Defense leads Pine-Richland to Class 6A PIAA Championship Game
All season long, Pine-Richland relied on its potent offense to get the job done, but in a change of events, the defense was the primary factor in sending the Rams to the Class 6A PIAA Championship Game next week at Hershey.
The Rams forced five Manheim Township turnovers and allowed only 69 rushing yards in their 28-7 win on Saturday at Mansion Park Stadium in Altoona.
This is the only time this season Pine-Richland failed to score at least 41 points, but it was good enough for their first trip to the championship game since 2014.
Pine-Richland took a 13-0 lead into halftime on two first quarter touchdown passes by Phil Jurkovec. Jurkovec hooked up with Raymond Falcone for a 6-yard score to open the scoring and found Jordan Crawford for a 33-yard touchdown later in the quarter.
Manheim Township cut the deficit to 13-7 in the third quarter but like they have all season long, the Rams responded. Pine-Richland scored two more touchdowns in the third quarter for the 28-7 lead and win. The Rams’ touchdowns came on the ground this time with a 25-yard run by Crawford and 31-yard run by Jurkovec.
Jurkovec finished the game 20 for 33 for 243 yards and two touchdowns. He also had a rushing touchdown and two-point conversion.
Crawford led the rushing attack with 53 yards on nine carries and a touchdown and a receiving touchdown.
Falcone was the leading receiver with six catches for 86 yards and a touchdown.
Pine-Richland improves to 15-0 and will face the No. 7 team in the country, St. Joseph’s Prep, in the Class 6A PIAA Championship Game on Saturday at 6 p.m.
Peters Township vs. North Allegheny Game Summary 11-11-17
|SCORE BY HALVES||1||2||FINAL|