The Coudersport Falcons football team struggled to get things going on offense and were outgained 259 yards to 73 Friday night as they fell to the Smethport Hubbers in a defensive brawl, 14-0.
It’s just the second time Coudersport has been shutout since 2015, a 35-0 loss at Curwensville.
The first time since then was a 28-0 loss to Farrell in the state playoffs in 2019, mainly due to a fumble at the one yard line that kept the Falcons off the board, and then Friday night.
The Falcons gained momentum right away, picking off Smethport quarterback Noah Lent at the 45-yard line, but were unable to capitalize and were forced to punt. From there on in the quarter, it was a series of three-and-outs and punts from both sides.
It marked the second week in a row where Coudersport found themselves in a scoreless game after the first 12 minutes, and the first time this season that Smethport did not score in the opening quarter.
The Falcons started to move the ball in the second quarter, but failed to convert a fourth down pass at the 40 yard line which turned the ball back over to the Hubbers.
Smethport got their first score of the game when Braedon Johnson escaped down the sideline for a 40-yard touchdown, and Noah Lent’s two-point pass was incomplete.
On the Falcons ensuing possession, quarterback Hayden Keck was called for intentional grounding in the endzone which resulted in a Smethport safety, which made up for the missed conversion.
Smethport moved the ball deep into Coudersport territory late in the half, but the Falcons’ defense was able to hold them off for a 8-0 halftime score.
Noah Lent was injured on a tackle in the third quarter and limped off, and his status for this Friday night’s game is unknown. The Hubbers turned up the intensity for their star quarterback, and replaced him with Braedon Johnson. The Falcons were pinned up against their own endzone once again and were forced to punt at the one yard line, giving the Hubbers the ball back in plus territory already. Braedon Johnson scored his second touchdown of the game on a 13-run to put the game on ice.
Coudersport managed to move the ball into Smethport territory in an attempt to cut the lead in half with three minutes to play, but were turned away once again when a fourth down pass was incomplete. Hayden Keck did complete a pass to Dalton Keglovits for a touchdown on the drive, but it was called back for a holding penalty.
In general stats, Hayden Keck was bottled up by the Hubber defense going 6/22 passing for 19 yards and ran 12 times for two yards.
Brandt Kightlinger ran 10 times for 43 yards.
Smethport’s Noah Lent put up his lowest numbers so far this season before getting hurt, going 0/5 passing and rushing for 83 yards on 11 carries.
Runningback Braedon Johnson ran 24 times for 157 yards and both touchdowns while completing a pass for 11 yards.
Smethport remains undefeated at 5-0 and will host Union/A-C Valley this Friday night in a semifinal playoff game.
The Hubbers and the Falcon Knights met up in the playoffs in 2018 where Smethport shut them out at home, 28-0.
Coudersport falls to 4-1 and will travel to New Bethlehem to battle Redbank Valley this Saturday afternoon.
In 2019, the Falcons destroyed the Bulldogs in the other battle of the unbeatens game at CARP, 56-0, and used a 36-point fourth quarter to defeat them again in the District 9 Championship, 42-13 at Dubois’ E.J. Mansell Stadium.
Coudersport rides a three-game winning streak against Redbank dating back to 2018 in the playoffs, 52-7, the last time the Falcons traveled there.
Kickoff is set for 4 p.m.
The winners of the two games will face each other in the District 9 Championship either Oct. 30 or 31 at Frank Varischetti Field in Brockway.