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Game 11 | November 13, 2009 | Playoffs Round 1

Neshaminy 24 – Abington 17

Rematch goes to ‘Skins in playoff opener


game 11 abongton-p

Langhorne: On a blustery, damp and rainy Friday the 13th night, the 7-2 Ghosts of Abington made their way to Langhorne for the Preliminary Round of the District One Championship Series. And as the 8-2 Tribe was seeded at the number eight slot in the 16 team arrangement, with fellow SOL-National Conference member Abington at number nine, it couldn't have been called as much closer going in to kickoff. Well, that is unless we look back just a month or so ago to that 28-24 thriller that went to the visitors at their home field (which surely added an extra element to what was being billed as the 'Game of The Week' around the district). So with the table set for a humdinger, let's dig right in on this one as scholastic grid fans in Lower Bucks surely couldn't have been more ready for the feast these two clubs promised to deliver!

With the visitors winning the toss they elected to receive the ball. And after a bobbled catch, a Ghost was forced to fall on it on the 22 where they set up shop. Moving it out well, Abington took it to mid-field before running out of gas. Following the punt, Neshaminy then took over at its 26 before going back to the 21 on an offsides call. But failing to convert, Neshaminy went into its own punt formation only to see the kick blocked with the ball then returned into the end zone by a Ghost defenseman. With the PAT good, the visitors were suddenly up 7-0. Kicking off after that, the Blue and Red set up on their own 35 after the return. Stitching together an almost eight-minute drive in the drizzling and misty environment, the Redskins moved it down to the enemy ten before stalling out. From there it was Ricky Domico popping a 24-yard field goal to make it 7-3 as the first-period was drawing to a close.

After the Neshaminy kickoff, a solid return by Abington and holding penalty against the 'Skins, the Ghosts were in business at the Indian 44-yard marker as the teams switched sides for second-quarter action. But with the Schmidtmen defense stiffening, Abington punted after failing to make any headway with the ball hitting the end zone. As the rock was then brought back to the twenty, that's where the Skins took over.

From there Neshaminy moved it out to mid-field before a Tribe running back lost the handle. With nothing but Ghosts in the vicinity, the ball went back to the Abington group. The rain was now making it tough for both sides, though, as it was a three-and-out for Abington. Then after the punt, it was Neshaminy starting at the three-yard line with six-minutes in the half. Not able to take it out of the red zone, it was Bryan Reice back to punt again. And under pressure, the kick was short and high with Abington then starting off on the 'Skins 26. Not getting it very far, Abington salvaged a 30-yard field goal to make it 10-3.

But the Creek Kids refused to mail it in as Bryan Dean then returned the following kickoff to the Abington 45 where Langhorne put its offense back on the field. From there it was some passing and running that had the ball down to Abington's ten with fewer than 30 seconds to go. And deciding that the time for poking and prodding was over, Corey Majors then barreled up the middle for the score. Domico nailed the PAT and the score went to 10-10 which is how it remained as the team headed for the lockers.

After the break, and short kick, it was the 'Skins starting off at their own 36. And showing they could smack and bang around with the best of them, the Creek Kids burned eight minutes off the clock on a very pretty 64-yard drive for six. And despite the wet weather, it was Charlie Marterella finding Ricky Brebner for the last 12 yards. Domico didn't miss his shot either as it then went to 17-10 for the Old Lincoln Highway gang.

Kicking it away to the Ghosts, this time it was Abington moving a bit slow as their offense just couldn't find a gear. Going three and out, the punt from the 13 was returned to the 25. And on first down it was Dean to the 15 but a penalty took it back to the 30. Then mixing it up with a pass here and a run there, it was Dean who traversed the last ten yards for the touchdown. With Domico in the groove, it went to 24-10 for Neshaminy.

With Abington still not finding its groove, another three and out resulted in a punt. And although the Redskins looked solidly in control as the third-quarter ended, Abington caught a break when the wet ball slipped free from Neshaminy with a Ghost recovering it at mid-field. Finally putting something together, Abington roped together a drive that found the end zone with some strong help from a Neshaminy personal foul. As the conversion was good, it went to 24-17 as the game had obviously tightened up. Following the kick, it was then back to the Skins as they set up on their own 22.

Beginning from that spot, the Blue and Red started to weave their way down the field before stalling out in Ghost territory. Punting on fourth down, the ball found the back ten and then came back out to the twenty where it was first and ten Abington with two minutes to go. From there Abington punched it out to the 36 before going to a fourth and five. With the desperation pass falling incomplete, the pigskin went back to the Blue and Red as the clock was burned out by the Neshaminy offense.

And so with no complaints from our end, here it comes: Game to 'Skins!

Way to go Neshaminy and a sixteen-gun salute to the Ghosts too for another great game between these two squads. And now with the field in District One down to eight in the 4A level, and around the state to just 32 schools in all, our guys can begin to focus in on the immediate task at hand: Old friend and rival - the North Penn Knights. For with their win over the Indians of Council Rock North tonight, the Lansdale based club moves on to the quarterfinals next week too. But with North Penns number one seed, the 'Skins will be taking to the road for this one so Heartbreak Ridge will be quiet next Friday.

On a closing note, and knowing the Blue Knight program like we do, there's not much to say except that it's time to buckle up the bonnets and get in the old three-point stance as North Penn always means business. Course, when it's our 'Skins on the other side of the line of scrimmage, the books are often thrown out the window -- so get on the road early next week, as its sure to be a packed house for this donnybrook.

See you at the game.


Game 11
Abington – P

Photos courtesy of Jesse Garber

For more game photos go to Jesse Garber on Zenfolio



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