Little Lions Rushing Attack Too Much for McDowell, 55-20


Nathan Grella , Staff Writer

A week ago, both McDowell and State College were laying on the points against lesser District opponents. For McDowell, a 49-14 win against Taylor Allderdice would seal a playoff win in Districts 8 and 10, while for State College, star backs Dresyn Green and Isaiah Edwards led the way to a 42-7 rout at home against Mifflin County in the District 6 championship.
A subregional thriller between the two teams for the District 6, 8, 10 final would be the result, as State College would lead the way, breaking long play after long play. McDowell came into the matchup off of a 3-hour drive to Saint Francis University for the matchup and left with a long road ahead.
State College started off the scoring with a 5-play drive, capped with a Dresyn Green score to put the Little Lions up 7-0. The following offensive drive would occur in the exact same way for State College, as 4 minutes later, Green would put the Little Lions up by 13 after a faked extra point. “Dre is amazing,” Fellow runner Isaiah Edwards commented, “When I missed several games, he took over and he’s been playing amazing, and with Tommy and Brady at quarterback, it’s a lethal offense.”

From this point, it appeared as though State College had a stranglehold on the Trojans, going up by 13 with time remaining in the 1st quarter, however, a quick McDowell touchdown to Hunter Sorenson, a key McDowell recovery on a Dresyn Green fumble on the ensuing State College drive, followed up by an Elijah Lloyd TD, gave the Trojans a fighting chance down by 7 with 3:33 left in the half. The Little Lions offense stalled in the 2nd quarter, only achieving one first down, giving the Trojans life

Only up by 7, late in the first half, and on their toes, State High had to create big plays on offense at this point in the game to try to maintain momentum. Fortunately for State High, the offense would not need to step on the field. On the kickoff following the Trojans touchdown, Isaiah Edwards picked up a bouncing kick at the 24, and running through a melee of blockers, took it to the house. “I just saw perfect blocking, Coach Nastasi called a great play and I saw the seam and hit it,” Edwards said about the return “I tried to make the kicker miss, got a little tired, overall, I was just happy to end up in the end zone.”

The State College offense exploded into the 3rd quarter. A blocked punt by Nathan Lusk gave the Lions the ball at the 50, which would lead to another rush by Isaiah Edwards to punch it in and give State High a 21 point lead. A fourth down stop gave State High the ball back and on the ensuing State High play, Cohen Russell took a 55-yard reversal to the house.

As if that wasn’t enough for the State High offense, backup QB Brady Dorner, achieved the highlight of the night. With less than a minute left in the 3rd quarter, Dorner took a read option up the middle and outran the entire McDowell defense for an 80-yard touchdown to seal the game. “It was pretty awesome,” Dorner said, “I’ve been waiting to get my chance to run it all year, it was amazing feeling myself running down the middle of the field and outrunning a few of their players.”

Synopsis: Another example of a team being outmatched. The McDowell defense was able to hold water for most of the first half, but better play-calling and execution from the State College side was the difference between the two teams. McDowell showed their youth against a more experienced State College team, suffering from Personal foul penalties that set their offense back in the 4th quarter. For State College, the Defense had trouble stopping McDowell running back Elijah Lloyd, however, they did what was required on 3rd and 4th down that gave State High great field position. The State High offense showed big play ability. Big play ability that had been missing against weaker opponents in previous weeks. “They’re amazing,” Tommy Friberg said about his different offensive weapons “We have such a great group of guys at running back, Dre, Isaiah even Brady Dorner can run the ball too. We just have so many threats on our offense.”
You just gotta stay focused, it’s the playoffs, just gotta take one play at a time, you gotta stay focused, be poised and stay ready to win.
What’s Next?: State College will play the winner of Hazelton-Delaware Valley for a shot at the WPIAL champ.