WARMINSTER: Taking to the road for the opening game
of regular season play, the Skins traveled to
beautiful Claude Lodge Field to take on William
Tennent. On the Blue & Reds schedule since 1945
(first as Southampton High School before a name
change in the mid-50s), the Panthers are well known
to Langhorne. Always tough and competitive, the
Schmidtmen know not to take anything for granted
when its William Tennent across the line. Plus with
every game counting toward the National League
championship from now on out, tonights contest
takes on extra importance.
Winning the toss, Neshaminy elected to receive and
after the return they started up on their 21.
Elected to keep it on the ground, Hugh Hart directed
his troops down the field with Nate Hall chewing up
some big yardage. Running into a snag in close, that
opening effort ended in a Nick Tucci field goal as
he drilled one from the 22-yard stripe as the Skins
took a 3 point lead.
With the Panthers following drive ending on a Cole
Creighton interception of a Tennent aerial,
Neshaminy was back in business inside the enemys
50. Banging around a bit, it was Hart ripping off on
a nice run to highlight a quick drive that ended
with Blake The Big Bull Sullivan taking it over
from the two. With Tucci hitting the PAT, it went to
10-0 for the Skins.
With another Panther drive coming up short,
Neshaminy had the ball back after a short Tennent
punt. Then heading right down the field, it was only
a fumble by a Redskins back that stopped that drive
just short of nirvana. Holding the hosts to a three
and out, the ball was back to Neshaminy in a
heartbeat. Starting up at mid-field, they drove down
to the 20 before turning the ball over on downs.
With less than two minutes remaining in the
first-half, the Panthers werent done, though, as
they cobbled together a beautiful drive 80 yard
drive to score just before the gun. The PAT was
blocked by Don Palombra and Trokon Buesmaill, and
the teams soon retired with the score at 10-6,
Back out to start the second half, it was William
Tennent receiving the kickoff. But with the Skins
defense stiffening, the Panthers soon punted and it
was Neshaminy with the ball. Returning the favor,
Tennent refused to allow the Skins much offense and
that set the tone for the third-quarter as the two
teams traded punches with no decisive blows landed.
Once again coming alive on a late drive it was the
Panthers that showed some life as the quarter ended.
With the final period underway, Tennent opened with
a first and goal at the one-yard line after a clutch
fourth down catch to keep its effort working. A pass
play took it across as Tennent went up 13-10
following the PAT. Beginning an important drive,
Hart had his troops driving with Devon Brown making
a nice run that had the ball to the enemy 18.
Stalling out a Tucci kick missed from that spot as
the ball went back to the Panthers.
Taking their duties seriously, the defense held
Tennent to a three and out and after the punt the
offense took over at its 43 with 2:43 on the clock.
Nate Hall started it up with a nice six yard jaunt
followed by Harts pass to Denny Lord who picked up
25 big yards to the Panthers 29. Missing on the
first two, on third down it was Hart finding Hall
who took it to the 11 for a first down. From there
it was Hart finding Lord who spun out of one tackle
and then dragged another defender into the end zone.
Tucci hit the PAT and it was Neshaminy back in
Booting the ball to Tennent, the Panthers offense
came out swinging and found some serious ground
before going to a fourth and ten at the Neshaminy 32
with 20 seconds on the clock. Almost sacked,
Tennents QB escaped to the 17 for a first. And with
one second on the clock, he then found a receiver in
the end zone. The PAT was good and the score went to
20-17 for the Warminster squad.
With the Panthers playing tough they earned a hard
fought victory and congratulations and kudos are
due. For the Skins, now at 2-2 on the year, its
still a ten game season and there is plenty of
football to be played. Well look for them to come
back strong as they take to the road again next week
when they visit the Harry Truman Tigers.
See you at the game.