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Moving on: Clearfield pounds past Jersey Shore into AAA Quarterfinals

By Chris Rossetti

DUBOIS, Pa. – Clearfield survived a first half played almost entirely in its territory and was able to use a two quick third-quarter touchdowns to pull away from Jersey Shore, 27-8, in the first-round of the PIAA Class AAA playoffs at DuBois’ Mansell Stadium.

“Our offensive line did a great job,” Clearfield head coach Tim Janocko said. “And Tyler Stratton and Christian Lezzer took over the game running the football.”

The Bison, who are 13-0 for the second time in school history and the second time in four years, somehow led 7-0 at halftime despite Jersey Shore (6-7) having the ball inside the Clearfield 30-yard line on three different occasions in the half.

“(Having the lead at halftime) was huge,” Janocko said. “Field position was just awful, and we couldn’t get anything established. To go in 7-0, was just big.”

Clearfield, the District 5-6-8-9 subregional champion, made District 4 champion Jersey Shore pay for not taking advantage of things in the first half by putting the game away with a pair of touchdowns in just over three minutes midway through the third quarter.

The Bison took the opening kickoff of the second half and drove 60 yards in eight plays, all on the ground, to go up 14-0 on a 9-yar Tyler Stratton touchdown run with 8:07 to play in the third quarter.

“That was huge,” Janocko said “We wanted to set the tone.”

Clearfield then forced a fumble on the ensuing kickoff with Christian Lezzer recovering the loose ball at the Jersey Shore 37.

Seven plays later, once again all on the ground, the Bison were up three touchdowns when Stratton scored on a 7-yard run one play after Lezzer converted a fourth-and-1 play from the Jersey Shore 10 with a 3-yard run. The extra point was blocked, but Clearfield led 20-0.

“That was another turning point,” Janocko said. “This time of year, momentum swings, you are already up two scores, you stick another one in and it kind of deflates them a little bit. But I give credit to them, they played hard right up until the end.”

Jersey Shore, which turned the ball over on downs in the first half at the Clearfield 29 and Clearfield 10, lost a fumble at the Bison 1 and punted from midfield, had one last chance to get back in the game taking the ensuing possession after the second Stratton touchdown from its own 41 to the Bison 14.

But a 6-yard loss on third-and-seven and a pass that came up three yards short on fourth down gave Clearfield the ball back at its own 10-yard line with just under a minute left in the third quarter.

The Bison then took a little over five minutes off the clock driving the Jersey Shore 4-yard line before turning the ball over on downs.

Lezzer got the ball back four plays later when he picked off a pass at the Jersey Shore 37, and four plays after the interception, the senior scored his second touchdown of the game on a 26-yard run making it 27-0 with 3:40 to play.

Jersey Shore, which was limited to 100 yards of offense in the second half got 58 of those 100 on the game’s final drive scoring its lone touchdown on a 1-yard Utoafili Agae-Naipo touchdown plunge with under a minute to play.

The Bulldogs had the first real chance to score when they started their second drive of the game from the Clearfield 33 after a shanked 27-yard punt by Spencer Herrington after Clearfield had failed to field a punt after Jersey Shore’s first drive and had to start its own first possession at its 5-yard line.

Jersey Shore was able to move the ball to the Clearfield 24 where it faced a fourth-and-1 before a false start penalty, one of four false starts in the first three drives of the game for both teams (two a side) made it fourth-and-6 from the 29. An incomplete pass gave the ball back to Clearfield at the 29.

The Bison then went 71 yards in eight plays taking the lead on a 7-yard Lezzer touchdown run with 2:50 to play in the opening quarter.

The big play of the drive was a 38-yard Lezzer to Stratton pass over the middle on third-and-8 from the Clearfield 31 that moved the bal to the Jersey Shore 31. It was the lone completion of the night, on just five attempts, by the Bison.

“That got us out of a hole and helped us get that first score,” Janocko said.

After the teams traded punts, Jersey Shore looked poised to tie the game or take the lead when it drove from midfield to the Clearfield 10 on seven plays.

