CUMBERLAND — At 6-foot-5, Chestnut Ridge’s Beau Bosch is easy to spot on a high school football field.
He’s awfully difficult to stop, too.
Bosch, a senior quarterback and defensive end, did just about everything Friday night, running for a touchdown, thowing for a touchdown and making the defensive play of the game in leading the Lions to a 21-16 victory over Allegany at Greenway Avenue Stadium.
Outplayed in the first half but trailing by just a field goal, the Lions roared back with a dominating second-half performance, outgaining fourth-ranked Allegany 199-68 and hogging the ball for 16 minutes after halftime.
Bosch put Chestnut Ridge (6-2) on top to stay, 14-10, with a five-yard run with 29 seconds left in the third quarter, led a gang tackle of Darion Lopez on an Allegany fake punt a few plays later, then hit J.D. Weyant for a 30-yard touchdown pass to extend the lead to 21-10 with 8:42 to go.
“The fake punt was a big play and perhaps the turning point in the game,’’ said Chestnut Ridge coach Max Shoemaker. “They had the ball near midfield and if they get a first down, they have the momentum.
“Our kids responded well. We had seen Allegany run that fake two weeks ago against Ridgway (Pa.) and had prepped our kids for it. But the kids were the ones who executed so well when it happened.”
Allegany (3-4) scored on a one-yard sneak by Trenton Eirich with 5:49 remaining to get to within 21-16 but was hounded all night by Chestnut Ridge’s defensive pressure. The Lions had five sacks, with Bosch getting three, and nine tackles for losses. Noah Osman intercepted a halfback pass with 1:07 left to seal it.
“Beau had some big sacks and I thought the pressure we were able to get on (Trenton) Eirich was a key part of the game,” Shoemaker said.
The first and second halves couldn’t have been more different. In the first, it was Allegany controlling the ball by a 15:30 to 8:30 margin. The Campers had 200 yards in the first half, all on the ground, but only 10 points to show for it. They had three holding penalties in the first quarter, and two illegal blocks in the back on the same play.
“We were moving the ball but we killed ourselves with penalties in the first half. It seems like we get one thing fixed and something else crops up,’’ said Allegany coach Tom Preaskorn. “Our backs did an excellent job and had no turnovers. But we just can’t have that many penalties, and we’ve got to block better in the shotgun formation. We can’t let Trent get back there and get tackled like that.”
After a scoreless first quarter, the Lions went up 7-0 on a 10-yard run by Matt Wiley with 6:50 left in the first half. It came after Kirk Robinette and Wade McGee sacked Bosch for a nine-yard loss, setting up third-and-18 from the Allegany 48. Chestnut Ridge quickly covered the 48 yards in three plays, with Trent Crouse running 24 yards to the 24 and Trent Lohr dashing 14 yards to the 10 to set up Wiley’s touchdown run.
The Campers, with 15-yard runs by Lopez and Dylan Shockey and a 12-yarder by Robinette, answered with a 71-yard drive and tied it 7-7 on a four-yard run by Robinette with 2:37 left in the half.
After a three-and-out for the Lions, Robinette burst through the line and dashed 61 yards to the Chestnut Ridge 17. Three plays later, Nate Condor kicked a 31-yard field goal with 29 seconds left to give Allegany a 10-7 halftime lead, which would be its only lead of the night.
“We made some adjustments at halftime and basically told our guys not to panic, that we’re all right,’’ said Shoemaker. “We just needed to play smarter in the second half. Anytime we can beat a team the caliber of an Allegany, it’s a feather in our cap. Our kids are resilient and they play with a lot of character and heart and I couldn’t be more proud.”
The go-ahead score came after a big Bosch two-yard run on fourth-and-1 near midfield. Wiley ran 41 yards on the next play to get to the five, and Bosch took it in from there.
Wiley was the game’s leading rusher with 15 carries and 116 yards.
“One of the big things in the second half was whenever they got in short yardage positions their quarterback was able to get the first down,’’ said Preaskorn. “We were unable to stop them short. They consumed the ball pretty much the whole second half and we never really got our offense on the field or in any rhythm.”
Robinette led Allegany with 11 carries and 95 yards.
The Campers, who have lost four of their last five, play at Northern on Friday.
“We just have to keep getting better, plain and simple,’’ said Preaskorn. “We have to try to keep getting better and if we somehow make the playoffs, try to make a run.”
Chestnut Ridge will host Fort Hill Friday night.
Mike Mathews is a Cumberland Times-News sportswriter. Write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org