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Central opens season with huge win over West York

Patrick Strohecker, 505-5402/@P_Strohecker
  • Central York opens 2016 season with 45-15 win over West York.
  • Noreaga Goff had 131 rushing yards and two touchdowns for the Panthers.
  • Jordan Bowie had two interceptions for Central on back-to-back possessions.

PLEASUREVILLE — First-year Central York football coach Josh Oswalt knows how crucial opening the season with a win can be.

He's coached teams that lost the opener and seen just how quickly things can go south because of it.

So, forgive him if he was just a little bit more fired up than usual after Friday night's 45-15 home victory over rival West York in, not only the season's first game, but his first as head coach of the Panthers.

"It's always good to win the first one," he said. "Because I've been on teams where you lost the first one and the thing just rolls downhill and you always want to get off on the right foot. That's what you want. It's nice to have this one under our belts."

Central York's Sakai Barton (7), chest bumps his teammate Hunter Werner (26), after Werner scored a touchdown earlier in the year. The Panthers are 3-1 on the season. Amanda J. Cain photo

It didn't take long for Oswalt's team to make its mark on the season, as Central scored the game's first 14 points. Using an up-tempo style of play and utilizing the agile Noreaga Goff at running back, the Panthers pounded the Bulldogs on the ground. 

After a big 45-yard pass from quarterback Cade Pribula to Eddie Santiago set up Central deep in West York territory, Goff punched home the team's first points of the year from five yards out to make it 7-0. Just a series later, Goff made his mark on special teams, returning a punt all the way down to the one-yard line, where Pribula then snuck it up the middle to make it 14-0 midway through the opening quarter.

The Bulldogs finally got on the board on the first play of the second quarter on a touchdown by Jamal Anderson, but missed the extra point. Following a 42-yard field goal by Carter Luckenbaugh that put the Panthers up 17-6 midway through the second, Hunter Werner extended Central's lead to 24-6 late in the second quarter. 

That's when the Panthers' defense made its mark, more specifically, Jordan Bowie.

Bowie, who made headlines in the offseason when he was granted a fifth-year of eligibility by the PIAA came up with two big interceptions on back-to-back Bulldogs drives, the first of which came in the endzone when West York looked like it was going to score late in the half and try to snatch momentum. That first pick ultimately led to a safety to make it 24-8, but Bowie came up with his second one in two possessions following the ensuing punt to keep the Bulldogs from adding any further points.

But, even with the two-score lead, Oswalt felt his team could've had more and kept West York in it.

Central York head coach Josh Oswalt will be an assistant coach for the Pennsylvania State Football Coaches Association West Team on Sunday.

"That first half was so painful," Oswalt said. "We gave them eight points and we had so many breakdowns. We were shooting ourselves in the foot left and right and we left so many points off the board. ...So, my whole message at halftime was, 'Go out there and play Central football. Get the job done and prove to yourselves and prove to everyone else what you're capable of."

His team listened, as Central went on to rattle off 21 unanswered points in the third quarter to build a 45-8 advantage and put a running clock into effect for the rest of the game.

If there was any bright spot for the Bulldogs, it came in the fourth quarter when freshman quarterback Corey Wise connected with Joe King for a 64-yard touchdown on his first ever varsity pass, scoring the only points on the final frame.

The win was a statement victory for the Panthers, who are coming off a disappointing 3-7 season and have been written off by many entering the year.

"We had to come out and make our mark from the start so that we could let everyone know that we don't want to be the underdogs," Goff said. "We want everyone to look at us and know that we're coming and out to play."

Goff led the way offensively, rushing for 131 yards on 14 carries and two touchdowns, while Pribula was 8-of-15 passing for 174 yards with one passing touchdown and one rushing touchdown. Santiago had a team-high in catches (3) and receiving yards (68). Werner also had two scores on four carries.

Anton Johson, the senior starting quarterback for West York finished with 80 yards through the air on 9-of-17 passing, but also rushed for 36 yards. Cadence Thomas had a team-high 58 rushing yards and King had three receptions for 106 yards and a score.

Central York will host Cumberland Valley in Week 2, while the Bulldogs will have their home opener against Dallastown.

— Reach Patrick Strohecker at pstrohecker@yorkdispatch.com

West York's Cadence Thomas (1), breaks a couple of tackles during the second quarter of a non-league football game against Central York Friday, Sept. 2, 2016, at Central York High School. Amanda J. Cain photo

Central York 45, West York 15

West York_0_8_0_7_—_15

Central York_14_10_21_0_—_45

SCORING PLAYS

First Quarter:

Central York — Goff 5-yard run, (Luckenbaugh kick), 6:16

Central York — Pribula 1-yard run, (Luckenbaugh kick), 5:15

Second Quarter: 

West York — Anderson 11-yard run, (PAT missed), 11:51

Central York — Luckenbaugh 42-yard kick, 6:41

Central York — Werner 3-yard run (Luckenbaugh kick), 3:37

West York — Defense safety, :51

Third Quarter: 

Central York — Werner 1-yard run (Luckenbaugh kick), 8:43

Central York — Goff 15-yard run (Luckenbaugh kick), 7:27

Central York — Barton 18-yard catch (Luckenbaugh kick), 3:38

Fourth Quarter:

West York — King 64-yard catch (Keim kick), 8:46

First Downs: WY, 10. CY, 15

Rushes-Yards: WY, 33-103. CY, 31-176

Passing Yards: WY, 149. CY, 174.

Comp-Attempts-INTs: WY, 11-20-2. CY, 8-16-1

Penalties-Yards: WY, 5-45. CY, 10-65.

Punts-Average: WY, 8-31.3. CY, 2-44.0

Fumbles-Lost: WY, 0-0. CY, 1-1

Individual Passing: WY, Johnson, 9-17-80, 0 TDs. Wise, 2-2-69, 1 TD. Martin, 0-0-0. CY, 8-15-174, 1 TD. Jones, 0-1-0, 1 INT.

Individual Rushing: WY, 14-58. Johnson, 10-36. Anderson, 1-11. Wise, 2-5. Martin, 1-3. Brumley, 1-(-)1. Powell, 1-(-)3. Spadafora, 3-(-)6. CY, Goff, 14-131, Collins, 5-21. Werner, 4-8. Jones, 4-7. Santiago, 1-5. Pribula, 3-4.

Individual Receiving: WY, King, 3-106. Thomas, 3-22. Spadafora, 3-15. Lamanna, 1-5. Anderson, 1-1. CY, Santiago, 3-68. Sturgis, 2-53. Grim, 1-28. Barton, 1-18. Goff, 1-7.