Ruggieri, ’Paupack Pound Tigers
PALMYRA TWP. — Wallenpaupack racked up some impressive offensive numbers Friday night against Tunkhannock.
With senior Nick Ruggieri leading the way, the No. 4-ranked Buckhorns had 474 total yards and rolled to a 47-7 nonleague victory over the Tigers.
Ruggieri carried 15 times for 258 yards and four touchdowns covering 5, 30, 18 and 63 yards.
“My line was just amazing tonight,” Ruggieri said. “We knew it was Senior Night and we wanted to come out with a bang. We just got it done. I couldn’t be more proud of (the linemen). They blocked from start to finish.
“I just kept my head up and looked for the hole. If it was there, it was there. If not, I just lowered my shoulder.”
Joe Ingulli added 65 rushing yards and a touchdown and Manny Obeng also ran for a score. Quarterback Tom McCormick threw for 116 yards, including an 18-yard touchdown pass to Eric Smith that opened the scoring for the Buckhorns (5-3) just 1:56 into the game.
For all those statistics, though, the biggest play of the game for Wallenpaupack might have come on defense.
Trailing, 28-7, Tunkhannock (2-6) marched to the Wallenpaupack 9 right before halftime. But on third-and-goal, Exzavier Warner sacked Tigers quarterback Jack Chilson for a 17-yard loss. That made it a long field goal try for Jaxson Montross and his 44-yard attempt was wide left.
“Coach (Mark Watson) told me to just go full bore,” Warner said. “I was lucky that he turned back to me and I just wrapped him up.”
Instead of Tunkhannock coming away with some points and momentum for the second half, Wallenpaupack took control in the third quarter.
Of the Buckhorns’ first nine plays, they picked up first downs on six of them and scored twice to break it open.
“They were just bigger, faster, stronger. Across the board, they’re a very good team,” Tunkhannock coach Mike Marabell said. “Exactly what we expected. They’re a lot faster in person than they are on film.”
Chilson finished 14 for 25 passing for 155 yards, one interception and one touchdown — a 51-yarder to Garret Hopkins with 4:09 left in the second quarter to account for Tunkhannock’s lone score.
Contact the writer:
@swalshTT on Twitter