2017 PIAA Class 6A Title Game Preview: Pine Richland (7) 15-0
Written by: Billy Splain on Friday, December 8th, 2017
Class 6A Championship Sat. Dec. 9th 6:00 PM at Hersheypark Stadium
Head Coach: Eric Kasperowicz
How They Got Here:
Pine-Richland opened the season with a crushing 41-0 win over Wayne OH on ESPN. Some would say the main draw to get that game on ESPN was Nationally touted Notre Dame commit Phil Jurkovec. Rarely seeing the end of the third quarter in most games, the Ram signal caller has thrown for 3,769 yards and 38 tds. He’s also run for over 1,100 yards and 20 scores including a 35 yard dash up the middle last week against Manheim Township. Those stats alone could explain the 47.6 point scoring average. But Phil isn’t alone in the backfield. Running back Jordan Crawford has run for over 1,200 yards and 24 tds. Add in Kenny White’s 89 carries for 700+ and 10 tds and you now see how that average happens. Jurkovecs 2 favorite targets are Jason Defrancisis and Ray Falcone. The duo has combined for over 2,000 yards receiving and 21 tds.
Manheim held the Rams to their lowest point total of the year, a 28-7 win last week. They were the first team to hold Pine-Richland under 41 points all season. They’re led by a powerful line and Andrew Kristofic is their leader. Kristofic also holds a Notre Dame offer.
Defensively, The Rams only give up 12.5 points per game. Tyler King and Anthony Cerminara lead a linebacking corp that knows where the ball will go. Tommy Camino anchors a defensive line that knows where the backfield is, gaining 18 tackles for loss to go along with his 17.5 sacks.
The Rams are seeking redemption in this game, they lost a nail biter to St. Joes a few years back when Ben Dinucci had a 2 point conversion for the lead intercepted near the end of the game.
What would it mean for Pine Richland to win the game:
There’s so many people involved in the program, the fans, the community, the drum line, the volunteers, so many people. It would be awesome for the community to get it done.
What was your teams defining moment:
Probably that week one game with Wayne. To come out and have a quality, dominating game that showed the kids we are a force to be reckoned with.
Keys to winning the game on offense:
We just do what we do. We’re as spread as you can get. Put our players in space and let them do their thing. They’re a good team, well coached and I’m sure they’ll have a good game plan for us.
Keys to winning the game on defense:
Simple. We have to stop the run. Whether is the quarterback or their tailbacks, we stop that we can control the game.
Here’s a breakdown of Pine Richland’s projected starters in the Class 6A PIAA State Championship game with coaches quotes:
QB—PHIL JURKOVEC, #15, SR
He’s incredible, a tremendous leader and quarterback looking to go out on top after starting 3 years.
RB— JORDAN CRAWFORD, #3, SR or KENNY WHITE, #1, SR
They’ll both be important to help keep their defense off balance.
WR— RAY FALCONE, #5, SR
WR—JASON DEFRANCISIS, #17, SR
WR—DAWSON GOLTZ #4, SR
H – BEN JOCHEM, #20, SR
We have like a wheel of fortune at the wide receiver spot. We have five guys that we can go to. We do hope one or two really step up, but they’ll also be important to our run game with blocking and holding the perimeter
RT— ANDREW KRISTOFIC, #73, JR
RG— MICHAEL KATIC, #68, JR
C— MIKE DORUNDO, #64, JR
LG— PARKER BOYD, #53, SR
LT—GRANT LEMIRANDE, #55, SR
We have to win the line of scrimmage. Ultimately we have to protect #15. Andrews a stud, the real deal. They’re all good, they’ve started just about every game this year
N— MIKE KATIC, #68, JR
T – ANDREW KRISTOFIC, #73, JR
DE— TOMMY CAMINO, #6, SR
DE— PEYTON BYRD, #74, SR
To stop the run you have to be great up front. They are and they’re goo. St. Joes offensive line is big and pretty formidable so it should be a good battle to watch.
LB— TYLER KING, #8, JR
LB—ANTHONY CERMINARA, #34, JR
LB— JARED MARFISI, #42, SR
Those guys are tremendous. They’re our defensive quarterbacks
FS— LUKE MECKLER, #22, SO
BS— KENNY WHITE, #1, SR or BEN JOCHEM, #20, SR
FC— JORDAN CRAWFORD, #3, SR
BC— DAWSON GOLTZ, #4, SR
they’ll need to cover their best receivers and limit them to a few plays. Stop the big play
P— CAM BALLAY, #2, JR
PK— VITTORIO ORSINI, #27, JR
K – VITTORIO ORSINI, #27, JR
Vittorio, he’s so important. Most of the time he puts the ball in the end zone limiting the other teams field position
PR – LUKE MECKLER, #22, SO
KR – KENNY WHITE, #1, SR and JORDAN CRAWFORD, #3, SR
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