Whitehall-Coplay Press

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Zephs look for win vs. EHS

Thursday, September 5, 2019 by Jeff Moeller Special to the Press in Sports

Whitehall’s football season already may be at a crossroads.

The Zephyrs return home Friday night to host Emmaus in a key East Penn Conference (EPC) showdown for both teams. Whitehall (0-2) is looking for its first win of the season after they suffered a 46-28 loss at Easton last week.

Against Easton, Whitehall found itself in a 21-7 hole in the opening half as they struggled to stop Red Rovers’ running back Nahjee Adams, who scored on runs of 75 and 78 yards and rambled for 192 of his game-high 278 yards in the opening half.

But the Zephyrs roared back to score 28 unanswered points to take the lead early in the third quarter when quarterback Anthony Nanoah found wide receiver Allen Negrete open along the sideline and the senior dipped and danced his way most of the 59 yards to the end zone.

Yet despite recovering three fumbles, the Zephyrs’ defense was again their Achilles’ heel - 87 points allowed in two games - like it was last season as Easton responded with 25 unanswered points down the stretch and coasted to a victory.

Senior running back Ali Barkley had another strong performance as he ran for 85 yards and scored two touchdowns. Barkley ran for 127 yards with two rushing touchdowns and a receiving TD in the loss to East Stroudsburg South the previous week.

Nanoah threw for 241 yards and connected on a pair of touchdowns to Negrete, who caught six balls for 113 yards.

“I was happy with the heart and effort we showed,” said Whitehall head coach Matt Senneca said. “We got down 21-0, but we kept paying hard. We still have things to clean up.

“But I feel like we are headed in the right direction.”

Ahead for them will be a hungry Emmaus (1-1) team that saw their 21-14 lead over Nazareth at half evaporate when the Blue Eagles tallied 22 points in the third quarter.

Emmaus will be led by running back Brandon Camire who was a workhorse with 206 yards on 24 carries with touchdown runs of 85 and 82 yards.

Jared Groller has been an anchor on defense for the Green Hornets as he had 14 tackles against Nazareth.

PREDICTION: Both teams need this win as the EPC schedule starts to thicken and the district playoff picture begins to emerge. The Zephyrs have shown they can put points on the board and also shown some needed resilience with their 28-point response. Still, they need to stop opposing teams and will face another star back in Camire, who will get his yardage.

This looks like another shootout type game for the Zephyrs, but being back home will be a factor. A loss here can start a deadly downward spiral. Yet, they have the grit and determination to get it done…WHITEHALL 35-28.