Muncy opens season with shutout win

BRETT R. CROSSLEY/Sun-Gazette Correspondent Muncy’s Coleman Good eludes a tackler for a gain during a football game against Warrior Run on Friday night at Muncy.

MUNCY – The Muncy Indians began their 2018 campaign with a stifling defensive performance, shutting out the Warrior Run Defenders, 17-0. The first quarter of the season totaled 59 yards between both Warrior Run and Muncy, and included four punts and a turnover.

Three plays into the second quarter Paul Pepper took a handoff eight yards for a touchdown and Muncy never looked back.

Michael Kustanbauter rushed for hard fought yards throughout the evening. As much as the Warrior Run offense struggled, the Warrior Run defense was grinding against a hard nosed Kustanbauter who picked up six first downs throughout the contest. The combination of pounding the ball for hard fought first downs allowed quarterback Coleman Good to open up his arm against a stacked box for 238 yards.

Muncy senior wide receiver Dylan Wilt had a very impressive 2018 debut with 150 yards recieveing and a touchdown.

Just before halftime, Coleman Good dropped back and launched a ball 40 yards downfield where Wilt was able to shed off a defensive pass interference, to go up and meet the ball at its highest point with a defender draped on him. After the catch Wilt was in a foot-race until the 15 yard line where he was able to shed two more defenders and finish off his 88 yard touchdown reception. In the third quarter Wilt went up top yet again while being challenged by two defenders to haul in a 38 yard reception that would lead to the Isaac Boring field goal and final score of the game.

“It was a total team effort, I’m just excited for my senior season. I’ve been working hard all summer, my team has been working hard all summer. We’ve spent hours in the weight room. I’m just excited for the season. This was a great performance by the team overall,” Wilt said with a huge smile following the contest.

“To be able to balance the passing game and the running game is amazing,” Dylan Wilt added referencing Kustanbauter’s hard-fought night.

Warrior Run’s offense had bursts of hope throughout the contest moving the ball extremely well until getting to Muncy territory. There, the Muncy defensive line took away every opportunity for the trio of Defender backs to continue their march down the field. Warrior Run was forced to punt six times. After halftime trailing 14-0 Warrior Run was able to force a Muncy three and out, and drive 58 yards to the Muncy 10 yard line before being stopped on a 4th and 7. A bright spot for the Warrior Run football team was senior Jeffrey Burkhart. Burkhart opened up holes all night for the trio of Nathan Michael, Hoyt Bower, and Ahmahd Keyes. Defensively Burkhart made the key 3rd down tackle on five different Muncy drives or else the final score could tell a different story.

“Burkhart is a downright leader on this team. He plays offense and defense. He’s one of the hardest workers, he’s a weight room guy, he’s a captain, we expect big things of Jeff. He played extremely well. Defensively, he had a big stop on the goal line, with things we worked on all week.” Warrior Run coach Chris Long said of his senior defensive and offensive tackle.

“We talk about this every year. When we come into two a days, it’s win number one. Get win number one and we’ll go from there, our kids came out to play and we got our first victory,” A joyous Sean Tetreault said following his teams opening win.

“We have great running backs across the board, Paul Pepper made some big plays, Bailey Hadzinikolov, Kustanbauter, even Coleman Good. They’re really tough, our O-line gave us holes, and they took advantage of it thats for sure,” Tetreault added.

Paul Pepper throughout the night made scrappy plays that woke up the Stanley T. Schuyhler stadium. Pepper found ways to make defenders miss turning what looked to be negative or no gains into exciting game changing plays before plugging in the first score of the evening. As quickly as the excitement came, it was gone, and the faces on the Indians coaching staff and players showed that as they trudged back towards their locker room.

“We’re back to work, we have Cowanesque Valley at Cowanesque Valley, it’s not a short trip for us at all so we’ve got to stay focused.” Coach Tetreault reiterated.

With the big play weaponry Coleman Good, Dylan Wilt and Paul Pepper bring to the table, Muncy looks to be on the path to an exciting season.