Facing a third-and-1 from the 10, Jordan Tawney broke through a hole and looked headed to the end zone when he fumbled the ball around the 2 1/2, and Jake Wingate recovered for Clearfield at the 1.

The Bison couldn’t move the ball, and Herrington’s ensuing punt was returned to the Clearfield 41.

Jersey Shore then drove to the Bison 10-yard line where a fourth-and-3 pass form Logan English was batted away by Lezzer at the goal line.

“They would get a big play, and we would throw them for a loss,” Janocko said. “Our defense played real well.”

Thanks to a strong second half ground game that saw Clearfield rush for 215 yards in the half, the Bison outgained Jersey Shore 337 to 201.

Lezzer once again led the way rushing for 154 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries. He added a 1-for-5 passing night, all in the first half, for 38 yards.

Stratton also went over 100 yards rushing for 106 and two touchdowns on 20 carries while catching one pass for 38 yards.

Agae-Naipo led Jersey Shore with 17 carries for 98 yards and a touchdown, while Tawney had 16 totes for 74 yards.

“Those guys are good,” Janocko said. “I knew they were going to be a good football team. They overcome some injuries halfway through the season, won four in a row and won a district championship. I knew this was going to be a tough football game.”

Clearfield will face Berwick in the PIAA quarterfinals next week at a site and time to be determined. The Bison last made the quarterfinals in 2010 losing 55-20 to Allentown Central Catholic.

“We’ve had 13 wins two times in the last four years,” Janocko said. “These kids want to take another step farther. That’s our goal right now, to try to take it one more step and see what happens.”

NOTES – Clearfield will be in the PIAA quarterfinals for the fourth time in school history and the third time in Class AAA – the Bison went to the Class AAAA quarterfinals in 1994 … Friday night’s PIAA playoff game was the 16th in school history, the most by any District 9 team. Smethport has played in 15 PIAA playoff games and Karns City 11 … Clearfield has won seven PIAA Playoff games, the second most in D9 history behind Smethport’s nine … Lezzer, who last week became the sixth player in District 9 history to rush for 4,000 career yards, has 1,895 yards this season … Jersey Shore was 0-10 last year and started this season 2-6 before winning four in a row and the District 4 title, its first since 1999.

CLEARFIELD 27, JERSEY SHORE 8

Score by Quarters

Jersey Shore 0 0 0 8 – 8

Cleafield 7 0 13 7 – 27

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

C – Christian Lezzer 7 run (Spencer Herrington kick), 2:50

Third Quarter

C- Tyler Stratton 9 run (Herrington kick), 8:07

C – Stratton 7 run (kick blocked), 4:55

Fourth Quarter

C- Lezzer 26 run (Herrington kick), 3:40

JS – Utoafili Agae-Naipo 1 run (Derek Leese pass from Logan English), 0:32

TEAM STATS

JS                    C

First Downs                13                    16

Rushes-Yards              40-201             50-299

Passing Yards             83                    38

Comp-Att-Int              10-19-2            1-5-1`

Total Yards                 284                  337

Fumbles-Lost              2-2                   1-0

Penalties-Yards           3-15                 3-15

Punts-Avg.                  2-47.5              3-29.7

INDIVIDUAL STATS

Rushing – Jersey Shore: Utoafili Agae-Naipo 17-98, Jordan Tawney 16-74, Logan English 6-27, Dylan Hamm 1-2. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 22-154, Tyler Stratton 20-106, Seth Caldwell 2-2, Seth Ford 5-38, Team 1-minus 1.

Passing: Jersey Shore: Logan English 10-for-18, 83 yards, 2 interceptions. Travis Bradley 0-for-1. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 1-for-5, 38 yards, 1 interception.

Receiving: Jersey Shore: Stephen Baier 1-10, Derek Leezer 2-26, Billy Boone Costa 6-37, Bradley Smith 1-10. Clearfield: Tyler Stratton 1-38.

