CHAMBERSBURG — Thanks to one long scoring drive before halftime, Chambersburg went from being in trouble against underdog Central Dauphin East to back on top for good.
The Trojans used that touchdown and a strong second half to post a 31-16 Mid Penn Commonwealth victory over the Panthers at Trojan Stadium on Friday night to raise their record to 5-2 (3-1 MPC).
Running back Keyshawn Jones broke out for his biggest game of the season, with 191 yards and two TDs on 18 carries, and running mate Jayden Jones threw in a highlight-reel 70-yard sensation of a run for Chambersburg.
“Getting that score before halftime was huge,” Trojan coach Mark Luther said. “If we had gone into halftime behind, that would have given them a lot of momentum.”
Starting at its own 14 with just over five minutes left in the half, Chambersburg got two first-down runs from Keyshawn Jones and a 12-yard pass from Brady Stumbaugh to Kevin Lee.
On fourth-and-5 at the Panther 36, Stumbaugh hit Sam Vessah on the sideline for 11 yards. Two plays later, a pass by Stumbaugh somehow found its way through the East secondary and Tyler Luther made a tough catch in traffic for a 20-yard touchdown to give Chambersburg a 14-10 halftime edge.
To open the second half, Keyshawn Jones ripped off 35 yards, but the drive stalled at the Panther 26. Luther entered and, with the wind behind him, nailed a 45-yard field goal to give the Trojans a 17-10 lead.
“We really wanted to put some points on the board there, and with the wind, we knew Tyler could make it,” Mark Luther said.
CD East’s next possession ended with an interception by Kevin Lee on a long pass by Zavia Flickinger.
It took only four rushes before the score was 24-10. Stumbaugh caught the East defense napping and ran for 61 yards, then Keyshawn Jones ran three times for 22 yards and his second TD on a 4-yarder.
Jones, who torched the Panthers (2-5, 1-3 MPC) for 299 yards last year, said, smiling, “I don’t know what it is about playing against them. I got some good blocking all-around and their defense was kind of spread out with just one safety.”
Mark Luther said, “Keyshawn had a couple of big spurts with a few long runs. When he runs north and south, he can do that. It was nice to see him have that kind of a night.”
Early in the fourth quarter, Stumbaugh had to sit out one play with a minor injury. Into the game at quarterback came Malaki Blair, so surely CD East’s defense expected a simple run to be called.
But it turned into a thing of beauty.
Jayden Jones was given a good hole by the left side of the Trojan line and he darted through. He was met by several Panthers, but spun out of a tackle, then spun out of another.
“All I know is I hit the hole hard, did a spin and got a great block from Kevin (Lee),” Jones said. “Then I spun out of another one, and just hit it from there.”
It wasn’t that simple. First, Jones had to maintain his balance after his second spin, which he barely did. Then he had to keep his feet in bounds, which he barely did. But then it was an easy run to the end zone after 70 yards of fun.
That made it 31-10, and the only other points came on a Shawn Brown run on fourth-and-goal from the 5 in garbage time.
While Jones, Jones and Stumbaugh rang up 328 yards on 32 rushes thanks to some quality blocking, CD East did not have nearly as much success on the ground (41 attempts, 132 yards), especially in the second half.
The Panthers’ Bryce Baker had 16 carries for 82 yards in the first half. In the second, he was limited to just five yards on 10 carries. He had a stretch of eight carries in which he was tackled for a loss six times, most of those on outside runs.
Chambersburg linebacker Tucker Perry said, “When they ran outside, I just had to fight through every block. We were a little surprised early because they switched their quarterback and used the wildcat a little more than expected.
“Last year, we weren’t that used to our new defense, but this year we’re doing better with it because we know where we’re supposed to be.”
East managed only 42 yards on offense in the second half until its final drive.
“In the first half, we missed so many tackles,” Mark Luther said. “We didn’t change anything for the second half, we just finished better. Our safeties had a better feel for what they were doing, got out wide and forced them backward.”
NOTES: Chambersburg struck first on a 21-yard run by Keyshawn Jones after Wyatt Hull recovered a fumble … East tied it 7-7 when Tyler Luther fumbled on a reverse and Isaiah Abraham picked up the loose ball and carried it to the end zone from 15 yards out … The Panthers took a 10-7 lead on a 42-yard field goal with the wind by Myles Mims … Jayden Jones also had an interception for the Trojans … Chambersburg plays next Saturday at Harrisburg, which lost 21-6 at State College on Friday, at 1 p.m.
Chambersburg 31, Central Dauphin East 16
CD East 0 10 0 6 — 16
Chambersburg 7 7 10 7 — 31
C — Keyshawn Jones 21 run (Tyler Luther kick), 4:19
E — Isaiah Abraham 15 fumble return (Myles Mims kick), 9:36
E — Mims 42 field goal, 5:22
C — Ty.Luther 20 pass from Brady Stumbaugh (Ty.Luther kick), 2:13
C — Ty.Luther 45 field goal, 9:33
C — K.Jones 4 run (Ty.Luther kick), 2:05
C — Jayden Jones 70 run (Ty.Luther kick), 10:19
E — Shawn Brown 5 run (pass failed), 2:25
First downs 12 12
Rushes-yards 41-132 32-328
Passing 8-23-2 6-10-0
Passing yards 73 53
Total offense 205 381
Fumbles-lost 4-3 3-2
Punts-average 3-42.0 4-25.0
Penalties-yards 1-5 4-30
Rushing — CDE, Bryce Baker 26-87, Zaire Fallings-Beverly 2-23, Brown 5-23, Nasier Thompson 2-6, Mekai Scott-Crittenden 5-(-1), Zavia Flickinger 1-(-6). Chbg, K.Jones 18-191, J.Jones 4-84, Stumbaugh 7-67, Andrew Kissinger 1-1, Ty.Luther 2-(-15).
Passing — CDE, Flickinger 5-14-1-65, Scott-Crittendon 3-9-1-8. Chbg, Stumbaugh 6-10-0-53.
Receiving — CDE, Trey Wallace-Coons 2-35, Scott-Crittendon 1-14, Baker 3-12, Brown 2-12. Chbg, Ty.Luther 3-15, K.Jones 1-15, Kevin Lee 1-12, Sam Vessah 1-11.
Interceptions — Chbg, J.Jones, Lee.
Sacks — Chbg, Wyatt Hull, Tyrion Hodges, Kyere Morton, Bryce Diller.