When a special player steps on the football field it usually doesn't take long for everyone to take notice.
For Loyalsock (5-3) on Friday night, that player was Kyle Datres. The sophomore quarterback and free safety scored in seemingly every way possible in Loyalsock's 41-6 win over Towanda at Loyalsock.
Rarely coming off the field, Datres rushed for two touchdowns, passed for another and returned an interception 75 yards for a touchdown.
Kyle Datres of Loyalsock picks up rushing yardage Friday night vs. Towanda.
"He's a special athlete," said Loyalsock (5-3) head coach Justin Van Fleet. "But everyone seems to forget that when he scores a touchdown 10 other players fought for it, too."
That was no different on Friday night, as Datres bobbed and weaved his way through blockers for both his rushing touchdowns and used great blocking down field on his interception return.
On a critical fourth-and-5 on the Towanda 27-yard line, Datres took the snap and quickly rolled to his left. Looking down field, Datres saw nothing. He quickly reversed field and scrambled towards the right sideline before cutting up the middle and spinning past the final Black Knight (1-7) defender and waltzing into the end zone, giving the Lancers a lead that they never relinquished.
"There was a huge hole up the middle," Datres said. "I just took it and got great blocked up front."
After the offensive touchdowns, Datres wreaked havoc on defense from the secondary - thanks to constant pressure from the defensive line on Towanda's quarterback Austin Markel. With just under 20 seconds left in the first half, Datres undercut a Markel pass - his third interception of the game - and dashed 75 yards for a touchdown, putting the Lancers up 34-6 while driving the final nail in Towanda's coffin.
"I got the ball and was running up the sideline and looked up and Aaron Hepburn put a huge block on a guy," Datres said. "He lifted him off the ground."
Led by Datres, the Lancers took advantage of a banged up Black Knights team, which was down to its third string quarterback in Markel.
And despite being the third-string quarterback, Markel came out as if he was the starter. On the third play from scrimmage for Towanda, Markel connected with Garrett Moiser on a 66-yard touchdown pass that was tipped by a Lancer defender before falling into Moiser's arms.
"They certainly have a good amount of athletes," Van Fleet said. "They have been ravaged by injuries. They have good coaches - James Wecker is one of my favorite coaches in the whole state of Pennsylvania - and they just have had so many injuries."
The Loyalsock defense got beat for the long touchdown catch early, but buckled down and shutout the Black Knights the rest of the way. And while Towanda didn't find the end zone after the initial score, the Black Knights road a strong running game from Markel and Justin Hunsinger to solid drives that ended in turnovers.
Markel, who plays with a style similar to second-string quarterback Noah Huff, used the option and quarterback draw play often, rushing for 52 yards on 18 carries.
"They started off the season with a spread offense and have had to transition in tight and that's hard to do," Van Fleet said of the Towanda ground-and-pound offense. "They have a great team and a great program. They are a very good team for their record, that's certain. They scared me on film and they scared me on the field, too."