George Guido: Hard works comes to fruition for Knoch, new head coach

Tuesday, August 27, 2019 | 4:03 PM

It was a successful head coaching debut for Knoch’s Brandon Mowry as the Knights blanked Hampton last Friday, 24-0.

But even for someone who has been around football all his life, a head coaching debut can be daunting as we’ve found over the years.

“In the lead up to the game, you can get a little anxious,” Mowry said. “But once you get into the flow of the game, that suddenly changes. I was so happy for the players and staff and see all the hard work that’s been put in since January come to fruition.”

Matt Goodlin ran for 130 yards and a touchdown while quarterback Kam Grassi ran 12 times for 53 yards and two touchdowns.

The victory gave Knoch a 26-25-1 lead in the all-time series against the Talbots.

The all-time record for Knoch football is now 298-298-13.

The Knights open Class 4A Northwest 8 Conference play at home Friday against Blackhawk.

Powerful powerhouse

One of the most impressive performances of the season’s opening weekend was turned in by National Christian Academy at the Western PA vs. Everyone Showcase on Saturday at the Wolvarena in Turtle Creek.

The Eagles defeated Imani Christian, 70-6. Imani held a 6-0 lead after Adrian Naji scored on a 38-yard run on the first play from scrimmage.

National Christian fumbled on its next series but scored on its next nine possessions.

The Eagles have at least 11 major college prospects on the team.

Offensive tackle Aaryn Park, at 6-foot-5, 304 pounds, is either the No. 3- or No. 5-rated tackle in the country, according to various scouting services.

Another offensive tackle, 6-5, 286-pounder Tim Lawson, is committed to Louisville.

Their defensive pass rush was ferocious Saturday. Tackle Terion Sugick holds offers from 16 colleges.

Defensive back Tristan Armstrong, who returned an interception for a 24-yard touchdown, is headed to UMass.

Three other defensive backs have made commitments to Division I schools.

National Christian can’t be accused of running up the score. Four different quarterbacks engineered scoring drives.

After National Christian took a 54-6 halftime lead, it was decided the second half would consist of six-minute quarters and a running clock.

The Fort Washington, Md., school is in just its sixth year of football. National Christian has been most well-known for basketball, producing NBA star Kevin Durant.

Patrick Ewing Jr. also went to National Christian.

Furious finish

The old adage of “play to the final whistle” was employed in Friday’s Springdale-Deer Lakes game.

The Dynamos had scored a touchdown with 51 seconds left to take a 29-27 lead.

Deer Lakes quickly drove to the Springdale 27. But a 5-yard penalty put the ball back to the 32, and an incomplete pass forced the Lancers to line up for a field goal try from the 39 with 2 seconds remaining.

Springdale’s Christian Vokes blocked the field goal attempt. The ball rolled free near the 40. Deer Lakes senior Jack Hollibaugh alertly picked up the ball and advanced it to the Springdale 15 where he was finally stopped and the game was over.

Under the rules, if a field goal attempt is blocked behind the line of scrimmage, either team can advance the ball.

If the blocked ball is past the line of scrimmage, only the defensive team can advance the ball.

Here’s another twist to the blocked field goal rule: The offensive team can try a pass if a blocked kick is picked up behind the line of scrimmage.

It was such a great game that afterward, people from both schools are now hoping we don’t have to wait another 26 years before we see another Dynamos-Lancers football game.

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