DUBOIS – The Curwensville Golden Tide High School football squad advanced to its sixth District 9 championship game with a 47-13 victory over Redbank Valley Saturday night at Mansell Stadium in DuBois.
The Golden Tide (9-2) will now play defending District 9 “A” champion Ridgway in the District finals on Friday night at Mansell Stadium. Game time is set for 7 pm.
During the regular season, on October 6, the Tide knocked off the Elkers, at Curwensville, 14-11.
Ridgway (8-3) the number two seed, defeated Coudersport 47-6 in the other semifinal game, also at Mansell Stadium, earlier Saturday afternoon.
It was a game of fives for Curwensville as senior running back Nick Stewart scored five touchdowns and rushed for 247 yards while the Tide defense picked off five Bulldog passes.
Stewart scored his first TD at the 9:38 mark of the first quarter on an eight yard run while the two point conversion attempt failed.
The hook and ladder play at 11:46 of the second quarter put more points on the board for Curwensville as quarterback Bryce Timko hit Noah Von Gunden with a short pass who then flipped to Stewart who took it to the end zone for the score.
In all, the play covered 75 yards.
Blake Passarelli was successful on the two point conversion run, giving Curwensville a 14-0 edge.
With just 49 seconds remaining before the half Timko threw a nine yard touchdown toss to Stewart and Madison Weber tacked on the extra point making it 21-0 Tide at the break.
Redbank Valley showed some life to start the second half with freshman quarterback Kobe Bonanno, who came into the game halfway through the first half when junior QB Keaton Kahle went down with an injury on defense and never returned.
Bonanno scored the first points of the second half on a five yard run with 8:12 left in the third, and suddenly the Bulldogs had a little steam. Clint Thurston added the extra point and the Tide margin was cut to 21-7.
Stewart, however, came to the rescue, as the all-time District 9 rushing leader ran for a 14 yard score with 1:30 left to go in the third, and with the extra point by Weber Curwensville was back on top by three scores at 28-7 moving into the fourth quarter.
Junior fullback Avery Franciso scored twice for Curwensville in the final 12 minutes with a 14 yard run at the 10:37 point, and then again on a 13 yard journey with 4:06 remaining in the game.
After both Francisco’s TD’s the Tide went for two and failed both attempts.
Sandwiched between the two scores by Francisco was another Bonanno touchdown run for Redbank Valley, this time a seven yard dash to the end zone. The two point conversion attempt failed.
The night’s final score came when Stewart scored on a four yard scamper, his 26th touchdown of the year, with just 1:58 to play.
Von Gunden got a shot at the PAT attempt and was successful as Curwensville got the 47-13 win.
As mentioned, the Tide defense stepped up with five interceptions as Josh Terry had two in the second quarter, Timko had two in the third quarter and Caleb Bloom picked off a Bulldog pass in the fourth quarter.
The five picks gives Curwensville a total of 20 on the season.
Also, with a huge rushing game for Stewart, he became the first player in District 9 history to go over 7,000 yards in career rushing.
Curwensville has won District 9 titles, all single “A”, in 2000, 2004 and 2010 and finished second in single “A” in 2001 and 2006.
The Elkers have won two D-9 “A” titles, 1989 and 2016 with one runner-up trophy in 1993.
Listen to the District 9 class “A” championship game between Curwensville and Ridgway on WOKW-FM, 102.9, next Friday with the pre-game show starting at 6:45 pm.
REDBANK VALLEY 0 0 7 6 13
CURWENSVILLE 6 15 7 19 47
CURW 9:38 Nick Stewart eight yard run, Two point conversion attempt failed 6 0
CURW 11:46 Bryce Timko pass to Noah Von Gunden then lateral to Stewart 75 yard touchdown
Blake Passarelli two point conversion run 14 0
CURW :49 Timko nine yard pass to Stewart, Madison Weber PAT 21 0
RV 8:12 Kobe Bonanno five yard run, Clint Thurston PAT 21 7
CURW 1:30 Stewart 14 yard run, Weber Pat 28 7
CURW 10:37 Avery Francisco 14 yard run, Two point conversion attempt failed 34 7
RV 6:05 Bonanno seven yard run, Two point conversion attempt failed 34 13
CURW 4:06 Francisco 13 yard run, Two point conversion attempt failed 40 13
CURW 1:58 Stewart four yard run, Von Gunden PAT 47 13
INDIVIDUAL STATS (via www.d9sports.com)
RUSHING:Redbank – Chase Wiles 1-(-6), Hunter Wiles 4-35, Clint Thurston 8-(-5), Bonanno 9-31, Barrett 1-(-3), Travis Crawford 6-22.. Curwensville – Nick Stewart 34-247, Avery Francisco 7-70, Timko 5(-8), Anthony Winebold 4-17.
PASSING:Redbank – Keaton Kahle 1-for-2, 12 yards, Kobe Bonanno 8-for-15, 102 yards, 5 interceptions Curwensville – Bryce Timko 6-for-12, 106 yards, 2 touchdowns, 2 interceptions.
RECEIVING:Redbank – Chase Wiles 3-48, Brock Barrett 5-57, Hunter Martz 1-9. Curwensville – Josh Terry 4-32, Noah Von Gunden 1-2, Nick Stewart 1-72
Golden Tide Scoreboard:
|08/25||@ Cameron County||38 – 8||1 – 0|
|09/01||@ Smethport||48 – 0||2 – 0|
|09/08||SHEFFIELD||56 – 8||3 – 0|
|09/15||@ Port Allegany||56 – 13||4 – 0|
|09/22||@ Kane||0 – 57||4 – 1|
|09/29||BROCKWAY||15 – 13||5 – 1|
|10/06||RIDGWAY||14 – 11||6 – 1|
|10/13||@ Elk County Catholic||43 – 12||7 – 1|
|10/20||BRADFORD||14 – 23||7 – 2|
|10/27||PHILIPSBURG-OSCEOLA||48 – 19||8 – 2|
|11/03||District 9 A Playoffs|
|11/11||Redbank Valley @ DuBois, 6 pm||47 – 13||9 – 2|
|11/17||vs. Ridgway, @ DuBois|