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High School Football - PIAA District 3-A
Camp Hill 46, Millersburg 20
Indians fall to Lions 46-20

Millersburg's Matt Koppenhaver scampers straight through Camp Hill's defensive line but runs into a Lions' road block. (Sentinel photo by Lon Zeiders)
CAMP HILL • Millersburg saw its 2015 football season – and its hopes for returning to Hershey – brought to a close Nov. 20 at the hands of District 3, Class A top seed Camp Hill by a 46-20 score. The Lions will play for the D3-A title Friday, Nov. 27 at Hersheypark Stadium.

Much as they had done through their regular season, the Indians got off to a slow start. Millersburg’s offense labored to move the chains against a hard-nosed Camp Hill defense. Junior captain Christian Wingard did all he could to help the Tribe get a fresh set of downs, but the Lions made the Indians earn every yard.

The Indians and the Lions would eventually flip-flop positions early in the first quarter until Camp Hill quarterback Michael Shuster gained back-to-back first downs. Bill Williams rushed 11 yards and the Indian defense found themselves in trouble as Camp Hill pushed deep inside their opponent’s 20-yard line.

The first score of the evening came 10 minutes into the first quarter, as Williams lowered his shoulder and bullied his way into the end zone from 12 yards out. Williams also connected on the extra point to give the Lions a 7-0 lead.

Turnovers and mental mistakes would prove to be the Achilles’ heel for the Millersburg offense, as was proved on their very next possession. The Lion defense helped put the ball back into Shuster’s hands. Austin Hoke and Wingard helped make stops for the Tribe, but Camp Hill’s offense continued their rapid pace.

Just less than two minutes after his opening score, Williams crossed the pile line for his second touchdown of the night. The scoring play came from just three yards out. Williams sent through another successful extra point as Camp Hill went up 14-0 after one quarter of play.

When the Indians returned to offense, Austin Lehman gave his team a new set of downs. However,  the offensive line struggled to give Wingard much time to set his feet and look down field. The Lion  defensive front penetrated the Millersburg backfield with ease, forcing another punt.

On the receiving end of the punt return was Logan Vallati who made two Indian defenders miss him en route to a 42-yard touchdown, expanding Camp Hill’s lead to 20-0.

Similar to their previous drives, the Indians once again failed to capitalize on offense. With just three minutes remaining before the half, Shuster would connect with Jack Williamson to give the Lions a 26-0 lead.

It was evident the Lions had a clear advantage in the trenches as Wingard was not able to escape the pocket or find any open receivers down field, forcing another punt by Wingard. 

From Camp Hill’s 30-yard line, Vallati would begin sprinting across midfield and pass Indian defenders on his way to his second punt return touchdown of the night. It was a devastating one for the Tribe’s special teams as Camp Hill extended their lead to 33-0 following a Williams extra point.

The Indians’ misfortune didn’t end there, as the Lions would force another turnover on the Indians very next possession. With just under 30 seconds remaining before the half, Shuster found Vallati for a 58-yard scoring play. Williams’ extra point gave the Lions a 40-0 lead at the half.

But just as it has shown all season long, Head Coach and Brad Hatter’s squad refused to fold.

It was Austin Hoke at the linebacker position who would give the Tribe some hope to start the third quarter. After a Camp Hill fumble, Hoke scooped up the loose ball and sprinted 20 yards into the end zone for Millersburg’s first score of the night. It was an enormous boost for the Indian sideline as Wingard connected on the extra point.

The Indian defense – particularly Lehman, Wingard and Logan Troutman – also came alive in the third quarter, holding the Lion offense to limited yards and zero points.

In the fourth and final quarter of play, the Indians would once again put points on the scoreboard. After a drive that saw Lehman and Shomper make first downs, Wingard found Tyler Hesen for a five-yard touchdown. Wingard also put  in the extra point to cut Camp Hill’s margin to 40-14.

On the Lions’ next possession, Quinn Buffington relieved Shuster at the quarterback position. After a steady drive, Buffington found Kyle Welfer from 28 yards out to seal the deal for the Lions and punch their ticket to the finals.

The Indians would receive a late score from Duke Bolton, but the damage had been done and the game ended with the Indians down 46-20.

Vallati was responsible for three Camp Hill touchdowns, while Shuster threw for two scores of his own. Williams would rush for 89 yards on eight carries and cashed in on two scores.

Lehman was the leading rusher for the Indians and finished the night with 67 yards on six attempts. Matthew Koppenhavor and Bolton combined for 65 yards on the ground.

The Indians wrap up a successful 2015 season with a record of 6-5.


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