Interceptions: Jersey Sho

By Chris Rossetti

DUBOIS, Pa. – Clearfield survived a first half played almost entirely in its territory and was able to use a two quick third-quarter touchdowns to pull away from Jersey Shore, 27-8, in the first-round of the PIAA Class AAA playoffs at DuBois’ Mansell Stadium.

“Our offensive line did a great job,” Clearfield head coach Tim Janocko said. “And Tyler Stratton and Christian Lezzer took over the game running the football.”

The Bison, who are 13-0 for the second time in school history and the second time in four years, somehow led 7-0 at halftime despite Jersey Shore (6-7) having the ball inside the Clearfield 30-yard line on three different occasions in the half.

“(Having the lead at halftime) was huge,” Janocko said. “Field position was just awful, and we couldn’t get anything established. To go in 7-0, was just big.”

Clearfield, the District 5-6-8-9 subregional champion, made District 4 champion Jersey Shore pay for not taking advantage of things in the first half by putting the game away with a pair of touchdowns in just over three minutes midway through the third quarter.

The Bison took the opening kickoff of the second half and drove 60 yards in eight plays, all on the ground, to go up 14-0 on a 9-yar Tyler Stratton touchdown run with 8:07 to play in the third quarter.

“That was huge,” Janocko said “We wanted to set the tone.”

Clearfield then forced a fumble on the ensuing kickoff with Christian Lezzer recovering the loose ball at the Jersey Shore 37.

Seven plays later, once again all on the ground, the Bison were up three touchdowns when Stratton scored on a 7-yard run one play after Lezzer converted a fourth-and-1 play from the Jersey Shore 10 with a 3-yard run. The extra point was blocked, but Clearfield led 20-0.

“That was another turning point,” Janocko said. “This time of year, momentum swings, you are already up two scores, you stick another one in and it kind of deflates them a little bit. But I give credit to them, they played hard right up until the end.”

Jersey Shore, which turned the ball over on downs in the first half at the Clearfield 29 and Clearfield 10, lost a fumble at the Bison 1 and punted from midfield, had one last chance to get back in the game taking the ensuing possession after the second Stratton touchdown from its own 41 to the Bison 14.

But a 6-yard loss on third-and-seven and a pass that came up three yards short on fourth down gave Clearfield the ball back at its own 10-yard line with just under a minute left in the third quarter.

The Bison then took a little over five minutes off the clock driving the Jersey Shore 4-yard line before turning the ball over on downs.

Lezzer got the ball back four plays later when he picked off a pass at the Jersey Shore 37, and four plays after the interception, the senior scored his second touchdown of the game on a 26-yard run making it 27-0 with 3:40 to play.

Jersey Shore, which was limited to 100 yards of offense in the second half got 58 of those 100 on the game’s final drive scoring its lone touchdown on a 1-yard Utoafili Agae-Naipo touchdown plunge with under a minute to play.

The Bulldogs had the first real chance to score when they started their second drive of the game from the Clearfield 33 after a shanked 27-yard punt by Spencer Herrington after Clearfield had failed to field a punt after Jersey Shore’s first drive and had to start its own first possession at its 5-yard line.

Jersey Shore was able to move the ball to the Clearfield 24 where it faced a fourth-and-1 before a false start penalty, one of four false starts in the first three drives of the game for both teams (two a side) made it fourth-and-6 from the 29. An incomplete pass gave the ball back to Clearfield at the 29.

The Bison then went 71 yards in eight plays taking the lead on a 7-yard Lezzer touchdown run with 2:50 to play in the opening quarter.

The big play of the drive was a 38-yard Lezzer to Stratton pass over the middle on third-and-8 from the Clearfield 31 that moved the bal to the Jersey Shore 31. It was the lone completion of the night, on just five attempts, by the Bison.

“That got us out of a hole and helped us get that first score,” Janocko said.

After the teams traded punts, Jersey Shore looked poised to tie the game or take the lead when it drove from midfield to the Clearfield 10 on seven plays.

