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Karns City Holds off Punxsutawney for 20-13 Win

Written by: on Monday, September 7th, 2009


PUNXSUTAWNEY — When Karns City visited Punxsutawney Phil territory Friday night, the final score was Gremlins 20, Chucks 13, that was only part of the story.

While Karns City has realized a lot of success for many seasons, the Chucks have struggled for many of those same seasons.

Coming into the 2009 campaign, Karns City was operating with 23 seniors missing from last year’s 12-2 team that won a District 9 title, while the Chucks returned a lot of personnel from last year’s team.

For the first 20 minutes of the fray, the Gremlins, although young and inexperienced, displayed many of the characteristics of the storied KC program as they dominated all aspects of the game to build up a 13-0 lead.

Carrying the mail to the end zone for the Gremlins were Aaron Markle with an 8-yard run followed by a 7-yard jaunt to paydirt by Jake Wagner.

However, just as quickly as the Gremlins dominated the flow of the game early, the momentum changed in the final three minutes of the first half and the opening five minutes of the third period.

Braedon Pennington hauled in a 15-yard scoring aerial from Logan Weaver with a mere eight seconds left in the opening half and inside the first five minutes of the third period, the Chucks tied the game on a 1-yard run by Ben Blazavich.

The Gremlins regained the advantage on an 11-yard run by Dylan Hipple on the first play of the final quarter to set the final.

Punxsy did pose one final threat after blocking a Karns City punt, but the Gremlin defensive unit stiffened to preserve the win.

“We reminded the kids that in first ball games, there are always a lot of mistakes so they would probably have to look for a way to win,” said KC coach Ed Conto. “I also told them that regardless of what way they would find for the victory, they had to do it the Karns City way and that is play hard and never quit.”

On the other side of the field, Punxsy first-year coach Alan Nichol, although disappointed with the loss, was happy with the effort .

“Football is a team game and you have to take pride and work hard in every play you run,” said Nichol. “You saw that (pride) from our young men tonight and I am very proud of them for their effort. We’re going to build on the things we did right and work hard to correct the things we did wrong.”

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