HomePhillyVoice High School Football Top 10: Quakertown Stands on the Edge of History

PhillyVoice High School Football Top 10: Quakertown Stands on the Edge of History

As far as everyone knows — and what Quakertown coach George Banas was told recently — Quakertown hasn’t gone 10-0 in football since 1956.

The Panthers are about to do so this season. They are one of three PIAA District 1 6A teams that are unbeaten in Week 9 along with North Penn and Garnet Valley, all at 8-0.

Garnet Valley is currently ranked number one in the weekly points ranking system, with North Penn at number two and Quakertown at number five.

The Panthers remained undefeated with a balanced offense, led 5-11, 165 pounds for three years starting with first quarterback Will Steich, for three years starting 6-3, and 260 pounds for big offensive tackle/defensive end Freddy Ritter, 5- 9, 170-pound top-end front/back racer Tyler Woodman and a 6-1, 180-pound large wide receiver Zach Vondel.

The last time the Panthers won the Suburban One League was in 2014. The last time Quakertown started 8-0 was in consecutive years, 2014 and 2015. In both years, the Panthers lost in the second round of the PIAA playoffs.

“I was hopeful we could be good this year, and we’ve had a lot of kids coming back,” said Panas, who scored nine returning players in attack and seven in defense. “We had a chance and this off season we thought we could do the running. We knew we got a lot of pieces back and the kids worked hard in the off season.

“Going into the year, I didn’t think we’d start 8-0, considering we have four games extended with Abington, Upper Dublin, Souderton and Nchamini. When you see those four teams in a row, as a real person, going 3-1 would be a good group of Four matches.”

The Panthers swept the four respectable programs for a total of 138-44, including closing.

“Our offensive and defensive lines have done a fantastic job this whole season,” Banas said. “The key is we’re balanced. We have a lot of guns across the board. You can’t put nine guys in the box and say you’re going to stop the run, because we can throw it. If you want to drop four or five defensive backs, we can run.”

“Realistically, it’s a private group and a team effort we have here. These guys put their egos aside and think of the team first.”

Quakertown has 5-3 Bensalem this weekend and 3-5 Truman to finish the season ahead of the playoffs. This is where the Panthers will face the big boys of District 1 in Garnet Valley, North Penn, Coatesville, Downingtown East and Ridley.

Panthers have the firepower and talent to stay with them and play deep into November.

Quakertown has a three-year starting quarterback and an experienced team, which can translate to the Panthers playing meaningful matches in November. However, Panas does not care about that now.

“Looking at things, I deal with it week after week, first with Bensalem and then Truman, avoiding the guessing game about where we will be ranked. [in the district playoffs]It’s going to happen, said Panas, ‘whatever happens. I hope we’re at home.’

“If we stay healthy, I’d love our chances against anyone we play on Friday night. Garnet Valley is a tough game. North Penn is tough out. Some years you see a team and you know we might not make it until halftime. But I see my team and I know these kids.”

They’re committed. They work hard—and they’re talented. We’re ready to get on the field with anyone we see on the road. It’s been 1956 since Quakertown went 10-0, when I think they were. 10-0-1. That’s what I’m told. I’m not thinking about 10-0 now. We have Bensalem this week.”

And maybe even more advanced if the Cheetahs continue to play as they are.

PhillyVoice District Top 10

Week of October 22, 2021

1 – Hall (6-1)

2. St. Joseph Preparatory School (4-2)

3 – Imhotep’s Covenant (6-1)

4 – North Bain (8-0)

5. Malvern Prep (4-2)

6 – St. Augustine Preparatory School (NJ) (6-1)

7. Cedar Creek (NJ) (8-0)

8. Garnet Valley (8-0)

9- Archbishop Wood (5-3)

10. Melville (NJ) (5-1)

Under consideration: Quakertown (8-0), Holy Spirit (NJ) (3-3), Downingtown East (7-1), Neumann-Goretti (6-1), Woodbury (NJ) (7-0), St. Joseph (NJ) (6-2), Ocean City (NJ) (7-0), Ridley (7-1), Coatesville (7-1), Chester (7-1).

10th place at PhillyVoice Southeastern PA

Week of October 22, 2021

1 – Hall (6-1)

2. St. Joseph Preparatory School (4-2)

3 – Imhotep’s Covenant (6-1)

4 – North Bain (8-0)

5. Malvern Prep (4-2)

6 – Garnet Valley (8-0)

7- Archbishop Wood (5-3)

8 – Coatesville (7-1)

9 – Newman – Gorriti (6-1)

10 – Quakertown (8-0)

Under consideration: Downingtown East (7-1), Ridley (7-1), Central Bucks East (6-2), Birkin Valley (6-2), Central Bucks West (6-2), Chester (7-1) , Strath Haven (7-1), Unionville (7-1).

Joseph Santolicetto is an award-winning sports writer based in the Philadelphia area who has been writing for PhillyVoice since its inception in 2015 and is president of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be followed on Twitter here: Tweet embed.