Facing a third-and-1 from the 10, Jordan Tawney broke through a hole and looked headed to the end zone when he fumbled the ball around the 2 1/2, and Jake Wingate recovered for Clearfield at the 1.

The Bison couldn’t move the ball, and Herrington’s ensuing punt was returned to the Clearfield 41.

Jersey Shore then drove to the Bison 10-yard line where a fourth-and-3 pass form Logan English was batted away by Lezzer at the goal line.

“They would get a big play, and we would throw them for a loss,” Janocko said. “Our defense played real well.”

Thanks to a strong second half ground game that saw Clearfield rush for 215 yards in the half, the Bison outgained Jersey Shore 337 to 201.

Lezzer once again led the way rushing for 154 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries. He added a 1-for-5 passing night, all in the first half, for 38 yards.

Stratton also went over 100 yards rushing for 106 and two touchdowns on 20 carries while catching one pass for 38 yards.

Agae-Naipo led Jersey Shore with 17 carries for 98 yards and a touchdown, while Tawney had 16 totes for 74 yards.

“Those guys are good,” Janocko said. “I knew they were going to be a good football team. They overcome some injuries halfway through the season, won four in a row and won a district championship. I knew this was going to be a tough football game.”

Clearfield will face Berwick in the PIAA quarterfinals next week at a site and time to be determined. The Bison last made the quarterfinals in 2010 losing 55-20 to Allentown Central Catholic.

“We’ve had 13 wins two times in the last four years,” Janocko said. “These kids want to take another step farther. That’s our goal right now, to try to take it one more step and see what happens.”

NOTES – Clearfield will be in the PIAA quarterfinals for the fourth time in school history and the third time in Class AAA – the Bison went to the Class AAAA quarterfinals in 1994 … Friday night’s PIAA playoff game was the 16th in school history, the most by any District 9 team. Smethport has played in 15 PIAA playoff games and Karns City 11 … Clearfield has won seven PIAA Playoff games, the second most in D9 history behind Smethport’s nine … Lezzer, who last week became the sixth player in District 9 history to rush for 4,000 career yards, has 1,895 yards this season … Jersey Shore was 0-10 last year and started this season 2-6 before winning four in a row and the District 4 title, its first since 1999.

CLEARFIELD 27, JERSEY SHORE 8

Score by Quarters

Jersey Shore 0 0 0 8 – 8

Cleafield 7 0 13 7 – 27

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

C – Christian Lezzer 7 run (Spencer Herrington kick), 2:50

Third Quarter

C- Tyler Stratton 9 run (Herrington kick), 8:07

C – Stratton 7 run (kick blocked), 4:55

Fourth Quarter

C- Lezzer 26 run (Herrington kick), 3:40

JS – Utoafili Agae-Naipo 1 run (Derek Leese pass from Logan English), 0:32

TEAM STATS

JS                    C

First Downs                13                    16

Rushes-Yards              40-201             50-299

Passing Yards             83                    38

Comp-Att-Int              10-19-2            1-5-1`

Total Yards                 284                  337

Fumbles-Lost              2-2                   1-0

Penalties-Yards           3-15                 3-15

Punts-Avg.                  2-47.5              3-29.7

INDIVIDUAL STATS

Rushing – Jersey Shore: Utoafili Agae-Naipo 17-98, Jordan Tawney 16-74, Logan English 6-27, Dylan Hamm 1-2. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 22-154, Tyler Stratton 20-106, Seth Caldwell 2-2, Seth Ford 5-38, Team 1-minus 1.

Passing: Jersey Shore: Logan English 10-for-18, 83 yards, 2 interceptions. Travis Bradley 0-for-1. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 1-for-5, 38 yards, 1 interception.

Receiving: Jersey Shore: Stephen Baier 1-10, Derek Leezer 2-26, Billy Boone Costa 6-37, Bradley Smith 1-10. Clearfield: Tyler Stratton 1-38.

Interceptions: Jersey Shore: Not available. Clearfield: Eric Sellers, Christian Lezzer.

re: Not available. Clearfield: Eric Sellers, Christian Lezzer.

