Bethel Park beats Canon-McMillan to clinch title
Bethel Park's Lyle Marsh scrambles for a few extra yards in the first half against Canon-McMillan last night.
Canon-McMillan's Chad Hagan looks for running room around Bethel Park's Lyle Marsh in the first half last night.
Bethel Park's John Schademan catches a touchdown pass as he's defended by Canon-McMillan's Steve Roach in the first half last night.
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It took John Schademan less than four minutes to give Bethel Park something they haven't had in 10 years.
Schademan, a receiver, scored three touchdowns in a span of three minutes and 49 seconds last night, and his outburst vaulted Bethel Park to a 28-10 victory against Canon-McMillan in a game that decided the top spot in the Great Southern Conference.
With the win, Bethel Park clinched first place in the conference. It has been 10 years since the Black Hawks have been able to call themselves conference champs.
Bethel Park is 8-0 overall and 4-0 in the conference. With a win next week against Baldwin, the Black Hawks will finish the regular season with an undefeated record for the first time since 1964 and the fourth time in school history. The other years were 1943 and 1951, although the '43 team had a tie.
Schademan, a 5-foot-11, 185-pound senior, shaped this team's place in history.
"If Johnny Schademan isn't one of the best players around, then I shouldn't be coaching," said Bethel Park coach Jeff Metheny. "He makes my job so easy that it's unbelievable."
For the first quarter-and-a-half, you barely heard a peep from Bethel Park's offense. Then, the game turned into a case of Johnny on the spot.
With Canon-McMillan leading, 3-0, Schademan scored on an 8-yard fade pass from Erik Olson with 5:05 left in the first half.
Canon-McMillan went three-and-out on its next possession, and Bethel Park took over at its own 40. Three plays later, Canon-McMillan's defense bit on a pitch to halfback Lyle Marsh. But Marsh stopped and threw a pass to a wide-open Schademan for a 53-yard touchdown with 1:44 left in the half.
Canon-McMillan fumbled the ball away two plays after the ensuing kickoff. Bethel Park took over at the Big Macs' 31, and Olson hit Schademan with a scoring pass on the first play with 1:16 left in the half.
That made three touchdowns for Schademan in five Bethel Park plays.
"Schademan is the difference in every game," Metheny said. "He's a guy who can change a game. He's a special kid."
The three touchdowns gave Schademan 10 for the year, and he also had a nice performance at defensive back. It was a nice way for Schademan to celebrate Senior Night.
"You definitely want to play big on big nights like this," Schademan said.
The loss dropped Canon-McMillan to 6-3 overall and 3-1 in the conference.
"I thought we were in great shape and played extremely well in the first quarter," said Canon-McMillan coach Guy Montecalvo. "We played maybe even better than them in the first quarter. [The four-minute span] was the football game, in essence."
Canon-McMillan came back after Schademan's third touchdown and moved quickly downfield for an apparent touchdown when quarterback Steve Roach ran 16 yards into the end zone. But a holding penalty negated the score and pushed the Big Macs back to the 30. A Roach pass fell incomplete on the final play of the half.
In the third quarter, Canon-McMillan's Mike Hull fumbled away a Bethel Park punt at his own 11. Marsh scored three plays later on a 3-yard run.
The final score of the game came with 7:58 left in the third quarter when Canon-McMillan's Matt Parisse caught a 75-yard touchdown pass from Roach.
Bethel Park's defense was outstanding, limiting Canon-McMillan to 211 yards, including 91 on the ground. Hull, who came in with 717 yards rushing, was held to 41 yards on 15 carries, his lowest yardage total this season.
"I think we're a good team, so I know they are a good team," Montecalvo said of Bethel Park.
Metheny was also the coach when Bethel Park won the conference title 10 years ago.
"We hear it all the time how we haven't won a conference in 10 years. We hear it from Coach Metheny," Schademan said with a laugh.
"They're not too easy to get, especially with the kind of coaches we go against," Metheny said. "You have a lot of Hall of Fame coaches. The ball has to bounce right."
And into John Schademan's hands.
First Published October 18, 2008 12:02 am