SOUTH WESTERN MUSTANGS GRIDIRON 2006-14
By Bill Engelhardt
Last Friday evening, November 24, the number 2 seeded Mustangs of South Western hosted the number 6 seeded Barons of Manheim Central at the Mustang Corral in the semifinal round of the class AAA District 3 playoffs and dethroned them with a 20-15 victory. The Barons had won the District 3 title for the last 3 years and 15 out of the last 17.
Quarterback J. C. Laughlin has added to his new school records with 20 touchdown passes for the season and 28 for his career. His 1,225-yards passing so far in 2006 already puts him in 1st place for season passing yardage, surpassing the record of 1,188-yards set by Doug Seidenstricker in 1990. His 900-yards passing in 2005 and 1,225 -yards so far in 2006 puts him in 2nd place on the school career passing yardage list with 2,125-yards.
The Barons opened the game by going three and out and punting to the Mustangs. The Mustangs started at their 38-yard line and advanced to midfield before Ben Fitzkee intercepted a pass at the Barons 6-yard line to end that drive. The Barons then ripped off a 16-play 94-yard drive, featuring passes of 13 and 18-yards to Zach Summy and 17-yards to Travis Nissley by quarterback Tylar Stauffer, some impressive running by David Hanselman, and a 3-yard touchdown plunge by Tony Ferrari. Justin Myer’s extra point kick put the Barons up 7-0 at 11:54 in the second quarter. The Barons overcame Chris Wilson’s sack of Stauffer for a 7-yard loss to keep the drive going.
The ball then went back and forth on three punts and Fitzkee ripped of a 65-yard jaunt for the Barons, to the Mustangs 15-yard line. After a couple of penalties and short runs, the Barons turned the ball over on downs at the Mustangs 29-yard line. The Mustangs then went on an 8-play 71-yard drive, featuring runs of 2 and 21-yards by Tim Smith, 7-yards by Eric Updegrove, and runs of 5 and 5-yards by quarterback J. C. Laughlin, that ended with Laughlin’s 10-yard touchdown pass to Updegrove with 50 seconds to go in the first half. The Barons took a 7-6 lead into halftime.
The Mustangs galloped into the second half as Aaron Repman returned the kickoff 39-yards to the Mustangs 45-yard line. The Mustangs then launched a 10-play 55-yard drive that featured 5 impressive sweeps around the left side by Updegrove, with Chad LaGore and Chris Wilson blasting a path. Updegrove’s 4-yard touchdown on a sweep and Laughlin’s 2-point conversion pass to Tim Smith put the Mustangs up 14-7 at 8:06 in the third quarter.
Tony Ferrari countered with a 38-yard return of the Mustangs kickoff to their 49-yard line. However, the Barons went three and out, including a Drew Snyder sack of Stauffer for a 2-yard loss, and punted. The Mustangs returned the favor by going three and out and punting to the Barons 13-yard line. A 7-play drive ended with Tim Smith’s interception of a Stauffer pass at the Mustangs 31-yard line. Updegrove gained 9-yards on three runs and Tim Smith gained 7-yards. Then Laughlin lofted a beautiful 53-yard touchdown pass to Drew Snyder with 10:38 left in the game and the Mustangs were up 20-7.
The Barons didn’t quit and countered with a 73-yard, 6-play drive. Stauffer’s 53-yard pass to Fitzkee (with Tim Smith’s tackle on the run saving the touchdown) was the featured play and Stauffer’s 7-yard touchdown pass to Ferrari, followed by Fitzkee’s 2-point conversion run, left the Mustangs up 20-15 with 8:32 left in the game.
The Mustangs punted on their next possession and the Barons advanced 29-yards to the Mustangs 29-yard line. Updegrove then sacked Stauffer for a 6-yard loss and the Barons pooch punted to the end zone. The Mustangs soon punted to the Barons 30-yard line. Stauffer completed a 7-yard pass to Zach Summy, lost a yard on a run, completed a 9-yard pass to Travis Nissley and a 5-yard pass to Summy. Then the Barons last hope ended with 5 seconds left in the game when Tim Smith intercepted a Stauffer pass and the Mustangs ran out the clock.
The Mustang faithful, in an estimated crowd of some 7,000, stormed the field in jubilation. The 2006 edition of the Mustangs became the first in school history to win 12 games and hope to become the first class AAA team in the York-Adams Interscholastic Athletic Association (YAIAA) to win a District 3 Championship.
