WEST GOSHEN - Jon Jon Roberts only needed a few words when the possibility was brought up that he would be a perfect fit for a Chip Kelly offense, which runs similar to the no-huddle attack West Chester East head coach Dan Ellis uses on Friday nights.
"That's pretty awesome, actually,' Roberts said with a huge smile on his face. "(Coach Ellis) has the best offense I've ever played in. It's wide open. I love it.'
Roberts continued his superb season with another huge night under center. The sophomore completed 24-of-31 passes for 254 yards and two touchdowns as the Vikings defeated Sun Valley, 38-7, in a nonleague game at Harold I. Zimmerman Stadium on Friday night.
Roberts was in the groove from the first play on, easily connecting on shovel passes and bubble screens that wore down the Vanguards defense in a first half which the Vikings (5-5 overall) scored 35 points. The sophomore had just one goal in mind from the moment he arrived on the field.
"This was a big game as we had a chance to clinch our first winning season since 2006,' Roberts said, whose Vikings play Chichester next Friday night in their regular season finale. "It was senior night and I wanted to send these seniors off right. This group has really started to turn this program around.'
Ellis wanted his team to get off to a fast start and the Vikings responded to his message. West Chester East scored on three of its first four possessions to take a 21-0 lead after a quarter of play.
"We wanted to dictate the pace of play early and it was very effective,' Ellis said. "It fit into our style of play and with limited numbers on the other side; it benefitted us playing that up tempo style.'
Dan Genthert scored the Vikings' first two touchdowns of 1 and 7 yards. The senior had a night to remember in his final game on the home turf, finishing with 132 total yards (53 rushing, 79 receiving).
Genthert had 125 of those yards in the first half and took advantage of some holes in the Sun Valley defense.
"I saw the defense huffing and puffing which created huge holes of running room,' Genthert said. "Knew Jon Jon was going to make the right decision, get me the ball, so I could run through the seams and pick them away.'
Genthert and Roberts helped put the game out of reach for Sun Valley in the final two minutes before the half. The senior ran for 43 yards on a screen from Roberts, which set up a 10-yard touchdown pass to Nick Corialos on the following play to give the Vikings a 28-0 lead.
After the defense forced a three-and-out, Roberts ran the no-huddle offense to perfection in finding Rob Ritrovato on a 7-yard shovel pass to make it 35-0 at the half.
With the mercy rule in effect, the Vanguards need to salvage some pride in the second half. Ryan Riddle was the answer.
Riddle burst through the defense for a 72-yard score midway through the fourth quarter. Alexa Evans, one of two female kickers on the Vanguards, hit the extra point to make it 38-7.
Riddle led Sun Valley with 70 yards rushing on the night. Kijana Gordon had nine carries for 49 yards before leaving the game with an ankle injury in the second quarter.
Injuries have taken toll on the undermanned Vanguards (2-8), but head coach Jim Grugan saw some positives to build upon with his team heading into the Thanksgiving matchup with Chichester to close the season.
"Going forward, we're in good shape and guys are starting to get healthy,' Grugan said. "We keep playing hard and our JV guys are getting experience, so we're getting better in that regard.'
Through 10 games, Roberts has thrown for 2,459 yards, 19 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He also finished with nine carries for 37 yards and a touchdown on the night, giving him 664 on the ground with seven scores.
Genthert sees a bright future over the next two years for his teammate.
"The sky's the ceiling with Jon Jon,' Genthert said. "He's a great player and has a really good junior class with him next year. So hopefully we see more winning seasons coming.'
Ellis was glad to see Genthert and his senior classmates walk off the field as winners after starting with them three years ago.
"They've been at the foundation of rebuilding this (program),' Ellis said. "Being on the cusp of a winning season, which has to do with all the hard work in the weight room and practice to get us where we are now.'
West Chester East 38, Sun Valley 7
Sun Valley 0 0 0 7 -- 7
West Chester East 21 14 0 3 -- 38
WCE: Genthert 1 run (Sulpizio kick)
WCE: Genthert 7 run (Sulpizio kick)
WCE: Roberts 6 run (Sulpizio kick)
WCE: N. Corialos 10 pass from Roberts (Sulpizio kick)
WCE: Ritrovato 10 pass from Roberts (Sulpizio kick)
WCE: Baldyga 45 FG
SV: Riddle 72 run (Evans kick)
SV W.C. EASTFirst downs 5 22
Yards rushing 116 120
Yards passing 39 254
Total yards 155 374
Passing 2-6-2 24-31-1
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 4-2
Penalties 2-20 6-50
Punts-Avg. 3-25.0 1-34
RUSHING - Sun Valley: Riddle 3-70, TD; Gordon 9-49; Williams 8-6; Mancini 8-(-9). W.C. East: Genthert 9-53, 2 TD; Roberts 9-37, TD; Borum 2-24; Sheehan 1-7, Jarmon 1-3; Ridgeway 4-(-2); Rudiger 1-(-2).
PASSING - Sun Valley: Mancini 2-6, 39 yds, 2 INT. W.C. East: Roberts 24-31, 254 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT.
RECEIVING - Sun Valley: Villano 1-20; Riddle 1-19. W.C. East: A. Corialos 6-67; Genthert 4-79; Sheehan 3-22; Bond 3-16; Borum 3-14; N. Corialos 2-20, TD; Rudiger 1-26; Ritrovato 1-10, TD.
SACKS - Sun Valley: Jones. W.C. East: Murphy 2.5, Ritrovato 2, Scott 1.5.
INTERCEPTIONS - Sun Valley: Williams. W.C. East: Anderson, Horan.