On a night that saw touchdowns scored on the first nine possessions and offense reigned supreme for much of the game, Eli Boehm was the offensive star of stars.
Central Bucks West’s standout running back rushed for an eye-popping 324 yards and three touchdowns on 25 carries to pace the Bucks (8-4) to a 44-35 victory over North Penn (6-6) in a PIAA District One Class 6A quarterfinal Friday, Nov. 11 at CB West’s War Memorial Field in Doylestown
The win vaults 11th-seeded CB West into a Friday night, Nov. 18 semifinal at second-seeded Perkiomen Valley.
After CB West and North Penn traded touchdowns in the first half in a scoring barrage that would seemingly not end, the Knights took a 32-28 lead into halftime. Firming up enough on defense to hold North Penn to only three points in the second half, the Bucks made the big plays down the stretch to secure the win, their seventh in the last eight games.
The key sequence came with just over eight minutes left in the game when, after CB West took a 38-35 lead, an unintentional squib kickoff by the Bucks skittered down to the North Penn 4-yard line and was recovered by CB West’s Conor McFadden. Quarterback Ganz Cooper finished the super short drive with a 1-yard sneak (extra point was no good), giving the Bucks their 44-35 lead.
With North Penn driving, McFadden stepped up again to intercept as pass from North Penn quarterback Ryan Zeltt at the CB West 31 with 4:41 remaining. With Boehm hammering away with his punishing runs, the Bucks were able to kill the remaining time and kneeled down in victory formation for the triumph.
“When we got the ball back on the interception, we were pretty sure we would be able to finish off the game with the way we were running the ball,” said Boehm, whose touchdown runs included an 80-yard jaunt in the second quarter.
He prides himself on being hard to tackle.
“I had my feet under me tonight,” Boehm said. “It seemed like it was taking four guys to get me down on a lot of plays. I don’t think West has made it this far in a lot of years and I’m just happy to be part of a team that did it.”
With CB West running so well, Cooper only attempted six passes, but completed four for 133 yards and two touchdowns, including an 81-yard strike to McFadden in the second quarter where he caught a short screen pass from Cooper and outraced everyone down the left sideline.
For North Penn, Zeltt completed 10 of 15 passes for 186 yards and two touchdowns and Michai Cuffie rushed 12 times for 152 yards and three touchdowns. On the night, CB West amassed 510 total yards to 411 for the Knights.
“Tonight we struggled defensively and we need to clean some things up there,” CB West coach Rob Rowan said. “But we played better on defense in the second half and played complimentary football, and that was one of the keys to the win. Eli is very hard to bring down. He’s been a horse for us for three years and was tremendous again tonight.”