WAYNESBORO >> Through the first three weeks of the football season, big plays on offense have sparked big wins for Shippensburg.
But on Friday night against Waynesboro, it was the defense’s turn.
The Hounds scored two defensive touchdowns, and running back Jacob Loy got better as the game went on to lead Ship to a 27-6 win in the opening game of Mid Penn Colonial Division play.
“Our goal every week is to punch the other team in the mouth,” Ship coach Eric Foust said. “We came out and played physical tonight and hit them hard. It was a fun night and a good night for the team.”
After punts on each of the first three possessions of the game, Waynesboro (1-3, 0-1 MPC) had the ball near midfield. The Indians called a run around the left side, but Shippensburg (4-0, 1-0 MPC) forced a fumble, and Max Kalb scooped it up and ran 45 yards for a touchdown.
Trailing 14-0 in the third quarter, the Indians ran a pitch play to the left, but the running back couldn’t secure the pitch, and Anthony Smith picked it up and rumbled 65 yards for touchdown to put the Hounds up by three scores.
Foust said, “It was fun to watch the defense score some touchdowns tonight. And for a lineman, Anthony can really run.”
Jacob Loy said, “We just try to play fast to the ball and hit teams hard for four quarters. We did that tonight and were rewarded with some big plays.”
For the majority of the first half, Waynesboro’s defense was able to limit the run game, holding Loy to just 63 yards on 17 carries. The Hounds’ lone offensive score in the first half came on a 44-yard pitch and catch from Zack Manning to Isaiah Houser on a post route.
But, as has been customary this year, persistence paid off for Loy and the ground game. After averaging under four yards per carry in the first half, Loy erupted for 126 yards on just 14 carries in the second half, breaking off five runs of over 10 yards, including an 18-yarder to give Shippensburg a 27-0 lead. Loy finished with 189 yards rushing on 31 carries.
Said Loy, “We knew their big guys played both sides of the ball and felt like if we just kept attacking, we could wear them out.”
“They really tried to take away our outside game,” Foust said. “But we just kept coming at them and were able to find holes.”
After Loy’s touchdown, Brody Rhodes took the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown to make the score 27-6. But overall, Waynesboro managed just 137 yards of offense and had four turnovers.
“That is one of the best teams in our division, so I’m impressed with how we played,” Foust said. “This is such a good group of guys to coach, and we’ve been having fun.”
Manning’s touchdown pass to Houser was his lone completion of the night. Max Kalb chipped in with 38 yards on nine carries. Shippensburg also lost two fumbles in the game and threw one interception.
For the Indians, Aidan Mencia finished with 13 carries for 49 yards, and Mikel Holden had nine rushes for 44 yards.
SHIPPENSBURG 27, WAYNESBORO 6
Shippensburg 7 7 7 6 – 27
Waynesboro 0 0 0 6 – 6
S —Max Kalb 45 fumble return (Rob West kick), 2:24
S — Isaiah Houser 44 pass from Zack Manning (West kick) 2:10
S — Anthony Smith 65 fumble return (West kick), 5:21
S — Jacob Loy 18 run (kick failed), 9:15
W — Brody Rhodes 85 kick return (kick failed), 9:00
First Downs: S 14; W 7. Rushes-yards: S 47-229; W 33-119. Passing: S 1-7-1; W 1-9-2. Passing Yards: S 44; W 16. Penalties-yards: S 4-35; W 3-25. Punts-yards: S 5-31.2; W 6-37. Fumbles-lost: S 2-2; W 2-2.
Rushing: Shippensburg, Loy 31-189, Kalb 9-38, Alex Sharrow 4-1, Manning 3-1; Waynesboro, Aidan Mencia 13-49, Mikel Holden 9-44, Chance Eyler 7-15, Jaylon Bean 2-7, Loan Wishard 1-2. Passing: Shippensburg, Manning 1-7-1, 44 yards; Waynesboro, Eyler 1-6-0, 16 yards, Bean 0-3-2, 0 yards. Receiving: Shippensburg, Houser 1-44; Waynesboro, Adam Wertz 1-16.