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This week in Blue Devil football

In a game played at 2:30 p.m. in the afternoon at Bellwood-Antis, on Sept. 30, 1944, The Blue Devils pounded Lilly-Washington High School 47-0.
After a series of plays by the Lilly Mountaineers were forced to kick. Runs by Ken Woodhall and Raymond Strunk quickly carried the ball down the field, with Strunk picking up the first score. Before the first quarter had ended, Bellwood-Antis scored again, when sophomore Woodhall tossed a touchdown pass to B-A end George Cody.
In the second quarter, Art Claar, who would lead the Blue Devils in scoring in 1944 with 10 touchdowns, increased the score to 27-0 with a pair of long TD passes from Woodhall.
Claar then scored a third TD in the third quarter, on another toss from Woodhall, who as early as his freshman season in 1943, was being billed as the best passer in the state. Ron Raugh, also a sophomore, rushed for a another touchdown in the same quarter.
With the second team in the game for head coach Duke Burkholder, Bellwood-Antis got their final score when Bobby Ehrisman returned an interception for a score.
Raugh booted five PAT kicks and the Blue Devils had 15 first downs to just four for Lilly. Woodhall’s four touchdown passes set the school record, which he would tie later in the 1944 season in the final game against Mount Union and would stand, until Scott Hunter threw five TD passes, all in the first half against Claysburg-Kimmel in 1974.
Bellwood-Antis evened their record at 2-2 on Sept. 30, 1955 with a 19-6 triumph over Osceola Mills. In the last of four straight season-opening games at Bellwood Memorial Stadium, the Blue Devils scored twice in the second quarter and then once more in the fourth for first-year head coach Andy Daskovich.
After a scoreless opening quarter, Bellwood-Antis got the ball, as a result of a poor Osceola punt at the OM-33. Max Kneidinger, who was the team captain and played right end, took a handoff from quarterback Barry Cory around left end for the nine-yard touchdown.
B-A forced another Indian punt and then marched 60 yards for their second tally of the quarter. Lynn Gault ran 14 yards foe the TD to complete the drive. For the second straight time, a successful extra point was nullified by a penalty and neither replay following then walk-offs was good.
I the final quarter, the Blue Devils added an insurance score when Cory tossed a 21-yard TD pass to Kneidinger for the score and then was on the receiving end of a pass for the PART and a 19-0 lead.
Osceola Mills added the final TD late in the game against the B-A reserves.
Cory was four-of-six throwing for 53 yards and one TD.
In a battle of unbeaten small school powers, Bellwood-Antis traveled to Altoona’s Mansion Park on Sept. 30, 2000, for a game with Bishop Guilfoyle. The B-A defense held the Marauders to minus yardage rushing as BG was the latest in the line of opponents that the Blue Devils had administered a beating on the football field in 2000, in a 31-0 Bellwood-Antis win.
The Blue Devil defense, led by Tom Kovac and Ryan McClellan, who spent considerable time in the BG backfield, chasing down Marauders, ever let the previously unbeaten BG squad get into their offense.
“Tremendous win,” said B-A coach John Hayes. “Saturday night up here (Mansion Park) is like Monday Night Football for high school. Everybody is out here watching,” referring to the packed Bellwood-Antis side of the stands.
The Blue Devils, who entered the game ranked number nine in the state, had the number one offense in the area and the number two defense. Through their first five games, the B-A defense had a scoreless streak that reached 17 straight quarters in this game.
Dave Miller scored two TDs and rushed for 160 yards on 15 carries, and caught two passes for 29 yards, Matt Garner added 123 yards and one TD on 20 carries, and Duane Ehredt also scored a TD. Chris Miller, Dave’s twin brother booted a 25-yard field goal to open the scoring and added four PAT kicks.
The B-A offense, uncharacteristically lost two fumbles and a pass interception, more turnovers than B-A committed in their first four contests.
With the B-A defense holding the Marauders to a minus 24 yards rushing, and a 3-0 lead, Bellwood-Antis drove 62 yards for their first TD Chuck Benton completed passes of 18 yards to Jeff Hostler, 15 and 14 to Dave Miller and a seven-yarder to Tyson Weiand. Dave Miller slammed in from four yards out for the score and Chris Miller added the extra point kick.
On their next series, B-A went to their trick book. Miller took a handoff from Benton and tossed a halfback pass to Brian Shura, who was all alone for 45-yard gain to the BG-26 on the opening play. Disaster struck when Benton, who completed five of eight for 56 yards was intercepted. The pick was carried all the way to the BA-14, where Dave Miller made a TD-saving tackle.
With their backs to the wall, the B-A defense responded. First Tom Kovac threw the BG running back for a three-yard loss, then Kovac sacked the Marauders quarterback for a loss of eight. On third down, Jeff Hostler tipped a pass and Troy Beaver intercepted it in the end zone.
The only third-quarter score came on a pair of long runs which keyed the 70-yard drive. Dave Miller rumbled 25 yards and then later Matt Garner scooted the final 34 for the TD.
In the fourth stanza, Miller had gains of 19 and 18 and Garner added 19 on four totes to set up Ehredt’s one-yard score. Finally, the Blue Devils drove 81 yards for their final tally. Garner carried three times for 26 yards and Dave Miller burst through the line and raced 48 yards for the score.
BG was in Bellwood-Antis territory exactly twice. The first time came on the interception and the second was on a recovery of a Blue Devil fumble at the BA-34.

