In their words: Breaking down the Shippensburg and Susquenita victories

16 September 2018


Adam Houser Sentinel

Adam Houser led the Greyhounds to an overtime victory Friday night against Waynesboro. (File photo-The Sentinel)

Each week throughout the season, we’re gathering the best comments from coaches and players from around the Mid-Penn Conference and Tri-Valley League. Here’s a compilation of the best quotes we heard in Week 4.


Susquenita 29, Williams Valley 7:

Setting the stage: Susquenita entered this Week 4 matchup having lost its last four games to Williams Valley dating back to 2014.


Susquenita coach Scott Acri on the magnitude of this win:

“I have to give [Williams Valley coach] Tim [Savage] credit. He came up to me after the game. He said, ‘No one has done that to us in three years in the league. We’ve been Top 10 in Class A in the state for 31 straight weeks and no one has done that to us.’ He came into our locker room before he left to go home and he congratulated our guys. You talk about a win for our program, and I don’t know anyone outside of our team and our coaching staff that gave us a chance last night. It proves that we’re in the mix in the league. We’re back in the conversation.

“It’s a big win for our program. ... I got a ton of texts after the game from folks and it was really one of those special wins that don’t come often in your career.”


On the Blackhawks’ game plan entering Friday’s game:

“They are a big, fast, physical team that can score a lot of points this year. We knew that we had to take away their bread and butter. Levi Engle is a heck of an athlete with his legs and arm. We knew we had to take away the deep ball that they hurt us on the last couple years. We did some things to force him into quick throws and making some decisions that he isn’t used to making. Early in the game, we were dropping seven or eight into coverage and we weren’t getting much of a rush. He hurt us with his legs — things that broke down. Then we changed what we were doing and went after him a little bit in the second half.

“They key on those big plays. They get the edge and they just try to run. … A lot of teams are just trying to hang on. And we just went after them. We said if we were going to lose the game, we were going to lose it by throwing everything we can at them. We adjusted to their strengths and sent some guys. Our linebackers were fantastic and we forced them into some tough situations.”


On the turning point of the game:

“I think ours was the very first drive of the game. They got the opening kickoff and went right down the field. We had a goal-line stop, fourth-and-4, and they didn’t get in. The drive took nearly the entire first quarter — a seven-, eight-minute drive. Once we got that stop and got out of the shadow of our own end zone… I could see it in our kids’ eyes. They believed in us. They knew we had a chance. We knew on film what we had. But we’re a team with 24 kids that has to do everything right. When we were able to punch one in and take control of the game, the kids were beating Williams Valley. That was huge. The score the last three years against them, we were down 21-0, 28-0, 35-7 early. … They believed that they could compete this year and they did. “


Shippensburg 28, Waynesboro 20:

Setting the stage: The Greyhounds needed overtime to edge Waynesboro Friday night in Shippensburg. Do-it-all sensation Adam Houser blocked a potential game-winning extra point and scored the winning touchdown from the wildcat formation in overtime to help Eric Foust’s squad advance to 4-0 and a share of first place in the Mid-Penn Colonial division.


On Foust’s team’s performance:

“We made some mistakes that hurt us and we didn’t seem to finish well. We made a defensive mistake late that nearly cost us the game. But our kids played hard. Waynesboro is always a tough matchup for us. They are a good football team.”


On the blocked Waynesboro extra point at the end of regulation that forced overtime:

“Adam blocked it. He blocked one earlier in the week during practice from about the same way. We just kind of thought he would. … He was able to shoot the guard-center gap, and we thought he could get there if we needed to to be honest. When it came down to it, he did. It was almost an expectation that he was going to save the day — there’s good and bad to that, obviously. When they were kicking it, we were trying to figure out if we were going to try to run a play or go straight to overtime. If they made it, it wouldn’t have mattered.”


On transitioning to the wildcat in overtime:

“We went to our version of the wildcat, getting the ball right directly into the hands of Adam. It is something we haven’t shown much this year, we showed it once last week. We just felt that putting the ball into his hands directly would give us an advantage. With the wildcat, he was able to find a seam on the right side, break a tackle and get into the end zone.”


On going for two after the touchdown:

“We were having trouble kicking the ball all evening and we figured that they would go all-in after Adam, so we handed off to Sharrow and he found the end zone.”


Reaction after the game:

“Waynesboro beat us handily last year, and we talked a lot through the week about not letting that happen again. It was a big week for us. The kids felt they needed to prove something. We  felt like we won big games already this year, but adding Waynesboro to it was important.“