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Fast start keys Bellwood-Antis junior high to big win over Golden Eagles

For all intents and purposes, it was over early. Tyrone and Bellwood-Antis opened their junior high football seasons at Gray Vets Memorial Field on Thursday evening. If you were late, by the time you got there, Bellwood-Antis was ahead 16-0 on the scoreboard, on the way to a 42-0 win.
The Little Blue Devils opened the scoring with a defensive touchdown when defensive lineman Jeff Novac picked up a Tyrone fumble and rumbles 25 yards for a TD. Quarterback Nate Gray tossed a two-point conversion pass to Tim Collier.
Then Gray got loose for a 32-yard jaunt into the end zone and threw a pass to Tyler Geis this time, for the two pointer and a quick 16-0 advantage practically as fast as it took to describe it.
“I guess you couldn’t script a better start than that,” said B-A coach Charlie Burch. “Everything just went our way and early-on it fell apart for Tyrone. We were able to put some heat on them with some long runs and our defense played well. They were aggressive. I’m happy, we can’t get big heads and think we are just going to walk through an entire season. We just have to keep at it.”
Tyrone came back with a long pass from quarterback Kyle Updike that carried down to the BA-32. Updike went to the well once too often however. On the next play, Matt Flaugh intercepted a pass and returned the pick 55 yards to the T-22. Gray scrambled left, ran into a group of players, broke out, cut right and raced 20 yards for the score and a 20-0 B-A lead with 18 seconds remaining in the opening quarter.
Cody Smith sacked Updike and Drew Saylor stopped a run behind the line of scrimmage, forcing Tyrone to punt.
Pfahler returned the kick 32 yards to the T-32. B-A drove the 32 yards in five plays with Gray hitting tight end Tyler Geis with a seven-yard TD pass on a fourth down-and-five play. Saylor rushed for the two-point conversion and a 30-0 margin at halftime.
Tyrone had their best march of the game after the final B-A score of the half. Beginning at their own 32, the Eagles held the ball for 11 plays. Updike picked up seven yards on the first call and found Devon Miller for six yards and a first down pass play. Jeremy Barlett had his number called twice for 17 yards and Mark Mingle added a six-yard tote. The B-A defense stopped the threat however with three straight sacks. First, it was Levi Hollen, then Saylor and finally Gray and Novac combined for the last one.
Pfahler field the second half kickoff at his own 30, ran through a big hole on the right side and motored 70 yards for a touchdown.
The final TD was scored by the Bellwood-Antis defense. Tyrone marched from their 27 to the BA-36, before the B-A defense rose up again. First the “D” tackled Barlett for a 12-yard loss. Then Adam Kovac recovered a fumble to give the ball back to the Blue Devils.
After the Tyrone defense stopped Bellwood-Antis, Updike completed a pass for 14 yards and a first down to Johnny Shaffer. Seventh grader Travis Taylor stepped in front of an Updike pass and returned it for a 67-yard score.
Taylor also picked a Tyrone pass attempt in the eighth grade game and ran it back for a TD in a Bellwood-Antis 20-0 win.
“They need to come together as a team,” said Tyrone coach Dan Plummer described his team’s problems. “W had 11 guys out there on the field, but it’s not a team unit yet. Right now, we just need to come together and hopefully get the season headed in the right direction.”
Tyrone (0-2) travels to Huntingdon on Thursday, Sept. 15 with a 4 p.m. start time for the ninth grade game and 5:30 for the seventh and eighth grade game.
Bellwood-Antis (1-0) hosts Penns Valley at 6 p.m. on tMonday.