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Middletown junior high football team ends with wins over Eastern York, Gettysburg

By Larry Etter, Press & Journal Staff
Posted 11/8/17

Middletown’s junior high football team closed out a terrific season with a pair of victories in their final two games of the year. 

On Oct. 25, the Blue Raiders traveled to Eastern York …

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Middletown junior high football team ends with wins over Eastern York, Gettysburg

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Middletown’s junior high football team closed out a terrific season with a pair of victories in their final two games of the year. 

On Oct. 25, the Blue Raiders traveled to Eastern York and returned home with a 40-22 win over the Golden Knights. On Nov. 1, the team played host to Gettysburg and put up another 40 points in a 40-27 victory over the Warriors. 

The young Blue Raiders had just one loss on the season.

Raiders 40, Knights 22

In Wrightsville, the Blue Raiders jumped out to a 14-0 lead by the end of the first quarter and then rang up 20 more points in the second stanza to take a commanding 34-8 lead at halftime. The lead swelled to 40-8 with 3:30 left in the third period, more than enough to absorb the two late scores by their hosts. 

Odell Greene scored from 8 yards out on the game’s first possession and Michael Tuffy added the extra point kick to give the Middletown team the early 7-0 lead. Greene scored again, this time from 19 yards out with 2:45 left in the quarter to make it a 14-0 lead. Runs by Jaydon Wotring and Tymir Jackson set up the score. Later in the quarter defensive plays by Brock Welsh, Jackson and others forced a Golden Knight punt that T.J. Daniels returned 50 yards to the Eastern York 6-yard line. Three plays into the second stanza, quarterback Dylon Zettlemoyer scored on a 1-yard sneak to push the lead to 21-0. 

Tuffy’s stop of a Knight runner on fourth-and-one gave the ball back to the Blue Raiders at the Middletown 49. Jackson, getting great blocks from his line, took it to the house on first down, blazing 51 yards for yet another Middletown touchdown. On the play Jackson made a great juke move at the 40 to break free for the long run. 

Down 28-0, the Golden Knights finally found the end zone on a 66-yard pass play. A pass play for the two-point conversion was good and cut the Middletown lead to 28-8 with 5:05 left in the first half. 

Not to be outdone, the Raiders answered with a 61-yard touchdown pass from Zettlemoyer to Derek Wall less than a minute later. The 34-8 lead held up until the break. Jeremy Wells intercepted a Knight pass with 1:18 left. Wotring’s sack of Eastern York’s quarterback on the fourth play of the second half set the stage for the Raiders’ final tally. 

Antonio Koser capped a 46-yard Raider drive with his 3-yard touchdown run with 3:30 left in the third. The Knights scored with 6:07 left in the game against the Raiders reserves and then added another score with just 28 seconds left in the game. 

Raiders 40, Warriors 27

After getting up early with a pair of first-quarter touchdowns (a 2-yard run by Wotring on the opening drive, and a 65-yard dash by Daniels with 1:40 left), the Blue Raiders absorbed a second-quarter rally by the Warriors to earn a 27-20 lead at the halftime break. 

The Warriors made it a 13-7 game early in the second period but the Raiders collected another score on a 30-yard run by Wotring at the 5:03 mark. Julio Rodriguez’s pass interception just seconds later set up another quick score by the Blue Raiders, the touchdown coming on a 68-yard gallop by Wotring, who also ran for the two point conversion that pushed the Middletown lead to 27-7. 

But Gettysburg scored a pair of touchdowns in the final four minutes to make things interesting. On top of that the Warriors scored the tying points on their opening drive of the second half, knotting the score at 27-27 with just less than 7 minutes left in the period. 

The Blue Raiders broke the tie, however, after putting together a grueling 61-yard, 11-play drive that used up the remaining time in the quarter. Wotring scored from 13 yards out to cap the march with just seconds left and the Raiders were back on top with a 33-27 lead. 

In the fourth quarter, Daniels stopped a promising Gettysburg drive with his pass interception deep in Middletown territory. After taking over at its own 12 yard line with 6:17 left in the game, the Middletown offense put together another time-killing drive that ended in another touchdown with just 1:00 left on the clock. 

Wotring carried seven times in the drive that also featured a 9-yard run for a first down on a fake punt by Daniels. Wotring turned Zettlemoyer’s short pitch to the left into a 38-yard scoring run that locked up the Middletown victory. 

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