KANE – In Friday night’s game in Kane, the Curwensville Area High School football team realized quickly that the game plan wasn’t going to work as the Wolves scored early and often to upend the Golden Tide 42-8 in Allegheny Mountain League – South Division action.
“I thought we could do something against them that just didn’t work out,” admitted Tide head coach Andy Evanko. ”We had a poor game plan and poor ideas out there. This one’s on me. You can’t blame the kids for this loss.”
Early in the game it looked as though the Golden Tide was going to control the Wolves running game holding them to minus one yard in their first three attempts. However, when the hosts needed to move the ball they went to the air. Kane eventually scored on their first series – an 11-play drive that covered 80 yards and featured five passes of 10-yards or more, including the 10-yard scoring strike from quarterback Kevin Cleer to Logan Zuzek at the 6:39 mark of the first quarter.
After a Tide three-and-out, Kane needed just three plays to score a second time in the quarter. Cleer connected with Jeff Kocjancic on a 34-yard pitch and run, and followed that with a 25-yard pass play to Andrew Pierson before John English scored from nine yards out for a 13-0 start.
Curwensville appeared to get on track on the ensuing series as they methodically pushed the ball down field. Using hard running and some timely passing, the Tide mounted a 17-play drive that started on their own 27-yard line. However, after running 7:55 off the clock, the third-and goal pass attempt from the Kane nine-yard line was tipped and intercepted to stop the threat.
“They’re a good football team,” Evanko said. ”They took advantage of our mistakes, and there were plenty to capitalize on.”
The Wolves would score three more times in the first half: once as a result of a second interception, once on a fumble recovery, and once on a long strike from Cleer.
Jeff Kocjancic broke loose for a 22-yard pass play after the second interception of the half at the 4:18 mark of the second quarter. The fumble recovery and 24-yard run came just :11 later when Nathan Klaiber scooped up the bouncing ball. The final score came at the 1:21 mark of the half when Cleer found Kocjancic again for the score on a 42-yard pass that helped the Wolves go to the intermission with a 35-0 advantage.
The second half moved quickly as the clock continued to run due to the mercy rule. However, it didn’t seem quick enough for the Tide faithful as the third quarter started the way the first half ended. Kane forced the Tide to punt the ball away and traveled 62 yards on four plays to push the lead to 42-0 on a 26-yard pass to Kocjancic.
One thing that has to be said about the Curwensville squad is that they are never going to walk away from a game. The Golden Tide went back to work with a 15-play attack once again. However, one again they came up empty when a Tide pass came out of a crowd in the hands of Kane’s Kocjancic.
The Tide did turn the tables at the 3:53 mark of the fourth quarter when Jake Terry picked off a pass from Jack Kocjancic as the reserves on both sides came in to finish the game. Three plays later Ben Junod broke loose from 36-yards out to post the Tide’s lone score of the night. Junod finished the scoring with the two-point conversion for the 42-8 count.
“We’ll bounce back,” Evanko noted. ”These kids are resilient, and they’ll work hard to get ready for next week. Every game is big from now on and they will give us everything they’ve got.”
Curwensville will need to get ready for AML-South foe Brockway at home next week. Brockway was a 40-20 loser to Ridgway Friday night. Other games of interest in the AML included: Sheffield 21, Coudersport 20; Otto-Eldred 12, Port Allegany 0; Smethport 35, Cameron County 18; and St. Joseph’s 44, Elk County Catholic 12.
NOTES: Cleer threw for 262 yards for Kane…Jeff Kocjancic caught seven passes for 171 yards and three scores…Curwensville’s Zach Tibbens finished with 76 yards on 23 carries…Curwensville turned the ball over five times in the game while posting just one takeaway.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Curwensville –0 0 0 8 – 8
Kane – 12 23 7 0 – 42
Kane: 10-yard run by Zuzek (kick failed),6:39.
Kane: 9-yard rub by Kocjancic (pass failed), 4:26.
Kane: 22-yard Cleer pass to Je. Kocjancic (Mattis kick), 4:18.
Kane: 24-yard fumble recovery by Klaiber (Je. Kocjancic pass to Lingenfelter), 4:07.
Kane: 42-yard Cleer pass to Je. Kocjancic (Cleer pass to Je. Kocjancic), 1:21.
Kane:26-yard Cleer pass to Zuzek ( Mattis kick), 6:57.
Curwensville: 36-yard run by Junod (Junod Run), 1:09.
Curwensville / Kane
FIRST DOWNS: 11 / 11
RUSH YARDS: 149/ 98
PASS YARDS: 38 / 262
TOTAL YARDS: 187 / 370
COMP/ATT/TD/INT: 6-13-0-3 / 13-17-4-1
FUMBLES: 4 /0
FUMBLES LOST: 2 /0
CURWENSVILLE: Tibbens- 23 carries, 76 yards; Olson- 6 carries, 21 yards; Johnson – 2 carries, 3 yards; Johns – 7 carries, (-23) yard; McKenzie – 4 carries, 42 yards; Junod – 1 carry 36 yards, TD; Team – 1 carry, (-6) yards; TOTALS: 44 carries, 149 yards, 1 TD.
KANE: Je. Kocjancic – 14 carries, 74 yards, 1 TD; Rolick – 4 carries, 21 yards; Westerburg – 2 carries, 8 yards; Team – 2 Carries, (-5) yards; TOTALS: 22 carries, 98 yards, 1 TD.
CURWENSVILLE: Johns – 13 attempts, 6 completion, 38 yards, 0 touchdown; 3 interception.
KANE: Cleer – 16 attempts, 13 completions, 262 yards, 4 touchdowns, 0 interceptions; Ja. Kocjancic – 1 attempt, 0 completions, 0 yards, 0 touchdowns, 1 interception; TOTALS – 17 attempts, 13 completions, 0 yards. 0 touchdowns, 1 interception.
CURWENSVILLE: Billings – 2 receptions, 16 yards; Olson- 1 reception, 2 yards; Jacobson – 2 receptions, 10 yards; Tibbens – 1 reception, 12 yards; TOTALS: 6 receptions, 38 yards.
KANE: Je. Kocjancic – 7 receptions, 171 yards, 3 TD’s; English – 2 receptions, 27 yards; Pierson – 3 receptions, 54 yards; Zuzek – 1 reception, 10 yards, 1 TD; TOTALS: 13 receptions, 262 yards.