Kane Everson, QB, Harrisburg: A pair of touchdowns for the talented QB helped the Cougars smack Hempfield in the D3 Class 6A opener 42-0. Everson took advantage of a dry day to complete 19 of 21 passes for 235 yards, hitting Rynell Gantt and Donte Kent for scores.
Dresyn Green, RB, State College: The sophomore is part of a loaded backfield with options and rushed for 196 yards and a touchdown in a District 6 Class 6A over Mifflin County 42-7. He needed only 14 totes, averaged a staggering 14 yards per carry.
Adam Houser, RB-DB, Shippensburg: Houser scored on a 3-yard run on the Greyhounds’ first drive, a 65-yarder, and that TD proved the only points in a muddy 6-0 win over Northeastern in the D3 Class 5A first round. Houser finished with 90 yards on 28 carries, leading both sides.
Andy Shay Game Balls
Adam Burkhart, RB-LB, Central Dauphin: Sure the weather was miserable, but there is no doubt the Rams’ game plan against Central York was to ride the dominant offensive line and spread the carries around with Burkhart leading the charge. That’s what happened at The Speedway … except it took only two quarters to put the Panthers away. Burkhart didn’t play a snap after halftime, but totaled a game-high 162 yards on 23 carries with a trio of touchdowns. Behind an overpowering offensive line, Burkhart scored on the first drive of the game when the Rams went 80 yards in 13 plays. Burkhart carried nine times for 65 yards and scored the 2-yard touchdown and the extra point for an 8-0 lead the Rams never relinquished.
Keyshawn Jones, RB, Chambersburg: The Trojans came desperately close to springing the upset of defending District 3 Class 6A champion Manheim Township. Bottom line: Chambersburg belongs and made so many leaps forward beyond its 7-4 record. Jones, who will be back next season along with plenty of other members of this upstart Trojans squad, had a 91-yard touchdown run and still managed to rush for 64 yards on his other 16 carries to finish with 155 yard and eclipse the 1,500-yard barrier for 2018.
Jacob Loy, FB, Shippensburg: Went from a stud on the defensive side of the football for the Greyhounds and became a 6-foot, 190-pound fullback. Loy’s role is clearly to make some room for, and provide cover for, stud RB Adam Houser. His carries are like running-game gold in their value. And with each passing week since this mid-season flip, Loy has opened up so many options for this offense. In the playoff victory over Northeastern, Loy carried 24 times for 84 yards in the slop, giving him 491 yards on 99 carries the second half of the season. That’s 4.95 yards per carry on an average of 17 carries a game the last six weeks. That’s a new-found weapon in my book!
Michael Bullock Game Balls
Macklin Ayers, QB-LB, Upper Dauphin: Uncorked a terrific effort in Upper Dauphin’s 48-23 loss at Delone Catholic in the District 3 Class 2A semifinals, rushing for 97 yards (16 carries) and throwing for 152 more. Also had a productive night at his linebacker position, leading the Trojans (9-2) with 10 tackles — including one for a loss.
Jake Ramberger, RB-DB, Upper Dauphin: Produced 120 offensive yards (27 rushing, 93 receiving) in the Trojans’ 48-23 loss at Delone Catholic. Also came up to make five tackles.
Chase Herb, RB-LB, Tri-Valley: Tri-Valley’s talented sophomore did a little bit of everything in the Bulldogs’ 14-0 victory over Nativity in the District 11 Class 1A semifinals. Offensively, Herb rushed for a team-high 68 yards and caught one pass for 20 additional lengths. Defensively, he racked up eight tackles and one sack as Jeff Sampson’s bunch won its fifth game in a row.
Kolt Schaeffer, OL-DL, Tri-Valley: Schaeffer continues to sparkle as the season moves from October to November. The Tri-Valley League’s reigning Defensive Lineman of the Year totaled eight tackles. Schaeffer also registered a pair of sacks in the Bulldogs’ 14-0 conquest of Nativity.
Bryce Herb, QB-S, Williams Valley: With starting QB Levi Engle sidelined by injury (collapsed lung), Herb piloted the Vikings to a pair of fourth-quarter scores as Tim Savage’s club kept its hopes alive for a third straight District 11 Class 1A championship by blanking Marian Catholic 17-0. Herb’s 26-yard strike to Bo Raho in the fourth quarter upped Williams Valley’s lead to 10-0. Herb also directed another fourth-quarter scoring drive.
Jake Adams Game Balls
Justin Resto (OL-DL)/Donovon Ball (FB-LB), Cedar Cliff: I think I nominated one of both of these guys a few weeks ago after the Susquehanna Township game, if my (admitted fried at the moment) memory serves. Either way, the duo was absolutely destructive Friday in helping the Colts (9-2) snap a six-game drought in the District 3 playoffs, routing Exeter Township 50-6. Resto had a pair of sacks by my count, a handful of tackles and was also in on a few of the eight fumbles (six recovered) the Eagles were forced into. Ball also got after Kolby Haag and was all over the ball as well. And he added a 49-yard TD reception on a simple pass to the flat that he turned upfield and shedded a few tackles on to expand an already big lead.
Chris Dare, QB, Cedar Cliff: Was 6-for-12 for 150 yards and two scores. The 49-yarder to Ball was more his powerful fullback’s doing (but props for hitting the open guy, that’s the first part of the equation). The other TD, was pretty impressive in a miserable ran. Dare hit WR Jahiem Reynolds about 20 yards downfield after the receiver got behind the defense. It was a tad underthrown, but that’s completely excusable in the rain. Reynolds took it 43 yards for the score. Dare did most of his damage in the first 18 minutes before allowing RB Jaheim Morris to take over, but it was plenty enough to help build the Colts’ early lead.
Terrance Quaker, RB-DB-KR, West Perry: What a monster day in the Mustangs’ return to the playoffs. The definition of a game-ball performance, Quaker set a WP playoff record with 293 rushing yards (28 carries), including a fake punt rush for a score. He also had eight tackles, an interception, a forced fumble and handled punt/kick duties all night in the Mustangs’ 33-22 win over West York in the District 3 Class 4A opener. West Perry (8-3) ran for over 450 yards, asserting their will with ease all night. The Mustangs will likely lose next week against behemoth Bishop McDevitt, but this is a monumental win for the rebuilding Elliottsburg program and they should enjoy every bit of it, especially Quaker, who is now over 1,000 rushing yards this season.