ELLIOTTSBURG, Pennsylvania -
Prior to a couple of weeks ago, it had been 33 months since the Central Penn Piranha last experienced losing a football game. They had two weeks to stew about it before taking the field once again. It wasn’t pretty, but they did get back to their winning ways.
The CPP followed the lead of a ground attack that produced 313 yards rushing (7.8 avg.) and 3 TDs, en route to a 37-12 victory over the visiting Philadelphia Braves.
However, things looked grim for the Piranha right out of the gate. On the game’s very first play from scrimmage, QB Tariq Wright hooked-up with WR Butter Brown on a pass play down the middle. Brown juggled the ball and eventually gained possession. Once he did, it was all over. Brown raced 80 yards untouched for a Braves touchdown (1 QTR, 14:46). The 2-point pass attempt failed, giving Philly an early 6-0 lead.
Early on it appeared that the hangover from Central Penn’s previous loss was still there.
Two possessions later are when the Piranha got things back on track. They pieced together a 56-yard scoring drive on 6 plays (all rushing), courtesy of RB Ron Hunter (3-40), RB Marvin Williams (2-15), and FB Nick McConnell (1-1). The capper was a 6-yard run by Williams (1 QTR, 5:30).
Two plays later, LB Clifford Puckett picked-off Tariq Wright in Philly territory. A couple plays later, WR Darren Echols made them pay for it, and he also made history. Echols hauled in a 41-yard pass between two defenders at the goal line, near the pylon. The referee signaled touchdown, and with that play Echols became the All-Time touchdown receptions leader in CPP history with 54. He surpassed Piranha Football Hall of Famer WR Walter Bland (53).
Central Penn went on a ‘Scoring Frenzy’ in the second stanza, logging 16 more points to take a 30-6 lead into the locker room. A couple of 1-yard runs by Ron Ron Hunter (2 QTR, 14:56) and Fruquan Gaston (2 QTR, 9:06) were notched. Later, a team safety was recorded when the ball was snapped over Butter Brown’s head in punt formation in the end zone. Brown gathered the ball and proceeded to toss it out of the end zone for a team safety (2 QTR, 5:15).
In the third quarter, Butter Brown capped a 94-yard scoring drive for Philly when he had a 54-yard catch-and-run pass play from Wright (3 QTR, 4:56).
The Piranha added one more score in the fourth quarter when CB Marcus Sargeant returned an interception 25 yards for a touchdown (4 QTR, 12:58).
Each team had 5 turnovers, with many of them fumbles (each team had 2) being contributed to a driving rainstorm throughout the contest.
RB Ron Hunter led the CPP offense with 105 yards rushing and 1 TD.
WR Butter Brown was the overall player of the game. Brown logged 170 combined yards (145 rec, 25 rush) and scored both Philly TDs. He also handled the kickoff and punting duties for the Braves.
On defense, the CPP were led by LBs Donnell Donaldson (5 tackles) and Clifford Puckett (4 tackles, 1 INT-0 yards, 1 pass def), and DE Raheem Brock (3 tackles, 1 FUM-8 yards, 1 pass def).
- Each team had 5 turnovers
- CPP offense had 5 turnovers for the second consecutive game
- Both teams combined for 12 total fumbles (CPP 7, PHI 5)
- Both teams combined for 15% conversion rate on 3rd down (CPP 1-8, PHI 2-12)
- CPP had 6 players with 46 or more combined yards (RB Ron Hunter 105, RB Fruquan Gaston 65, WR Darren Echols 63, QB Brandon Sanders 61, WR Hassan Brockman 55, RB Marvin Williams 46)
- CPP failed to score 6 times in the ‘Red Zone’ (3-9)