It wasn’t a scoring drive, but you could argue it was one of the most important series of Friday night’s game against Bangor.
While Salisbury already held a sizable lead at 29-0 early in the second quarter, the Slaters drove down the field 81 yards to set up a first-and-goal at Salisbury’s 4-yard line. But instead of folding, something that seemed too much of a commonality in recent years, the Falcons halted Bangor on four straight plays, including the last two from the 1-yard line.
Friday night’s drubbing of Bangor was Salisbury’s most complete game of the season on both sides of the ball. The Falcons are hoping that trend continues as the official midway mark of the Colonial League season hits on Friday night.
Salisbury (2-2), however, won’t be on the field until Saturday afternoon when it travels to Pen Argyl (0-4) in search of the team’s first back-to-back wins since Weeks 2 and 3 last year. It’s also an opportunity for the Falcons to get over the .500 plateau for the first time since Week 4 of 2014.
It didn’t take long for freshman Mackenzie Groff to raise the eyebrows of the Ursinus womens soccer team’s coaching staff.
In a preseason scrimmage against DeSales, Groff scored her first collegiate goal for the Bears after pouring in 43 as a Salisbury High School senior.
Groff didn’t start that preseason matchup, but she made an immediate impact after being subbed in 20 minutes into the first of three 30-minute periods. That moment not only gave the coaching staff trust in the freshman, but Groff gained plenty of confidence.
With Salisbury tennis players having district team duals on their minds, head coach Rob Benson knows that collecting wins at this point in the season is crucial. It’s even more important with his team currently the final seed in the eight-team tournament scheduled for October 20.
Saturday’s conference matchup with Bangor was more than just an early-season league showdown. With two of their next three Colonial League games among the league favorites, a strong showing against Bangor was critical for the Lady Falcon soccer team.
Salisbury certainly put forth a strong showing. Five different players scored on Saturday afternoon, including two from junior Caylin Meikrantz, that positioned the Falcons (4-1 in Colonial League) into third place as of Sunday with a 6-0 shutout over the Slaters (1-2 in Colonial League).
There was plenty of hype surrounding the Notre Dame (Green Pond) football team after knocking off Northwestern and Catasauqua in the first two weeks of the season.
The Crusaders, despite not winning a game in 2014, continued to prove that hype wasn’t a fluke with last week’s performance against Salisbury.
Former Pius X quarterback Tre Jordan threw for 356 yards, ran for 89 more, and scored six touchdowns (four passing) that led a Crusader (3-0) offense that put up 574 total yards of offense in their 52-28 win on Friday night.
When it comes down to the end of the season, Salisbury might look back at having one of the toughest starts to 2015.
The Falcons weren’t dealt any favors opening against Saucon Valley, a tri-champion in the Colonial League last year, in Week 1. Two weeks later they hosted a Notre Dame (Green Pond) squad that’s also one of the league favorites.
While Salisbury did show signs of optimism and spurts of success in both games, both ended with tallies in the loss column.
Fresh off one of their most convincing victories in the Andy Cerco era, Salisbury is looking to take another step forward this season.
Last week’s 41-2 win over Palisades was tied for the highest margin of victory a Salisbury team has seen in the last three-plus years. The Falcons defeated Catasauqua 49-10 last year, but last week’s showing against the Pirates is what Cerco has been looking for from his squad.
You don’t have to veer too much from last year’s meeting with Palisades to know just how much of an impact turnovers can have in halting a team’s momentum.
Rewind to last September and Salisbury trailed Palisades by just a point heading into halftime, 13-12. But over the final 24 minutes, the Falcons committed three turnovers that helped the Pirates run away with a 33-12 victory.
After holding Saucon Valley to just two yards and a three-and-out on the Panthers’ first offensive possession deep in their own territory, Devin Irwin’s punt return positioned Salisbury with a prime opportunity on their second series.
While a first down at the Panthers’ 11-yard line put the Falcons in a promising scoring position early, they couldn’t take advantage of that gift.