Moccia still putting up big numbers
By Jon Campbell, Delaware County Times
October 15, 2005
With his performance Friday, Moccia added to his astoundingyardage total over the last four games. Over that span, the bruising back has totaled 755 yards and seven touchdowns. And the Tigers have been victorious in three of those four games, with the only loss coming last Friday to Strath Haven.
While Moccia led the Tigers on offense, it was his defense that also proved to be a difference.
With Penncrest down 21-13 and driving late in the third quarter, the Lions were starring at a third and goal from the Tigers three yardline. Without hesitation, Moccia blitzed from his linebacker spot, hit Lions quarterback Greg Tyrrell and caused a fumble that was scooped up by Ted Seiler and returned the ball to the Tigers 25 yardline.
It was one of two stops the Tigers defense made when the Lions had possession inside the Marple 15 yardline.
“We’re out there fighting 100 percent all the time and it shows,” said Moccia, who moved his season yardage total to 920. “They scored on us on the first drive of the game and we were kind of sleeping. But after that, we just came right back.”
Marple (4-3, 3-3) received its most significant first half play from Sean Spratt. After Penncrest (3-4, 2-4) took a 13-7 lead on a 26-yard scamper by Pat O’Donnell at 6:23 of the second quarter, Spratt took the ensuing kickoff and darted 90 yards for the touchdown. A Ted Seiler extra point gave Marple the lead that they wouldn’t relingquish.
Not to be overlooked was O’Donnell’s performance in the losing effort. The 5-10 180 pound junior was a load against the Tigers defense all game, contributing 194 yards on 28 carries.
But besides O’Donnell’s effort, the Tigers defense was stellar down the stretch.
Once again, the Marple defensive attack was led by the defensive end duo of Mike Talley and Pete Massaro. The two chased Tyrrell around the pocket throughout the evening. And Talley’s interception of Tyrrell on the opening drive of the second half, proved to be costly for the Lions.
After Talley stepped in front of Tyrrell’s attempted shovel pass, the Tigers took the ensuing drive 40 yards on nine plays. A Moccia two yard dive capped the drive for the Tigers.
“We were watching that play on film this week,” Talley said of his third quarter interception. “My coach was going to have me hit the guy, but he threw it right where I was going to hit him.”
With the Tigers driving and attempting to kill the clock with a minute left in the game, Moccia took a third down carry, broke a tackle and rumbled 83 yards for the touchdown.
“We played well in spots on offense and spots on defense,” Gionta said. “But you have to give some credit to Penncrest. They played well.”