Women’s Interhall: Pangborn offense overpowers Cavanaugh
Observer Sports Writers | Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Pangborn 33, Cavanaugh 6
By ALEX CARSON
Phoxes junior quarterback Caitlin Gargan led No. 3 Pangborn to victory over No. 6 Cavanaugh 33-6 in the first round of the interhall playoffs Sunday.
Gargan marched the Phoxes (6-0-1) down the field in their opening three possessions of the game, running it in from 21, 23, and 16 yards out to give her team an early 20-0 advantage. Gargan accounted for 264 of Pangborn’s 266 yards of offense (156 rushing, 88 passing).
“Offensively, Caitlin [Gargan] was big for us today,” senior captain and offensive lineman Mary Kate Veselik said.
Gargan’s contributions were not the only reason for Pangborn’s triumph, as its defense recorded four interceptions on the day. Junior defensive back Anna McNamara returned an interception for a touchdown late in the first half to stretch Pangborn’s lead to 27-0 at the break, while senior Molly Shawhan recorded three interceptions.
The Chaos (3-4-0) had 219 yards of offense. Junior quarterback Samantha Flores contributed 198 of those to lead the Cavanaugh offense on the day. Flores connected with freshman receiver Alyssa Anton for a 16-yard touchdown strike to put Cavanaugh on the board late in the third quarter.
“It was a tough break and there was just nothing we could do about it,” senior captain and linebacker Meaghan Ayers said.
Gargan capped off the win in the fourth quarter for Pangborn, connecting with sophomore receiver Gracie Gallagher on a 24-yard touchdown for the final score of the game.
Pangborn will play No. 2 Ryan next week in the playoffs, seeking to settle the score from the teams’ 7-7 tie earlier this season.
Contact Alex Carson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pasquerilla East 14, Howard 7
By ANDREW EISENREICH
In a matchup of two high-scoring teams Sunday, defense took center stage as No. 4 Pasquerilla East held off No. 5 Howard in a 14-7 overtime victory.
Pasquerilla East (6-1) kept the Ducks (4-3) scoreless in the first half, consistently penetrating Howard’s offensive line. The Pyros recorded eight sacks on the day, seven from junior defensive tackle Elizabeth Zopler.
On the other side of the ball, the Pyros’ option passing game was stifled by a Ducks’ secondary that had four interceptions.
The defensive stalemate was finally broken late in the third quarter when the Pyros rushed for a four-yard touchdown. Then, coming off an interception from the Ducks’ secondary, Howard senior quarterback and captain Clare Robinson rushed for a 15-yard touchdown with a minute left to tie the game at seven.
The game proceeded to overtime, where Pasquerilla East struck first on a five-yard pass from junior quarterback Macy Mulhall to freshman receiver Noelle Gooding. The Pyros sealed the game by picking off an errant Robinson toss in the end zone.
Despite the late miscue, the Pyros commended the play of Robinson.
“Their quarterback was unreal,” Pyros captain Caroline Kuse said.
As for next year, things look bright for the Ducks, who only graduate four seniors Robinson said.
“I’m really looking forward to see how Howard will develop,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Pyros hope to build off their first playoff win in over three years in Sunday’s semifinal matchup against Pasquerilla West.
Contact Andrew Eisenreich at email@example.com
Ryan 41, Lyons 0
By ZACH KLONSINSKI
One had to look closely to spot the difference for No. 1 Ryan in its 41-0 playoff victory over No. 8 Lyons on Sunday.
The Wildcats (6-0-1) usually feature freshman quarterback Kathleen Conaty, but due to an elbow injury, her twin, Clare Conaty, led them at the position.
On Ryan’s first offensive play, Clare Conaty found junior offensive lineman Ashley Veselik for a 13-yard touchdown pass. Clare Conaty added touchdown passes of 24 yards to sophomore receiver Erin Clark and nine yards to senior receiver Maddie Swan and touchdown runs of 13 and 10 yards.
The freshman finished the day on 5-for-10 passing for a total of 83 yards with three touchdowns and 36 yards rushing with two touchdowns. Sophomore running back Sarah Morris had a 14-yard touchdown run as well.
“The receivers helped me out, catching a few balls,” Conaty said. “It was fun. We played well.”
The Wildcat defense had seven interceptions on the game, including four by senior cornerback Beth Meisinger. Sophomore cornerback MaryCatherine McRoskey had two picks and senior safety Caroline Thompson had the other.
“The defense played lights-out tonight,” Meisinger said. “This game gives us a lot of confidence going into the rest of the playoffs.”
Though it was not quite the finish they were looking for, the Lions (3-4) made a lot of progress from the beginning of the season, senior captain Christina Bramanti said.
“From our first game to now we’ve improved so much,” Bramanti said.
Next Sunday, Ryan faces Pangborn in a regular season rematch, with a trip to the Stadium on the line. The first game ended in a 7-7 tie, the only non-win for either team this year.
Contact Zach Klonsinski at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pasquerilla West 25, Welsh Family 7
By MEGAN WINKEL
Pasquerilla West pulled out a 25-7 win in a battle against Welsh Family on Sunday to advance to the semifinals.
The Weasels (7-0) set the pace of the game with a touchdown by freshman receiver Monica Busse within minutes of the start.
However, the Whirlwinds (2-5) matched that momentum with a score of their own a few plays later and converted the extra point to take the 7-6 lead over the Weasels.
“We were extremely excited when we scored because we knew we had a chance in the game,” Welsh Family senior captain and linebacker Carissa Henke said. “We came out in the first half really driving on offense and holding on defense and were hoping to continue that in the second half.”
However, their hopes soon faded as Pasquerilla West’s offense proved its strength, and the team bypassed Welsh Family’s lead with three passing touchdowns to Busse in the second half.
“Monica [Busse] had an amazing game today,” Weasels senior captain and linebacker Breezi Toole said. “Without her catches, the game would not have ended the same.”
Pasquerilla West’s defense also gained momentum throughout the second half. The team came up with three sacks and prevented Welsh Family from any further scores to pull out the win and move on to the semifinals.
“It feels good to get a win, but we still have a lot of things still we need to work on,” Toole said. “We made some mistakes today, but overall I’m proud of how we played.”
Pasquerilla West takes on Mod-Quad rival Pasquerilla East in Sunday’s semifinals.
Contact Megan Winkel at email@example.com