Coming off a tough loss in Week Three against Lebanon, Ephrata bounced back with a 24-7 win on the road over Lancaster Catholic on Friday night.
This marks the Mountaineers’ first Lancaster-Lebanon League victory over Catholic since both teams joined Section Three in 2018.
X's and O's
After a 10-2 campaign in 2019, the Crusaders have opened the 2020 football season 0-4.
One year ago, Catholic averaged more than 30 points per game through Week Three. This season, however, the Crusaders entered Week Four averaging a mere 7 points per game.
Consequently, Mason McClair, Catholic’s former starting quarterback, has transitioned to wideout. Will Cranford stepped in under center Friday.
Ephrata found itself with a 14-7 lead at halftime.
The Mountaineers (one fumble, one interception) and Crusaders (two fumbles, one interception) combined for five total turnovers in the first half.
Early in the fourth quarter, Ephrata dual-threat QB Miracle Wratto — who returned from an injury in the game — sealed Catholic's fate with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Owen Morrongiello.
Stars of the game
The Mountaineers' Joey Gunzenhauser connected with Taj London on two key touchdown passes (a 30- and 32-yarder) for 121 yards by intermission.
Led by Gunzenhauser (6 of 9 passes for 121 yards and two touchdowns) and Wratto (1 of 2 passes for 17 yards and a touchdown, seven carries for 24 yards), the Mountaineers racked up 206 yards of total offense.
Lancaster Catholic's top playmakers — Cranford (10 of 21 passes for 134 yards with two interceptions), Tony Cruz (six carries for 39 yards), and McClair (one catch for 42 yards) — were unable to mount a comeback, down 21-7 midway through the fourth quarter.
The Crusaders amassed 193 yards of total offense.
Lancaster Catholic will host Lebanon next Friday, while Ephrata travels to Donegal.