|Panthers discuss their strategy pre-game
Panthers Rock the Warriors
3rd W in a row against Salamanca
Portville flew into the Black Hole of their favorite archenemy on Friday night, overpowered the
Warriors from Salamanca, and fashioned a sweet, but tough 37-14 victory. PCS went up 27-0 by half-time and had a shut-out
until the final 3 minutes.
In what turned out to be an extremely aggressive match, consisting of several personal fouls and
unsportsman-like conduct penalties (on both sides), Portville's balanced offensive attack and "go get 'em" defense did a number
RB Joe Holcomb started the scoring in the first quarter with a crazy 40-yard TD run. Three minutes later, QB Brian Nitsche strolled in from the one, breaking the opposition's spirit. Holcomb finished with 141 yards rushing, while Brian completed
7 of 13 passes for 142 yards. Two of those TD receptions came by way of Kirk Austin in the 2nd and 3rd periods.
Joe scored Portville's other touchdown, and Kicker Kris Young connected on a three-pointer during the fourth quarter. Brad Hill was fluid granite at the center position as usual, and Matt Blue made some big, important plays.
PCS was able to take advantage of four Warrior turnovers, including 2 big interceptions, one by
Matt Burlingame. Portville lost 5 fumbles, and there was a total of 18 penalties, many of them for
swearing, late hits, and one on a Salamanca coach. The intensity level was high throughout the game, despite the blow-out.
Utility Man Josh Haynes had one of the best games of his life, as did trench-man John Freeborn. OL/DL Matt Miller and company took care of Salamanca's interior, even though he and others were sick all week. Salamanca completed only
one of eight passes.
DB Dustin Sprague had a big hit during one of the late kick-offs, as he and several of the younger players got another opportunity to
gain valuable experience in a big game. Even Japanese AFS student Tetuia Yagi got to see some action.
Without checking the record books, this could be the first time in history that any school has beaten
Salamanca three years in a row.
"Brian Nitsche always comes to play, and he really did in this game, both offensively and defensively,"
noted one of the Portville coaches. "We are very proud of all of these boys and what they accomplished tonight."
During the victory celebration on the field, Nick Prozeller said it well: "I love this game".
Rivalry began in 1933
Warriors lead series 9-5
1933 Salamanca 32-6
1959 Portville 19-7
1985 Salamanca 19-14
1986 Salamanca 43-0
1995 Salamanca 53-15
1996 Portville 21-20
1997 Salamanca 23-14
1998 Salamanca 31-0
1999 Salamanca 42-6
2000 Salamanca 34-8
2001 Salamanca 19-18
2002 Portville 31-28
2003 Portville 33-14
2004 Portville 37-14
The Panthers (5-1, 2-1) are rated #12 in the state polls this week...and #8 in the Buffalo News.
Salamanca is on the honorable mention list of both polls...they were up on Catt-LV 36-0 at the end
of the 3rd quarter last week. Both teams are roaring toward destiny. Their gridiron rivalry has recently become
a regional hit.
The Salamanca Warriors - 80 years of smash-mouth football and football tradition. One of the
most storied programs in WNY - they've been to the sectional championship more than any other school in Section VI (followed
by Jamestown). At the top of the heap for years, destroying teams along the way.
Yet, Portville has beaten the Warriors (4-2, 2-1) two years in a row (not counting the Alumni Game
loss, ha) and this one is for all the playoff marbles. Everyone will be on their A-game.
PCS is 16-3 over the past 19 games, and with the talent they presently possess, they should be able
to win this game. It really depends on who shows up to play under the lights of Salamanca this Friday night.
Two other big games on Friday:
Undefeated Bolivar-Richburg at Cal-Mum
#2 Olean at #3 Springville
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