Drew Snyder and Tim Smith led the Mustangs with 12 tackles each, followed by Chris Wilson with 11, Jesse Smith with 8, Jason Gigous and Duane Rowlette with 7 each, Dan Dukes with 6, Eric Updegrove with 5, Seth Barnes, Corwyn Gordon and Cody Shue with 4 each, and Jason Sneeringer with 3. A host of players followed with one or two tackles each. Gigous leads the Mustangs with 138 tackles for the season, putting him in 2nd place on the school record list for tackles in a season behind Justin Mummert’s 145. Jesse Smith, with 102 tackles, joins Gigous in the 100 plus club for the Mustangs. Sacks by Drew Snyder and Eric Updegrove, 2 sacks by Chris Wilson, 2 interceptions by Tim Smith, a strip of a pass from a Barons receiver by Seth Barnes, and pass defenses by Updegrove and Jesse Smith and pass hurries by Updegrove, Chad LaGore and Jesse Smith were highlights in the Mustangs defensive effort.
Aaron Repman returned a punt for 8-yards and 2 kickoffs for 54-yards, with the longest going for 39-yards. Drew Snyder kicked off 4 times for 188-yards, with the longest going for 53-yards, and he punted 5 times for 232-yards, for a 46.4-yard average, with the longest going for 58-yards, for the Mustangs.
Bryan Bosley, Donnie Brady, Dan Dukes, Jason Gigous, Corwyn Gordon, Chad LaGore, Dale Mills, Cody Shue, Jesse Smith, Jason Sneeringer, Drew Snyder, Eric Updegrove and Chris Wilson manned the offensive and defensive line and linebacker positions. Seth Barnes, Duane Rowlette, Tim Smith, Mike Stremmel and Kory Yelton patrolled the secondary.
The South Western Mustangs gained 168-yards rushing and 73-yards passing for a total of 241 yards of offense for the game. Tim Smith led the Mustangs with 73-yards rushing (He leads the team with 971-yards on 147 carries for the season), followed by Eric Updegrove with 53-yards, including the 4-yard touchdown, Jason Gigous with 27-yards, J. C. Laughlin with 15-yards, Aaron Repman with 2-yards, and Donnie Brady with minus 2-yards. Quarterback J. C. Laughlin completed 3 of 10 passes for 73-yards, including the 10-yard touchdown to Eric Updegrove and the 53-yard touchdown to Drew Snyder for the Mustangs. Tim Smith caught the other pass for 10-yards, and he caught the 2-point conversion pass from J. C. Laughlin. Snyder leads the team with 503 yards on 18 receptions for the season.
The Manheim Central Barons gained 158-yards rushing and 148-yards passing for a total of 306- yards of offense for the game. Ben Fitzkee led the Barons rushing attack with 70-yards, followed by David Hanselman with 37-yards, Nate Groff with 33-yards (He had 863-yards rushing and 29 touchdowns coming into the game), J. C. Evans with 18-yards, Tony Ferrari with 6-yards, including the 3-yard touchdown, and Tylar Stauffer with minus 6-yards. Quarterback Tylar Stauffer completed 9 of 18 passes for the 148-yards, including the 7-yard touchdown to Tony Ferrari, 5 passes for 57-yards to Zach Summy, 2 for 30-yards to Travis Nissley, and 1 for 53-yards to Ben Fitzkee for the Barons.
The 18-member Mustangs Cheer Leading squad was very impressive as they roused the many faithful Mustangs fans among the spirited hometown crowd. The Barons Cheer Leaders countered with a crowd rousing performance for the many faithful fans that made the long trip to the Mustang Corral.
The 110 member strong South Western Mustang Marching Band, 9-time Cavalcade of Bands Champion, a 2000 Tournament of Bands Champion and US Scholastic Band Champion provided the pre-game entertainment with the 2006 musical program entitled “Colourful Rythms,” which featured musical themes from the Millennium Celebration at Epcot Center, including “Time Prologue,” “Chaos,” “Life” and “Celebration.” Then followed the main theme from the Cirque du Soleil production, “Journey of Man” and “Tribal Mustang.” The closing number was a “lilting” Irish melody leading to the majestic strains of “We Go On.” The Barons Marching Band put on a rousing halftime program entitled “Rock The World.”
The Mustangs of South Western are 12-1-0 overall and 7-0-0 in York Area Interscholastic Athletic Association (YAIAA) Division I league play.
Don Seidenstricker has a 166-63-1 (.725) record as coach of the Mustangs, who have a career record of 307-181-8. The results of the 496 games played in the history of the South Western Mustangs are a career .629 winning percentage and a .635 non-losing percentage.
The number 2 seeded Mustangs will meet the number 8 seeded Patriots of Red Land at Hershey Park Stadium for the District 3 Championship at 7PM on December 1. The Patriots (12-1 overall, 6-1 Mid-Penn Keystone Division) are coming off of a 21-17 victory over the number 4 seeded Colonials of New Oxford. From here it looks like the Mustangs are ready to continue their winning ways and move on to the State playoff hunt. GO MUSTANGS GO.