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SENIORS REIGN SUPREME: Five ECC seniors score touchdowns in 32-7 victory

Written by: on Saturday, October 18th, 2008


SAINT MARYS, Pa. – Dick and Priscilla Mortland made the trip from Atlanta, Georgia to see their grandson, Matt Bauer, play during his senior night football game for Elk County Catholic High School.

And while the temperatures throughout the game were just downright frigid, the performance of their grandson might have been enough to take the Mortlands’ minds off the cold.

Bauer caught two passes for 62 yards, including a game-breaking 48 yard touchdown reception, and made a couple of tackles from his defensive back position as ECC (6-2 overall, 6-2 AML) blew out Ridgway (2-6, 2-6) 32-7 from Dutch Country Stadium in Saint Marys.

When Bauer scored his touchdown, Mr. Mortland made the comment, “This trip was worth it.”

Ridgway’s trip to Saint Marys, however, was not.

Despite the fact that the Crusaders only managed three first downs in the first half, the ECC defense made life miserable for the visitors, forcing five Elker turnovers, one of which was an interception which senior Justin Stubber returned 35 yards for a touchdown and a 6-0 ECC lead.

That interception return, though, would be the long highlight from a first half which moved along fairly quickly, likely much to the approval of the few hundred people in attendance.

Elk County widened its lead to 13-0 when Joe Jacob found Mike Assalone on a 19-yard scoring pass.

Ridgway countered with its only touchdown, using quarterback Joe Renaud in a shotgun set.  Renaud finished the drive 3-of-3 for 73 yards, and his eight-yard pass to Sam Skraba narrowed the Crusader lead to 13-7.

But ECC rattled off 19 consecutive points, beginning with Bauer’s 48-yard touchdown reception from Jacob.  Jacob, who finished 3-of-7 for 81 yards and a pair of touchdowns, tripled his season total of scoring passes from one to three.

Ridgway’s night got worse when a punt snap sailed errantly over the head of Joe Chittester, and Tom Marconi (26 rush, 112 yards) scored from five yards out to make it 25-7, ECC.

Elk County capped the scoring when Josh Catalano (7 rushes, 23 yards) scored from a yard out with 3:24 left in the game.

Senior Matt Meholic added 17 rushing yards on five carries for the Crusaders.

Ridgway’s rushing attack, led by the duo of Elliot Pontious and Cory Eshbach, really never got going.  Pontious was held to 29 yards on 10 carries, which Eshbach fared no better, carrying the ball 10 times for 13 yards.

Ridgway’s leading rusher was reserve DJ Skraba, a sophomore, who finished with 34 yards on four carries.

Renaud finished 6-of-12 for 98 yards, but he lost two fumbles and threw an interception.


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