CAMBRIDGE SPRINGS -The last time Youngsville High School had a football team this good, many of the team's current players' fathers were years away from being born.
The Eagles improved to 7-0 for the first time since 1966 with a 41-0 victory over Cambridge Springs Friday at Baird Field. With the win, Youngsville clinched its first District 10 Class A playoff berth since 1994 - the year of birth for many of the team's talented seniors.
Despite the lopsided final score, it wasn't Youngsville's cleanest performance of the season. The team turned the ball over twice and committed six penalties. Despite the mistakes, the end result was something that the Eagles are quickly becoming accustomed to - a victory in dominating fashion.
One week after jumping out to a 28-0 lead over Eisenhower, Youngsville saw its Blue Devil opposition catch the first break of the game. Cambridge attempted an onside kick to start the game and recovered at their own 46-yard line.
On a fourth and six from the 50, the Blue Devils attempted a fake punt and quarterback Shawn Reynolds had Colton Noble open downfield for a first down - and possibly a touchdown. Noble couldn't haul in the pass and the Eagles took advantage and quickly stole the momentum away.
On Youngsville's first play from scrimmage, wideout Dalton Maze was left completely uncovered near the Eagles' sideline. The Youngsville coaching staff alerted quarterback Cory Craig who hurried the snap and hit Maze who raced 34 yards all the way to the Cambridge 16. Three plays later, Jordan Gurdak trotted into the endzone from eight yards out to put the Eagles up 6-0. The extra point try failed after a poor snap from the Eagles' center.
The Eagles failed to score on their next possession and punter Sam Lucas sent the ball inside the Cambridge 20 where it was muffed by a Blue Devils player. Youngsville recovered at the 10 and needed just two plays for Lucas to score from nine yards out. Hardy's extra point made it 13-0 with 4:13 remaining in the opening quarter.
Youngsville closed out a dominant first half with a pair of second quarter scores. First, Lucas scored his second rushing touchdown of the half - this one from six yards out. With 0:53 remaining in the opening half, the Eagles added what was perhaps the prettiest score of the night. Craig dropped back and had all day to find Maze in the back corner of the endzone. Maze hauled in the pass and managed to tap one foot down inbounds to make it 27-0 Eagles at intermission.
Youngsville racked up nearly 200 yards of offense in the first half while limiting the Blue Devils to just 21 yards and a single first down.
The halftime break did little to slow down the Youngsville onslaught and the visitors scored a touchdown in each of the third and fourth quarters. The third quarter score came on the legs of Craig who rolled out to the left and found daylight for a 20-yard score.
With 7:34 remaining in the game, the Eagles scored for the last time as Craig and Maze hooked up for a second touchdown. Craig hit Maze with a 21-yard pass and Hardy's fifth PAT finished the scoring at 41-0.
Craig had an effective night passing, finishing 6-of-13 for 130 yards with two touchdowns and a pick. Maze was easily his favorite target as the senior hauled in five catches for 118 yards and both scores. The ground attack was led by Lucas who eclipsed the 100-yard mark for the second time this season. The senior finished with 104 yards on 16 carries with two scores. Craig added 54 yards and a score and Gurdak had 37 yards and a touchdown.
All told, the Eagles outgained the Blue Devils, 342-107.
Youngsville (7-0) will try to improve to 8-0 Friday when they welcome Conneaut Valley to Mike Shine Field for a 7 p.m. non-region showdown.
Youngsville-Cambridge Springs Stats
Y- Jordan Gurdak 8 run, 9:06, kick failed
Y- Sam Lucas 9 run, 4:13, T.J. Hardy kick
Y- Lucas 6 run, 6:58, Hardy kick
Y- Cory Craig to Dalton Maze 15 pass, 0:53, Hardy kick
Y- Craig 20 run, 7:46, Hardy kick
Y- Craig to Maze 21 pass, 7:34, Hardy kick
RUSHING-Y- Sam Lucas 16 for 104, 2 TD, Cory Craig 10 for 54, TD, Jordan Gurdak 7 for 37, TD, Sage Sivak 3 for 19, Jake Marino 1 for 1, Rocco Gatta 3 for -3; C-Weston Stafford 12 for 56, Shawn Reynolds 13 for 39, Devin Walker 3 for 9, Kyle Alward 1 for 2, Colton Noble 4 for 1, Devin Mitchell 2 for 0
PASSING-Y- Craig 6 of 13 for 130, 2 TD, INT; C- Shawn Reynolds 0 of 9 for 0, INT
RECEIVING-Y- Dalton Maze 5 for 118, 2 TD, Gatta 1 for 12; C- None