No. 3 Mt. Pleasant routs Southmoreland
TribLIVE Sports Videos
One play may not have changed the outcome of Friday night's game between Southmoreland and Mt. Pleasant, but a near-safety that instead wound up as first down symbolized where these two programs are three games into the season.
An experienced Mt. Pleasant squad turned folly into fortune often en route to a 38-0 Interstate victory over Southmoreland at Cal (Pa.).
No. 3 Mt. Pleasant (3-0, 3-0) returned a pair of interceptions for touchdowns, and senior quarterback Ryan Gumbita had a hand in three scores.
Senior Ryan Ballew scored with 6:25 left in the first quarter, and Eric Klejka picked off Brennan Coles' screen pass and returned it 27 yards to give the visitors a 12-0 lead early in the second quarter.
Southmoreland (0-3, 0-3) moved from its own 20 to the Mt. Pleasant 23, but lost the ball on a first-down fumble.
Moments later, a heads-up play by senior Tyler Mellors swung momentum in Mt. Pleasant's favor for good midway through the second quarter.
A 5-yard loss, two incompletions and a false start had Mt. Pleasant in punt formation at its own 16.
The snap sailed over Mellors' head and nearly went out of the back of the end zone, but before it did, Mellors grabbed the bounding ball and raced around right end. He picked up 26 yards and a first down.
Three plays later, Mt. Pleasant scored again and the rout was on.
“That was a turning point,” Southmoreland first-year coach Mark Adams said. “We had them pinned and thought we had a safety. That's a backbreaker for a young team.”
“The play Tyler made was unbelievable,” Mt. Pleasant coach Bo Ruffner said. “It should have been a safety, but he brought the ball out (of the end zone) and made a spectacular play. That kind of flipped everything around.”
Southmoreland will play at Ford City next week.
Dave Stofcheck is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.