Honesdale’s varsity football program has suffered through some lean years in the past decade. However, over the course of the past few seasons, the future appears to be getting brighter and brighter.
On Wednesday night in the Electric City, evidence of that progress was on display for more than 7,000 fans.
Regan Grossman, Nick Hessling and Jamie Blockberger sprinted onto the Memorial Stadium turf to represent the County in the 2012 Scranton Lions Club Dream Game. They carried with them the focus, dedication and heart for which Hornet football players have become known.
“I definitely think things are moving in the right direction,” Honesdale Coach Jim Ludwig told TWI Sports on the eve of the 78th Dream Game. “We’ve been hearing a ton of nice things from the coaches about our kids and we really appreciate it.”
Hall of Famer Frank Pazzaglia and his Mid Valley staff mentored the County squad...and they found plenty of playing time for the Honesdale trio. Sadly for a big contingent of local fans who made the trip on this muggy August night, nothing the three Hornets could deliver a win.
The County hung close through the first half, but then surrendered two late touchdowns and the City cruised to a 41-20 victory.
With this latest win, the City edged ahead in the all time series by a margin of 38-26-4.
On the Turf
Grossman, Hessling and Blockberger were a near-constant presence on the turf all night.
Regan saw action offensively as a wide receiver, defensively at cornerback and on special teams at long-snapper.
The highlight of Grossman’s evening came in the waning seconds of the first half when he caught two passes for 13 yards in a County drive ended with a touchdown.
Hessling was an intimidating presence at inside linebacker. Nick provided his usual run-stuffing hits up front, but contributed his biggest play of the game against the pass.
The City’s high-octane offense was threatening once more late in the second half when Hessling stepped up in huge way. Nick dropped back in coverage at his own 6-yardline and quickly turned the tide, picking off a pass in the endzone.
Blockberger was his usual high-energy self from the opening kick-off to the final gun. Jamie gave the City fits from his spot at defensive tackle. He was also all over the field on special teams, playing in both kick coverage and return squads.
Despite all their efforts, the Red & Black weren’t able to slow down a familiar face... Paupack’s Pat Ingulli.
The lightning-quick Buckhorn tailback broke loose on an electrifying 43-yard TD scamper late in the second quarter. Ingulli would only carry the ball seven times in the game, but he made the best of those tries.
The Wilkes University recruit finished up with 56 yards and three touchdowns.
“It’s so much fun...such an honor to play in the Dream Game,” he said just moments before the second half kicked-off. “I just love it!”
Score by Quarters...
County 10 7 0 3 - 20
City 13 14 0 14 - 41