WV trounces EJ

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WILLIAMSTOWN - An early-game play call came as a pleasant surprise for Williams Valley's Tim Schorr.

The rest of the night for the Vikings went exactly as expected.

Cole Barnhardt ran for two scores and the Williams Valley defense contributed two more touchdowns as the Vikings clinched the Tri-Valley League championship with a 41-0 thumping of East Juniata on November 2 at Gerry Stauffenberg Field at Viking Stadium.

On their first offensive possession, the Vikings had a first-and-10 at the East Juniata 18-yard line five plays into the drive.

Schorr, Williams Valley's tight end, was shocked when the play was designed to go him. It was executed to perfection as a receiver cleared out room and quarterback Stephen Sedesse hit Schorr in stride down the right sideline for the score.

"It didn't expect to get the pass," Schorr said. "When they called that it just felt great. I am normally the tight end, I just don't get the ball. I am usually there to block."

It was just the start of what turned into a quick night of work for the first-team offense.

Barnhardt, who finished with 54 yards rushing on six carries, scored on runs of 5 and 22 yards in the first quarter. Jake Mika recovered a fumble in the end zone on a Tigers' reverse attempt as Williams Valley (10-0, 9-0 TVL) jumped out to a 27-0 lead after the first quarter.

Sedesse added a 5-yard scoring run early in the second, while Codie Miller returned an interception 25 yards for a touchdown midway in the quarter to make it 41-0 after Cody Miller's fifth point-after-kick of the night.

That was it for the Vikings' first-team offense, which didn't take the field in the second half.

Not only did Williams Valley earn the league title, it finished with an undefeated regular season for the first time since 2008. The Vikings also wrapped up the No. 1 seed for the upcoming District 11 Class A playoffs and will host a semifinal contest this Saturday.

"Most of the season we were facing challenges like Tri-Valley and Line Mountain, good games and great teams," said Owen Daniel, who had 48 yards receiving and ran for 42 more. "We overcame those challenges and got the championship. It was what we were looking for all season. Now it is districts."

The Vikings reached the district title game in 2008, losing to Schuylkill Haven 43-7. Williams Valley hopes the return trip ends in a different result, of course.

For now, the Vikings can enjoy the conference title.

"Hard work, playing as a family," Schorr said on the keys up to this point. "Our coaches have definitely pushed us."

As they were supposed to do, Williams Valley didn't give the Tigers (1-9, 0-9) - whose only victory of the season came in their season opener against Bucktail - much of a chance, putting the game away early.

Defensively, the Vikings turned in another stout performance, holding East Juniata to 28 yards of total offense while forcing seven turnovers.

The closest the Tigers came to scoring was late in the first half, set up by a 51-yard kickoff return. East Juniata reached the Williams Valley 9 before the drive stalled, and Dalton Rowe's 27-yard field goal attempt came up short.

Williams Valley has allowed just 59 points all season and has been especially tough to score upon at home, giving up 12 points with five shutouts.

A big motivation for the shutouts is Gerry Stauffenberg, the long-time Vikings head coach, who passed away recently.

"Everything is for him at home," Daniel said. "It is something we just like to do. It is something we are proud of."

With the win, the football team became the second Williams Valley fall sports program to finish the regular season undefeated, joining the boys' soccer squad.

"It's awesome," Daniel said. "We all support each other in the fullest and helps us win in each sport."

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