DUBOIS, Pa. – Clearfield survived a first half played almost entirely in its territory and was able to use a two quick third-quarter touchdowns to pull away from Jersey Shore, 27-8, in the first-round of the PIAA Class AAA playoffs at DuBois’ Mansell Stadium.

“Our offensive line did a great job,” Clearfield head coach Tim Janocko said. “And Tyler Stratton and Christian Lezzer took over the game running the football.”

The Bison, who are 13-0 for the second time in school history and the second time in four years, somehow led 7-0 at halftime despite Jersey Shore (6-7) having the ball inside the Clearfield 30-yard line on three different occasions in the half.

“(Having the lead at halftime) was huge,” Janocko said. “Field position was just awful, and we couldn’t get anything established. To go in 7-0, was just big.”

Clearfield, the District 5-6-8-9 subregional champion, made District 4 champion Jersey Shore pay for not taking advantage of things in the first half by putting the game away with a pair of touchdowns in just over three minutes midway through the third quarter.

The Bison took the opening kickoff of the second half and drove 60 yards in eight plays, all on the ground, to go up 14-0 on a 9-yar Tyler Stratton touchdown run with 8:07 to play in the third quarter.

“That was huge,” Janocko said “We wanted to set the tone.”

Clearfield then forced a fumble on the ensuing kickoff with Christian Lezzer recovering the loose ball at the Jersey Shore 37.

Seven plays later, once again all on the ground, the Bison were up three touchdowns when Stratton scored on a 7-yard run one play after Lezzer converted a fourth-and-1 play from the Jersey Shore 10 with a 3-yard run. The extra point was blocked, but Clearfield led 20-0.

“That was another turning point,” Janocko said. “This time of year, momentum swings, you are already up two scores, you stick another one in and it kind of deflates them a little bit. But I give credit to them, they played hard right up until the end.”

Jersey Shore, which turned the ball over on downs in the first half at the Clearfield 29 and Clearfield 10, lost a fumble at the Bison 1 and punted from midfield, had one last chance to get back in the game taking the ensuing possession after the second Stratton touchdown from its own 41 to the Bison 14.

But a 6-yard loss on third-and-seven and a pass that came up three yards short on fourth down gave Clearfield the ball back at its own 10-yard line with just under a minute left in the third quarter.

The Bison then took a little over five minutes off the clock driving the Jersey Shore 4-yard line before turning the ball over on downs.

Lezzer got the ball back four plays later when he picked off a pass at the Jersey Shore 37, and four plays after the interception, the senior scored his second touchdown of the game on a 26-yard run making it 27-0 with 3:40 to play.

Jersey Shore, which was limited to 100 yards of offense in the second half got 58 of those 100 on the game’s final drive scoring its lone touchdown on a 1-yard Utoafili Agae-Naipo touchdown plunge with under a minute to play.

The Bulldogs had the first real chance to score when they started their second drive of the game from the Clearfield 33 after a shanked 27-yard punt by Spencer Herrington after Clearfield had failed to field a punt after Jersey Shore’s first drive and had to start its own first possession at its 5-yard line.

Jersey Shore was able to move the ball to the Clearfield 24 where it faced a fourth-and-1 before a false start penalty, one of four false starts in the first three drives of the game for both teams (two a side) made it fourth-and-6 from the 29. An incomplete pass gave the ball back to Clearfield at the 29.

The Bison then went 71 yards in eight plays taking the lead on a 7-yard Lezzer touchdown run with 2:50 to play in the opening quarter.

The big play of the drive was a 38-yard Lezzer to Stratton pass over the middle on third-and-8 from the Clearfield 31 that moved the bal to the Jersey Shore 31. It was the lone completion of the night, on just five attempts, by the Bison.

“That got us out of a hole and helped us get that first score,” Janocko said.

After the teams traded punts, Jersey Shore looked poised to tie the game or take the lead when it drove from midfield to the Clearfield 10 on seven plays.

