by Tom Utescher
In a day of athletic activities culminating in the 126th annual football game between Germantown Academy and Penn Charter, the PC Quakers clinched the GA/PC Competition Cup last Saturday thanks to a 35-7 triumph on the gridiron at GA’s Carey Stadium.
The cup is awarded to the school that is most successful overall in the 10 athletic events contested between the traditional rivals. In the morning and the early afternoon, the host Patriots won both the boys’ and girls’ cross country races, the girls’ water polo match, and the field hockey game. PC picked up victories in boys’ water polo and soccer, and in girls tennis, and the Quakers had also posted a 6-2 win in the golf match that was played between the schools four days earlier.
With the schools fighting to a 0-0 standoff in soccer, each side had 4.5 Competition Cup points heading into the football game, and there the Quakers claimed the overall prize. PC had not won the cup outright since 2007.
Earlier in the GA pool, the Penn Charter boys water polo squad completed a perfect 8-0 championship season in the Inter-Ac with a 19-10 victory. Germantown Academy countered by winning the girls’ water polo bout, 10-3.
The two cross country races had no impact on the Inter-Ac standings, since the league championships had been held back on October 15. In the girls’ championship race at Belmont Plateau, GA finished second and PC was third, and the two schools traded places in the boys’ race.
GA senior Ben Ritz was the individual league champion, and last Saturday he led a one-two-three sweep to help the Patriots prevail, 27-30. Senior Max Huang-Hobbs and Ben Ritz’s sophomore brother, Sam, took second and third.
The GA girls also won last weekend, 24-31, despite an individual victory by 2012 Pa. Independent Schools champion Catie Skinner, a Penn Charter senior who set a new course record of 19 minutes, 27 seconds on the Patriots’ home circuit. GA freshman Paige Kupsky, who was third at the Indy meet, was the runner-up on Saturday and was followed across the line by junior Alyssa Bunim and freshman Maggie Hallahan.
The official Girls Inter-Ac meeting between the tennis teams from the two schools took place back on October 23, when the Patriots prevailed, 5-2. The Quakers avenged that loss last weekend, pulling out a 4-3 win. In the official league standings, Germantown finished 2-4 and PC was 1-5. While PC’s victory in the rematch had no effect in the league, it helped the Quakers stay in the running for the Competition Cup last weekend. Junior Margaux Losty was named MVP for the winning side.
In the Germantown Academy Hall of Fame announcements made at halftime of the football game, the host school recognized former tennis standout Caroline Stanislawski (’02), who went undefeated throughout her high school career, losing just a single set along the way.
Both the soccer matches for boys and girls were official Inter-Ac contests, as was the field hockey game. In the first GA-PC field hockey encounter this season, host Penn Charter was a 2-0 winner, and a goal by sophomore Avery Shoemaker gave the Quakers the early lead in last weekend’s rematch. A GA 10th-grader, Katie Westrum, tied the game, and her classmate Allie Carrigan then deposited the deciding goal in the Pats’ 2-1 victory.
By a slim margin, Charter still finished ahead of GA in the league, coming in fourth with a record of 5-6-1, with the Patriots fifth, at 5-7.
Haverford School had already clinched the Inter-Ac soccer title on the boys’ side, but last Saturday GA still had a chance to tie Penn Charter for second place with a victory. On the other hand, a win or even a tie would secure the runner-up spot for the Quakers.
Back in mid-October, the teams had tied one another, 2-2, in their first meeting of the 2012 season, and midway through Saturday’s tilt the count was still 0-0. Charter collected the only goal of the day during the second half. Off of a free kick, junior Bradford Jones flicked the ball towards the cage and senior Ted Foley finished the play, earning the game MVP Award for the winners, while fellow upperclassman Jared Whitman was selected for the Patriots.
The 1-0 win gave PC a final record of 6-3-1 in the Inter-Ac, while GA posted a mark of 3-3-4.
Coming into the girls’ game, PC was already just out of GA’s reach in the league standings, arriving with a record of 9-1-1 while the Pats entered the match with an Inter-Ac mark of 7-3-1. GA was just ahead of Charter in the standings when the teams first squared off on October 5, but at that point the PC booters launched their mid-season surge with a 4-1 triumph.
Germantown was much more stingy on defense last weekend, and Penn Charter didn’t give up anything either, with the result being a 0-0 tie. Two seniors, the Quakers’ Emma Ebert and the Patriots’ Natalie Toner, were named the MVP’s.
This was the last game to finish before the football classic, and while the deadlock between the female booters didn’t provide any immediate gratification for fans alongside the field, it kept the schools tied overall in the quest for the Competition Cup, so everything would come down to the gridiron clash.
The Germantown Academy – Penn Charter pigskin series shares the distinction of being the nation’s oldest continuous scholastic football rivalry with a pair of Massachusetts schools, Boston Latin and Boston English. Both of these high school duels began back in 1887.
After a few morning sprinkles, the weather had been partly sunny leading up to the 126th battle between the two Philly teams, but the outlook for the GA footballers began to grow a little cloudy late in the first quarter. As the final minute approached, Quakers sophomore quarterback Patrick McCain hit senior Daryl Worley for a touchdown pass that put the first points on the board. A second quarter interception return for a score by junior Freddie Perri had Charter up 14-0 at the half.
Playing catch-up now, Germantown was forced to turn to an aerial game that did not go particularly well for the Pats. Twice in the third quarter they were unable to cash in on first-and-goal situations, while the visitors assumed a 28-0 lead thanks to a pair of long TD runs by senior Eric Neefe. GA was at least able to break the shutout, finding the end zone with two seconds left in the third round as QB Hayes Nolte hooked up with fellow junior Kyle Donahue on a 46-yard scoring play.
Completing the scoring in the fourth quarter on a goal-line play, Charter senior Mike McGlinchey leapt over his blockers and broke the plane for his team’s fifth TD. Two senior kickers handled the extra points for the teams, Tyler Gottlieb booting all five for the winners, while Bobby Flood made good on his lone opportunity for GA.
Penn Charter underscored its dominance in the longstanding series by raising its record to 82-33-11, while the MVP award, the Joseph Geis Trophy, was shared by the Quakers’ McGlinchey and Neefe.