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This week in Blue Devil football

Osceola Mills came into the football game against Bellwood-Antis on Sept. 23, 1950 a week after the Indians defeated Tyrone 7-0 for the first win in the history of the Osceola Mills/Tyrone series.
Before a paid crowd of 2,510, believed to be the largest in Osceola Mills history, Bellwood-Antis scored a 20-0 shutout win for their third straight triumph of the season for head coach Earl Strohm.
The Blue Devils first score came on pass and lateral play, in which B-A fullback Ken Deremer passed to end senior end Dick Keller, who then tapped the ball out to Don Roth a senior, who had transferred into the district from New York state, for the final seven yards and a TD.
Early in the second quarter, Gene Houser took the ball on a reverse and scampered 21 yards for the second Bellwood-Antis score. DeRemer booted PAT kicks after each of the first two scores.
The third touchdown came on a short line plunge by Roth, later in the second quarter.
In a game billed by the Daily Herald as the top clash in the area, the only Indian scoring threat came in the fourth quarter. Osceola Mills drove to the BA-22, but were halted there by the B-A defense.
The Indians were hampered by the absence of star Don Fulmar, who injured his shoulder in the Tyrone win and his replacement Ben Miller, who had two broken bones in his hand.
The Blue Devils outgained Osceola 246-91 rushing and 61-0 in passing yardage.
Bellwood-Antis scored a touchdown in each quarter and added extra points on the final three to shut out Juniata Valley 27-0 on Sept. 23, 1961 for second-year head coach Chet Dillen. This was just the Blue Devils’ third shut out in their last 53 games, going back to the middle of the 1955 campaign. In the 12 seasons prior to that (1942-1954), Bellwood-Antis had recorded 64 shutouts, an average of a little better than five per year.
The game was a matchup of opposites-Bellwood-Antis stayed almost exclusively on the ground, firing up just two passes, while the Hornets filled the air with nearly two-dozen passes.
Following a Juniata Valley punt the rolled dead at the BA-14, the Blue Devils drove 86 yards to put the first score on the board. Fred Svoboda raced the final 24 yards for the TD for a 6-0 lead.
In the second quarter, a Hornet punt again put Bellwood-Antis deep in their own territory, this time at the B-A-19. Rick Benner scooted 35 yards to the JV-26 as the opening quarter ended. Five plays later, Johnny Moffa capped the drive by going around right end for the eight-yard score. Moffa also rushed for the extra point and a 13-0 advantage at the half.
Svoboda gave his teammates a jump-start in the third quarter, by returning the second-half kick 40 yards back to midfield. Covering the distance in 10 plays, the Blue Devils Moffa went around the right side again for his second touchdown, a seven-yard jaunt and then added the PAT rush.
Juniata Valley was able to move the ball with their air offense, but the B-A defense wouldn’t allow them to get too close. Sophomore defensive back Walter Rhoades, who would later total a pair of 1,000-yard rushing seasons, intercepted a Valley pass to stop one threat at the BA-10. Then senior speedster Jim “Whitey” Forshey pickoff another Hornet pass and returned it 91 yards for the Blue Devils final touchdown of the contest. Moffa got his third PAT rush to cap the scoring.
On Sept. 23, 1983, Bellwood-Antis turned back a determined Williamsburg squad 27-0, for the Blue Devils third straight win after a season-opening 9-6 loss to Penns Valley.
Entertaining a Blair County rival for the third straight week, the B-A offense lulled the Blue Pirate defense to sleep with four straight Don Stiffler runs, then turned the offense over to quarterback Bob Gill, who found fullback Mark Baney open out of the backfield for a 32-yard pass play to the W-Burg-20. Two plays later, Stiffler went the final 17 yards for a score.
On the next series, the Bellwood-Antis defense forced Williamsburg to punt. Defensive tackle Roger Wigman crashed through to block the punt and teammate and current B-A assistant junior high coach Art Partner picked up the pigskin and bolted unmolested into the end zone for a 20-yard touchdown.
Williamsburg tried to get back into the game, but Christian Appleman, later a Penn State basketball start, who threw for 162 yards in the game was sacked for an 18-yard loss to stall the drive.
Just before halftime, the Blue Devils sprang Stiffler loose and the talented, but oft-injured tailback sprinted 53 yards for his second score. Steve Miller booted his second PAT kick for a 20-0 halftime margin.
Stiffler, who led all rushers with 149 yards and two TDs on 14 carries, also had a 46-yard TD romp nullified on a penalty.
Bob Gill scored the final six-pointer to cap a 60-yard fourth-quarter march with a one-yard TD and Miller added the placement

