HARRISBURG — For the first 20 minutes of Saturday afternoon’s Mid Penn Commonwealth football game, Chambersburg held its own against Harrisburg.
But the Cougars scored twice in the final 2:27 of the second quarter to take a 34-7 halftime lead and cruised to a 60-14 victory at Severance Field.
“The kids hung in there on defense for a quarter and a half,” Trojan coach Mark Luther said. “It was a tight football game. But those two scores right before the half really hurt.”
Harrisburg (8-1, 6-0 MPC) scored two touchdowns in the first quarter.
“Their first drive took up about half the quarter,” Luther said. “We made them earn it. But then they started controlling the line of scrimmage and it’s hard to win at any level of football when that happens to you.”
Chambersburg (4-5, 2-4 MPC) briefly got back into the game when Harrisburg botched a punt from deep in their territory. The punter, QB Shawn Lee, took a couple of steps toward the line, then kicked a low ball that was blocked by Kevin Demory
The ball bounced into the end zone, where Lee picked it up and tried to kick it again. The second kick was deflected by Brady Deneen and caught by Evan Brown, who was able to reach the Harrisburg 6 before being tackled.
On the next play, Riley Harmon lofted a pass to the left corner of the end zone and Jermere Jones came down with the catch, despite tight coverage by Lee. That made it 12-7.
But Harrisburg scored on a 36-yard run by Neamiah Ewell, then on a 22-yard pass from Shawn Lee to Quincy Brannon — on a fourth-and-20 play. Chambersburg then went 3-and-out, and on the last play of the half, Lee threw to Elias Coke in the back of the end zone for a killer score.
Luther said, “We knew it was the last play of the half, so it had to go to the end zone, but we allowed somebody to get behind us. We needed to make a play there.”
The Trojans’ score in the fourth quarter came on a 19-yard pass from Ceagan Truett to Bradley Diehl. Truett was 3-for-3 for 45 yards.
Lee ran for 106 yards and two touchdowns, and another potential score led to a fumble that was recovered in the end zone by teammate Salem Penn. Lee also threw for 174 yards and two TDs. The Cougars out-gained the Trojans, 488-125.
Luther said, “Harrisburg is a good football and has some very good players.”
Chambersburg plays on Friday at State College at 7 p.m. at wrap up the season.
Harrisburg 60, Chambersburg 14
Chambersburg 0 7 0 7 — 14
Harrisburg 12 22 20 6 — 60
H — Shawn Lee 10 run (kick failed), 4:40
H — Neamiah Ewell 2 run (kick failed), 1:09
C — Jermere Jones 6 pass from Riley Harmon (Trever Luther kick), 9:13
H — Ewell 36 run (pass failed), 7:23
H — Quincy Brannon 22 pass from Lee (Ewell run), 2:27
H — Elias Coke 29 pass from Lee (Ewell run), 0:00
H — Kymir Williams 7 run (run failed), 11:23
H — Saleem Penn fumble recovery in end zone (kick good), 8:04
H — Lee 28 run (kick good), 3:06
C — Bradley Diehl 19 pass from Ceagan Truett (Luther kick), 10:36
H — Mekhi Newman 5 run (pass failed), 2:33
Rushing — Chbg, Antonio Harrison 8-36, Dayre Senft 1-20, Truett 2-8, Zar’manel Coble 1-7, Luther 1-3, Blake Reuter 1-2, Imari Watson 2-(-2), Harmon 7-(-3), Cory Kuhns 1-(-6). Harr, Lee 11-106, Ewell 12-86, Zymere Hill 4-43, Newman 7-26, Jaylon Lewis 2-25, Williams 3-13, Barry Daniels 3-9, Brannon 1-4, Lewis Dillard 2-0.
Passing — Chbg, Truett 3-3-0-45, Harmon 4-6-2-15, Kuhns 0-2-0-0. Harr, Lee 13-23-0-174, Lewis 1-1-0-2.
Receiving — Chbg, Matt Sylvestri 3-31, Diehl 1-19, Jones 1-6, Brady Deneen 1-2, Harrison 1-0. Harr, Brannon 4-76, Coke 5-53, Williams 3-32, Penn 1-11, Ewell 1-2, Newman 1-2.