Facing a third-and-1 from the 10, Jordan Tawney broke through a hole and looked headed to the end zone when he fumbled the ball around the 2 1/2, and Jake Wingate recovered for Clearfield at the 1.

The Bison couldn’t move the ball, and Herrington’s ensuing punt was returned to the Clearfield 41.

Jersey Shore then drove to the Bison 10-yard line where a fourth-and-3 pass form Logan English was batted away by Lezzer at the goal line.

“They would get a big play, and we would throw them for a loss,” Janocko said. “Our defense played real well.”

Thanks to a strong second half ground game that saw Clearfield rush for 215 yards in the half, the Bison outgained Jersey Shore 337 to 201.

Lezzer once again led the way rushing for 154 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries. He added a 1-for-5 passing night, all in the first half, for 38 yards.

Stratton also went over 100 yards rushing for 106 and two touchdowns on 20 carries while catching one pass for 38 yards.

Agae-Naipo led Jersey Shore with 17 carries for 98 yards and a touchdown, while Tawney had 16 totes for 74 yards.

“Those guys are good,” Janocko said. “I knew they were going to be a good football team. They overcome some injuries halfway through the season, won four in a row and won a district championship. I knew this was going to be a tough football game.”

Clearfield will face Berwick in the PIAA quarterfinals next week at a site and time to be determined. The Bison last made the quarterfinals in 2010 losing 55-20 to Allentown Central Catholic.

“We’ve had 13 wins two times in the last four years,” Janocko said. “These kids want to take another step farther. That’s our goal right now, to try to take it one more step and see what happens.”

NOTES – Clearfield will be in the PIAA quarterfinals for the fourth time in school history and the third time in Class AAA – the Bison went to the Class AAAA quarterfinals in 1994 … Friday night’s PIAA playoff game was the 16th in school history, the most by any District 9 team. Smethport has played in 15 PIAA playoff games and Karns City 11 … Clearfield has won seven PIAA Playoff games, the second most in D9 history behind Smethport’s nine … Lezzer, who last week became the sixth player in District 9 history to rush for 4,000 career yards, has 1,895 yards this season … Jersey Shore was 0-10 last year and started this season 2-6 before winning four in a row and the District 4 title, its first since 1999.

CLEARFIELD 27, JERSEY SHORE 8

Score by Quarters

Jersey Shore 0 0 0 8 – 8

Cleafield 7 0 13 7 – 27

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

C – Christian Lezzer 7 run (Spencer Herrington kick), 2:50

Third Quarter

 C- Tyler Stratton 9 run (Herrington kick), 8:07

C – Stratton 7 run (kick blocked), 4:55

Fourth Quarter

C- Lezzer 26 run (Herrington kick), 3:40

JS – Utoafili Agae-Naipo 1 run (Derek Leese pass from Logan English), 0:32

TEAM STATS

                                    JS                    C

First Downs                13                    16

Rushes-Yards              40-201             50-299

Passing Yards             83                    38

Comp-Att-Int              10-19-2            1-5-1`

Total Yards                 284                  337

Fumbles-Lost              2-2                   1-0

Penalties-Yards           3-15                 3-15

Punts-Avg.                  2-47.5              3-29.7

INDIVIDUAL STATS

Rushing – Jersey Shore: Utoafili Agae-Naipo 17-98, Jordan Tawney 16-74, Logan English 6-27, Dylan Hamm 1-2. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 22-154, Tyler Stratton 20-106, Seth Caldwell 2-2, Seth Ford 5-38, Team 1-minus 1.

Passing: Jersey Shore: Logan English 10-for-18, 83 yards, 2 interceptions. Travis Bradley 0-for-1. Clearfield: Christian Lezzer 1-for-5, 38 yards, 1 interception.

Receiving: Jersey Shore: Stephen Baier 1-10, Derek Leezer 2-26, Billy Boone Costa 6-37, Bradley Smith 1-10. Clearfield: Tyler Stratton 1-38.

Interceptions: Jersey Shore: Not available. Clearfield: Eric Sellers, Christian Lezzer.

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