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This week in Blue Devil football

We continue the long-running series this fall by taking the Bellwood-Antis games that were played in the past on the same exact dates as this season’s schedules. We will take two or three games each week for you enjoyment or topic of conversation over the morning coffee.
On Friday, Sept. 9, 1949, Bellwood-Antis opened their season by stopping backyard rival Tyrone 15-0. The triumph ended a 29-game win streak for the Golden Eagles. Tyrone had already stopped a 19-game win streak by Bellwood-Antis a few years earlier with a 14-0 win in 1947.
Performing under new head coach Earl Strohm for the first time, after former coach Duke Burkholder moved to DuBois to teach and coach, the Blue Devils never allowed three-time defending Western Conference champ Tyrone to threaten the B-A goal line.
Tyrone was without a first down, until Eagle halfback Elwood Reese plunged up the center in the fourth quarter to move the sticks for the first time.
Bellwood-Antis got all four of their running backs into the act. Mike Hoffer, John Powell, Paul “Buddy” Wertz and Len Hummel knifed through the inexperienced Tyrone line for 14 first downs and 165 yards rushing, while the B-A defense limited Tyrone to 64 yards.
The Blue Devils scored on their first possession of the game, driving 63 yards after Wertz returned the kick seven yards to the BA-37. Hoffer picked up a first down taking a reverse seven yards. Hummel skirted right end for 15 more, before Hoffer ran another reverse for eight yards and Powell bulled the final five yards on two plunges, including a two-yard TD.
In the second quarter, Bellwood-Antis stopped Tyrone on downs at the T-36. After Wertz gained three yards through center, Hummel fired a jump pass to right end Bill Reed, who took it to the Tyrone-5. Hummel then went over right tackle for the score and Powell added the extra point rush for a 13-0 lead.
Wertz’s kickoff was fumbled and touched down at the Tyrone one-foot line. Wagner attempted to punt out of trouble, but the kick was blocked out of the end zone for a safety to increase the B-A advantage to 15-0.
The scoring all came in the first two quarters with Bellwood-Antis’ furthest second-half penetration to the T-14, while the Eagles reached as far as the BA-30.
On Sept. 9, 1988, Bellwood-Antis jumped out to a quick start against Southern Huntingdon to earn a 26-8 win over the Rockets for head coach John Hayes.
A pair of passes from senior quarterback Todd Hirt, one for 13 yards to classmate wide receiver Charlie Burch and another to senior tailback Tobias Nagle netted key first downs on the Blue Devils opening series, with Naugle’s grab a determined effort on fourth down. Senior, slotback Jason Lamertina put the ball into the end zone by scooting 10 yards on a reverse.
The first of two consecutive Southern fumbles gave Bellwood the ball at the Rocket-33. On the second play from scrimmage, Nagle burst through for a 21-yard gain and several plays later Scott Mirabella powered in for the first of his three scores.
Following the second fumble, Mirabella blasted for 14 yards, Naugle sliced through for eight more and Mirabella motored the final 15 yards for the TD. Mirabella added the PAT kick for a 19-0 B-A margin early.
Then as coach Hayes described, “it seemed like everybody took turns self-destructing.”
While the defense continued to hold the Rockets, allowing just a single first down while the first team was in the game, and a single fourth-quarter score, the B-A offense stumbled and misfired into four interceptions and numerous other mistakes.
Finally a couple minutes into the fourth quarter, sophomore Bo Lardieri set up the final score with a 20-yard punt return to give the Blue Devils good field position at the SH-25. Mirabella capped the seven-play drive by bolting the final five yards for the score.
The Blue Devils jumped ahead of Everett with two quick scores, but needed a defensive goal-line stand and late TD to edge Everett 27-26, on Sept. 9, 1994.
Chad Swogger recovered a fumble on Everett’s first possession and Dennis McClellan capped the short 27-yard march with an eight-yard TD. McClellan, who rushed for 133 yards on 26 carries, also had runs of seven and eight yards in the series.
B-A also put the ball in the end zone on the next series as well. Runs by Swogger of 11 yards and quarterback Jason Reed for 10, keyed the 14-play, 69-yard drive and Jason Kirkpatrick scored the four-yard TD.
Everett came right back to score a touchdown in each of the first three quarters, with the Blue Devils notching a score in the second.
Mike Dougherty recovered an Everett fumble and a penalty on the Warriors moved the ball to the E-11 in the second quarter. It took Tony DeGennaro just one call to run a reverse for the 11-yard score. A pair of PAT kicks by Jason Tubbs put B-A up 20-14 at the half.
Everett tied the score 20-20 following a Blue Devil fumble at the BA-13.
McClellan contributed runs of seven, 18 and 14 yards and then the three-yard TD on the next series as B-A drove 64 yards for the go-ahead score. Tubbs added the all-important extra point.
Everett returned the following kick 73 yards for a touchdown and after a time-out went for two points. An attempted pass went incomplete and Kirkpatrick recovered the on-sides kick to wrap up the win for the Blue Devils and coach John Hayes.