We’ve been operating this web site since 2002 and our live game audio broadcasts since 2006 and this is by far the strangest season we have ever been involved in. We hope this strange season is one for the history books, that we never see again.
Despite many misgivings the AD’s and administrators of the Central League pulled off a planned season of football. Yes, it was a shortened season. Yes, fans were limited in attendance. Yes, bands were limited to home games only and stayed in the end zone away from the few allowed to attend. But in the end they played their five “regular” games and then their sixth game for final positions in the Central League. No varsity games were delayed or postponed due to Covid. As we look around the state, indeed, around the country, it was a remarkable feat of planning and of players doing everything they could to stay safe and prevent the spread of Covid 19. The players, coaches and fans were rewarded with a season that most thought would never happen.
With all the limitations the Panthers had a solid year and finished in third place in the Central League at 5-1 losing only to the #2 team, Marple Newtown. The team averaged 6.8 yards per carry which is very good and is testament to the strong rushing foursome of Jaris Adams, Matt Shuler, Chase Barlow and Christian Mazur. Quarterback Ryder didn’t throw often but he made the most of it with a better than 50% completion rate, three touchdowns and no interceptions for a quarterback season rating of 201.92. Oh yeah, and he had 15 carries for 71 yards and six touchdowns including one run for 45 yards!
Greg Belville and Anthony Crawford both completed 43 tackles with Belville having three tackles for a loss while Crawford had two sacks and two tackles for a loss.
Everyone went into this season very concerned about the offensive line but their play was spectacular. Running backs don’t have success on their own talents alone. Someone has to seal off linebackers and ends and create the openings for those backs to have some running room. The ‘O’ line took on bigger and faster opponents but consistently managed to find ways to produce lanes and holes that led to all those rushing yards.
Let’s not forget a stellar defense which managed to put a stop to whatever offense they faced. As a unit they had 15 quarterback hurries, broke up 9 passes and had 5 interceptions. They allowed less than 115 yards gained per game had 12 sacks and 15 tackles for a loss and held their opponents to less than 17 points a game.
As always we enjoyed bringing you all the news and highlights on our web pages, our broadcasts and our Facebook account. Many thanks to Marple Newtown Tiger Radio for allowing us to pick up their audio feeds for our own audience and for inviting our own, Brian Carroll, into their booth to assist in their broadcast. A special thank you to BQpictures.com who provided great game photos which make such a difference in our product.
Let’s hope that by next football season our schools have returned to normal (or almost normal) and we can look forward to a great, regular season of Panther football!
See you in August, 2021!