HUNTINGDON — The Philipsburg-Osceola football earned its second straight season-opening win with a 35-20 victory over Huntingdon on Friday night.
The Mounties also defeated West Branch last season in Week 1.
Philipsburg-Osceola fell behind early, mainly due to some offensive miscues. The Mounties had a fumble and an interception on their first two possessions.
The Bearcats capitalized on the interception, taking it to the Mountie 25 before ending the drive with a 5-yard touchdown pass from Daren Harman to Tyson Cook. The PAT failed, giving Huntingdon a 6-0 lead, which it held until the second quarter.
The Mounties finally got on the board in the second quarter thanks to the run game. Kaleb Stamm pounded the middle along with Hunter Weitoish.
Stamm punched in a touchdown with 11:18 on the clock. Will Rishel's PAT was good, giving the Mounties a 7-6 advantage.
It was a lead they never relinquished, snapping an eight-year losing streak against the Bearcats.
"The team went out and played their hearts out tonight," said P-O head coach Jeff Vroman. "I think we wore them down and just continued to push hard. We kept on an even keel after we got going and got over the early mistakes. I am proud of the emotion that the guys played with tonight."
After the Mounties' Aaron Depto picked off a Harman pass and returned it for the score, Rishel hit his second PAT of the night to give the visitors a 14-6 lead.
Stamm widened the lead to 21-6 after busting off a 16-yard run for the score. Rishel's third PAT of the night was good.
Huntingdon scored just before the half on a Brayden Runk 5-yard run. The Bearcats missed the 2-point conversion, giving the Mounties a 21-12 lead at the half.
Both teams had long clock-eating drives in the third quarter, but failed to find the end zone.
The Mounties got close, however, finishing off their possession in the fourth with a 21-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Whitehead to Depto. Rishel added the PAT to make it 28-12.
Philipsburg-Osceola added to its lead on its next possession as Weitoish took in a 20-yard score. Rishel finished the night 5-for-5 with point afters to give the Mounties a 35-12 advantage.
Huntingdon answered with an 80-yard kickoff return by Alec Cooper. Harman hit Cooper for the conversion to cut the lead to 35-20 with 2:55 on the clock.
But neither team was able to come up with another score, setting the final at 35-20.
"We must do a better job at making something happen when we get turnovers," said Bearcat head coach Shane Thomas. "The team played very hard and we left them gain momentum and they rode the wave of the run game that they established in the second quarter."
It was the Mounties first win over Huntingdon since 2011, when they defeated the Bearcats 47-14.
Stamm finished the night with 156 yards rushing, while Weitoish added 133.
GAME NOTES: First Downs PO 20, Hunt 6; Passing Yards PO 21, Hunt 81; Rushing PO 362, Hunt 56.
Stamm 156 yards rushing, Weitosh 133 yards rushing; Baney 40 yards rushing. Receiving Cook 37-yards, Depto 21-yards. Passing Harman 11 of 27 for 81 yards with two touchdowns and Whitehead was 1 of four for 21 yards with one touchdown.