from Quinn Fuller to tight end Mitchell Wright.

The Planets held possession for more than 15 of the first 24 minutes and kept Penn Hills scoreless.

Tied 7-7, Penn Hills had fourth-and-goal from the 1 early in the fourth quarter and was stopped short of the end zone when Wright tackled quarterback Eddie McKissick in the backfield with 9:49 left.

Unable to cross its own 30, Mars punted the ball back to Penn Hills with 4:41 left. One play later, Howard broke free for his 78-yard touchdown.

Penn Hills will travel to Kiski Area (2-2, 1-2) on Friday for a 7 p.m. kickoff.