Tyrone touchdown machine tramples Bald Eagle Area under relentless attack

Here’s a scary thought for the teams remaining on Tyrone’s schedule, and it comes straight from a coach who had just seen first hand the Golden Eagles\’ piercing offensive precision and bruising defensive grip: Tyrone may be better this season than it was a year ago.
“I think they’re better than last year,” said Bald Eagle Area coach Mike Markle, just minutes after the final horn of his team’s 42-14 loss to Tyrone in Wingate. “Last season they were bigger, but this year they have more athletes.”
That’s a bold statement, considering that last season’s Golden Eagles won a District 6-AA championship and advanced to the PIAA semifinals, but from where Markle is sitting, it must seem pretty accurate. Tyrone scored on four of its first five possessions, and had four different players with touchdowns before BEA had crossed the goal line once.
However, Franco may take exception to Markle’s’ assessment. After all, while this year’s Golden Eagles have demonstrated a surprising level of efficiency and balance on offense, they’ve already turned the ball over as many times in four games as last season’s squad did in its first 13. Tyrone added one more fumble to its turnover total against BEA, giving the team six for the season, but that may have been Tyrone’s only mistake in a nearly flawless first three quarters.
The Golden Eagles, now 4-0 overall and 2-0 in the MAC Nittany Division, moved the ball with a consistent rushing attack and a mix of big plays, taking a 21-0 lead before the end of the first quarter. Of their six scoring drives, four lasted five plays or less, and only one took longer than 2:15.
“Offensively, we were very efficient,” said Franco. “We’ve been playing very well and with a lot of intensity, and we are taking no one for granted.”
Meanwhile, Tyrone’s defense held BEA (1-3, 0-2) to three-play drives on three of its first five possessions. Quarterback Camdin Crouse, who entered the game as the division-leader in passing yards, misfired on his first four passes and was sacked four times while completing only 5 of 13 passes.
“When you’re not making them punt, and then you’re going one, two, three plays and punt, you’re not going to have any offensive consistency,” Markle said.
Tyrone quarterback Leonard Wilson completed 6 of 12 passes for 117 yards and a second quarter touchdown pass to Shane Barr, leaving the three-year starter one scoring toss behind Jarrod Anderson as the school’s career leader in TD passes (27).
Junior Tyler Gillmen was at the front of Tyrone’s ground attack with a career-high 113 yards on eight carries, while senior Brinton Mingle added 70 yards and three touchdowns on 10 carries.
Mingle started the scoring for Tyrone at 10:12 of the first quarter when he ran in from four yards out one play after Wilson hit Trey Brockett for a 30-yard gain. It capped a five-play drive, and Buddy Stotler’s first of five PAT kicks made it 7-0.
Two minutes later, the Golden Eagles took over at their own 31 and drove 69 yards in eight plays to go ahead 14-0 on a 1-yard Wilson sneak. The big play of the series was a 27-yard reception on a screen by Mingle, but the hookup didn’t come without a price. In the scramble behind the play, center Robert Emigh was knocked unconscious and was down on the field for more than five minutes. The ambulance was summoned, and then sent away, and Emigh walked off the field but did not return to the game.
“He was only out for a couple of seconds,” said Franco. “He probably could have played again, but we thought it was better to keep him out and err on the side of caution.”
Tyrone made it 21-0 on its next possession with a drive ignited by Gillmen, who burst free for 12 yards on the second play of the series, and then on the third took a toss left and sprinted 37 yards for his second touchdown of the season.
The Golden Eagles used a short field to quickly make it 28-0 in the second quarter. Mingle ran free for 26 yards on second down, and then scored on a 2-yard run two plays later to end a four-play, 36-yard drive.
Wilson’s four-yard pass to Barr with one minute left in the first half made it 35-0, but the key plays of the drive came when Gillmen burst free for gains of 25 and 26 yards, allowing Tyrone to move from its own 22 to the BEA-22 in just three plays.
The Golden Eagles totaled 201 of their 230 rushing yards in the first half.
“We blocked well, and I thought Josh Wright did a nice job coming in for Robert Emigh,” said Franco. “But that’s something we expect.”
Franco opened his offense up one time in the second half, with Wilson completing 3 of 3 pass attempts on Tyrone’s opening series of the third quarter, including a 35-yard pass and catch with tight end Doug Morrow that advanced the ball to the BEA-7. But on the next play, the quarterback-center exchange fell to the ground and ended up in the hands of Kyle Bowes.
On Bald Eagles ensuing possession, a Jon Miller sack of Crouse caused a fumble that was smothered at the BEA 23 by Donnie Conrad, and it took only two plays for Johnny Franco to blast in from the one. Shayne Tate’s PAT made it 42-0 with 1:42 left in the third quarter.
BEA punched in two scores late, once on a 25-yard run up with middle by Crouse, and another on a 5-yard run by Luke Nyman.
GRID TIDBITS: Stotler sent two kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks and knocked two others to the 1-yard line … the victory was Tyrone’s 11th over BEA … the Golden Eagles are 4-0 under Franco for the fifth time … along with nearing Anderson’s touchdown passes mark, Wilson now has 2,608 yards passing, leaving him 278 yards behind career passing yardage leader Tyler Mertiff … junior lineman Bo Latchford left the game with a knee injury in the first half … the Golden Eagles take on Philipsburg-Osceola Friday at Gray Veterans Memorial Field.
Tyrone 42 Bald Eagle Area 14
Tyrone 21 14 7 0 – 42
Bald Eagle Area 0 0 0 14 – 14
First Quarter
T – Mingle 4 run (Stotler kick) 10:12
T – Wilson 1 run (Stotler kick) 6:06
T – Gillmen 37 run (Stotler kick) 2:22
Second Quarter
T – Mingle 2 run (Stotler kick) 11:19
T – Barr 8 pass from Wilson (Stotler kick) 1:00
Third Quarter
T – Franco 2 run (Tate kick) 1:42
Fourth Quarter
B – Crouse 25 run (Crouse run) 10:27
B – Nyman 5 run (Pass failed) 2:37
First Downs 15 11
Yards Rushing 230 122
Pass Att.-Comp. 6-13 5-13
Pass Yards 117 77
Total Yards 347 199
Fumbles/Lost 1-1 1-1
Interceptions Thrown 0 0
Penalties/Yards 3-15 9-70
Punts/Avg. 2-28 5-33.5
Tyrone – Gillmen 8-119; Mingle 10-70; Franco 7-41; Golden 2-3; Williams 1-1; Walk 2-(-2); Wilson 2-(-2).
Bald Eagle Area – Crouse 14-37; Resto 6-20; Sowash 5-11; Kochik 3-8; Johnson 1-3; Breon 1-2; Hoffman 1-9; Nyman 2-29; Bowes 1-2.
Tyrone – Wilson 6-12-117, 1 TD, 0 Int.; Golden 0-1-0.
Bald Eagle Area – Crouse 5-12-77, 0 TD, 0 Int.; Breon 0-1-0.
Tyrone – Brockett 2-41; Morrow 1-35; Gillmen 1-6; Mingle 1-27; Barr 1-4.
Bald Eagle Area – Resto 4-65; Viehdorfer 1-12.