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Triumphant Travels: Redbank Valley Returns Home Happy Following a 27-6 Win at Smethport

SHEFFIELD, Pa. (EYT/D9) — Long bus trip. Long punt return.

Happy trip home for the Redbank Valley football team.

Ashton Kahle returned a punt 74 yards for a touchdown after Smethport’s opening drive stalled to put the Bulldogs up 8-0, and Redbank Valley pulled away in the second half for a 27-6 victory in a showdown Friday night of two of the top teams in District 9, Class A.

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.

“Going up 8-0 before we even touched the ball was big,” said Redbank Valley coach Blane Gold. “On the road, to start fast like that, was huge from that standpoint.

“We struggled offensively. Defensively they did a great job counteracting some of the stuff we were trying to do.”

But Redbank Valley’s defense was stifling, too, holding Smethport quarterback Noah Lent and the Hubbers’ offense in check most of the night. The unit also forced three second-half turnovers.

(Senior running back Ray Schreckengost scored a pair of touchdowns in the win over Smethport/Photo by Madison McFarland)

Smethport (5-1) did drive for a touchdown near the end of the first half to cut the Redbank Valley lead to 8-6 at the break.

But Ray Schreckengost scored a rushing touchdown in the third quarter to give Redbank Valley (5-1) a 15-6 lead and a little cushion.

“From start to finish it was a total team effort,” Gold said. “Smethport is the type of team that it’s an advantage if you get up early. If you can get up two scores, it kind of takes them out of what they do well.”

And that’s their power spread offense with Lent at the helm.

Lent came into the game with 16 rushing touchdowns and 13 passing TDs. Smethport hadn’t scored fewer than 35 points this season until Friday.

“We made some adjustments (at halftime) and the kids played,” Gold said. “We can make all the adjustments we want, but the kids need to still play. They played their hearts out.”

Senior wide receiver Chris Marshall, still recovering from an ankle injury suffered several weeks ago, played sparingly, but made a huge impact. He caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from Bryson Bain and also made a huge catch on third down to keep a drive alive.

“He played about four plays tonight,” Gold said. “He’s still healing up.”

Scheckengost sealed the win with his second TD run of the game.

Redbank Valley was able to get its ground game going in the second half, eating clock and salting away the victory.

And making the arduous trip home a joyous one.

“Any time you get on a bus for two hours, enter that environment against a team that has not lost yet, I’m going to take a win on the road like that any day of the week,” Gold said.

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.

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