The Pfafftown Packers Pee Wees turned it up a notch in the opening round of the Division I Piedmont Youth Football and Cheer League playoffs last week. The Packers (8-0) relied on their crunching ground game to set the tone in a 32-12 victory over the South Fork Panthers.
The Packers advance to play the Tiny Rams or Tiny Indians in the PYFCL Pee Wee championship game this weekend. The league championship contests for Division I and Division II are set for Saturday and Sunday at Glenn High School. First-round playoff scores were not available at press time. To see complete playoff results for both divisions, along with scores from the Tiny Mites and Mighty Mites bowl games, visit the league web site at http://pyfcl.com. The site will also have championship game pairings for both divisions posted.
“What it all came down to was the will to win,” said Pfafftown Coach Gary Warren (also known as Coach June). “We’re just one game away from accomplishing our goal to win the championship. We have a close-knit coaching staff that stresses the fundamentals. You win when you control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the football. Our defensive pursuit was relentless and we didn’t miss tackles.”
Aundrey Walker, Khalil Baker and Ryan Cherry provided the offensive spark for the Packers. Walker ran 46 yards for a touchdown to open the scoring for the Packers with nine minutes remaining in the first quarter.
South Fork answered with a scoring drive of its own, fueled mostly by running back Joman Brown. Christian Hicks capped the Panthers drive with a 27-yard touchdown run to make it 8-6 Packers.
From that point on, Pfafftown began to pull away. Cherry scored on a 19-yard run and Baker added to the lead on a 14-yard touchdown reception. The Packers led 20-6 at halftime.
Cherry scored his second touchdown of the game on a 42-yard run late in the third quarter. Walker closed out the scoring for Packers when he broke loose on a 40-yard touchdown run in the waning seconds of the game.
The Panthers (5-3) got on the board again early in the fourth quarter. Ty Johnson kept the drive going when he connected with Devin Ingram on a fourth-down pass to put the ball inside the Packers’ 10-yard line. Three plays later, Brown bulldozed his way into the end zone from two yards out.
“There was a lot of reaching when we were on defense, and they ran through a lot of tackles,” said Panthers Coach Richard Daniels, whose team started the season at 0-2 but finished strong with five straight wins. “Their backs run hard. If you don’t wrap them up, you’re going to have a long day. But I’m proud of this team. Those two losses at the start of the season really helped us to find our character.”