by Al Thompson, PA Prep Live
NEWTOWN SQUARE, PA – Marple Newtown’s players treated Friday night’s game against Harriton like it was a business trip. The Tigers are running out of time and running out of games to make this season memorable. So they decided to do something about it.
Marple Newtown defeated Harriton 34-12 Friday night in a game that was decided at haltime.
The Tigers (5-4, 5-3 Central League), having lost three of their four prior games, knew they had to start playing well to have any chance of making noise in the District 1 Class 5A playoffs.
Quarterback Anthony Paoletti did his part to set the business-like tone, throwing four touchdown passes, all in the first half. Marlon Weathers added a 14-yard touchdown on Marple’s first drive and the Tigers were up 34-0 at intermission.
Led by defensive linemen Mike Miller and Kyle Tobin, Marple held Harriton without a first down from scrimmage until there was 6:30 left in the third quarter and both coaches started to substitute.
“We’re very disappointed with our record,” said Paoletti, who finished 14 of 22 for 209 yards, four touchdown passes and an interception. “But we believe personally, that we can do so much more than what we have done. That’s why guys are flicking a switch off in their head, we’re getting more and more hungry every practice, every week. We’re excited at being 5-4 now and playing a game next week, being in the playoffs. We can’t be any more happy. We’re starting to tie things together now.”
Miller said he had his goals: “Basically it was don’t get injured,” the 6-foot-2, 270-pounder said. “Work on fundamentals, work on regular football, basic football come together as a team, come together as a family.”
This Marple family is a talented team. The Tigers believe have the size, speed and ability to make a run in the playoffs … and maybe more.
“We don’t just want to make the playoffs,” Tobin said. “We want to make a really big run in the playoffs.”
Weathers broke the Tigers’ message for the rest of the season into four words…”Don’t sleep on us,” he said.