BERWICK — Berwick was unable to get more than a yard into Pittston Area territory in the first quarter of Friday night’s game at Crispin Field.
Once the Bulldogs got started, however, they piled up the points in a hurry.
Berwick scored seven times in less than 19 minutes to produce all the scoring in a 38-0 Wyoming Valley Conference Class 4A Division romp.
Alex Force ran for three touchdowns and threw for another, but he was not alone in producing the second straight rout by the Bulldogs to begin the season.
With the help of long snap problems by Pittston Area, Berwick blocked one punt for a safety, partially blocked another and rushed another into a negative-yardage kick.
Berwick’s defense put Pittston Area in long-yardage situations, then took advantage of it, mixing a series of blitzes that led to six sacks. Pittston Area had two other big losses on bad shot-gun snaps that it just covered quickly with Bulldogs closing in.
The Patriots went into the fourth quarter with minus-20 net rushing yards.
Force surpassed 100 yards both rushing and passing.
The senior quarterback had a 51-yard run to set up a second-quarter touchdown, then took his last three carries 1, 27 and 21 yards for touchdowns. He threw for 108 yards without attempting a pass in the second half after going 7-for-13 in the first.
Ryan Laubach blocked the punt, which Blaine Cleaver wound up knocking out of the back of the end zone while trying to cover it for a touchdown.
Dallas Schecterly had two of the sacks. Mason Laubach had one and assisted on one of Schechterly’s as Berwick posted its second straight shutout win.
After an evenly played first quarter, Berwick outgained Pittston Area, 281-12, in the second quarter and the first 7:20 of the third quarter to put the rest of the game into the Mercy Rule.
Schecterly and Laubach combined on the 15-yard sack on fourth down on the first play of the second quarter after Pittston Area had gotten as close as the 15 with the help of a Berwick fumble.
Force rolled right and hit Justin Robbins for 52 yards on the next play, then found Blake Maurer with the 10-yard touchdown pass.
The Bulldogs had extra points blocked by Mike Coe following a 12-yard Teagan Wilk touchdown run and Force’s first score, but that did not stop them from going for and getting Jarrete Groshek’s 23-yard field goal on the final play of the half for a 22-0 lead.
Berwick added two touchdowns in its first eight offensive plays of the second half, sandwiching them around the safety on the punt. It started both scoring drives at the Pittston Area 45.
The Patriots fell to 1-1.
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