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The Wingspan

The official student news site of Norristown Area High School

The Wingspan

The official student news site of Norristown Area High School

The Wingspan

Penalties Sabotage Eagles’ Flight in ‘Battle of the Bridge’

Evan Barlett
Norristown lines up against Upper Merion in the annual Battle of the Bridge.

The Norristown Eagles battled the Upper Merion Vikings for the 2023 annual “Battle of the Bridge” game last Thursday, Aug. 31 on the Vikings’ turf. While the Eagles started strong, the team still flew short, falling 20-13 due to a series of late-game penalties. 

“I felt pretty good going into the game, but I thought the outcome was going to be different,” said strong safety Rashon Giddens. 

With 8:04 left in the first quarter, the Vikings struck first with a 10-yard touchdown reception to Zahaid Edwards from QB Jackson Solley. With a successful PAT attempt from Cyrus Palladino, the Vikings led 7-0. 

“It definitely lit something in us up,” said center Jahir Ramirez.  It felt like the Eagles were destined to fly with that motivation, as QB Brendan Farrell threw an 80-yard dime to wide receiver Jayden Byrd.

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 “It was an amazing feeling,” Byrd said of the Eagle’s first touchdown. 

After an effortless kick from Norristown Kicker Brett Murphy, the game was brought to a tie. 

Norristown’s defense fought hard during the next drive. Unfortunately running back Isaiah Robinson of the Vikings scored a 2-yard rushing touchdown. However, the following PAT attempt was then blocked by the Eagle’s special teams unit. 

Overall, Town’s defense served as a brick wall for Upper Merion’s offensive front. The defensive highlight of the night was Giddens’ interception to reverse the sticks. 

On Norristown’s offensive side of the ball, running back Meyon Ferell and wide receiver Byrd both showcased outstanding performances. Ferrell rushed 19 times, compiling 81 yards. Byrd had himself a successful game, as he caught 3 passes for 107 yards, also compiling 2 touchdowns to add to the scoreboard. 

Farrell was electric on the field, throwing for 119 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception. Both teams’ defenses battled in the 3rd and 4th quarters, but the Eagles were able to tug on the Vikings’ beards, striking back with a 33-yard receiving touchdown by Jayden Byrd himself. This became the main highlight of the game, as the crowd roared with excitement. This sparked a new energy from the players and fans, but it still wasn’t enough to conquer the Vikings.  

The biggest component of the Eagle´s loss was the numerous penalties late in the game. The large number of offside calls quickly plummeted the Eagle’s chances of crossing the bridge on top.

All in all, it was a highly competitive game throughout. The energy was unmatched from both sides, on and off the field. Tonight, the Eagles will take flight against a similarly matched Pottsgrove team, at their field at 7 PM. 


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About the Contributors
Evan Bartlett
Evan Bartlett, Staff Writer
Evan is a sophomore here at NAHS and is in his second year in the Wingspan. He is a person who loves every single sport, but baseball is his favorite by far. He also loves to play frisbee golf when he has the time because he is usually busy doing something. Evan also enjoys hiking, especially in upstate New York, New Hampshire, and pretty much anywhere! He currently writes sports and music articles for the Wingspan. He finds writing and reading actually really enjoyable, especially sports articles about his favorite teams (The Boston Red Sox, The Philadelphia Phillies) and players.
Brandon Purdy
Brandon Purdy, Staff Writer
Brandon Purdy is a sophomore at NAHS. He can be seen playing the drums and guitar, running track and XC, or listening to music. He intends to write music and sports articles for the Wingspan this upcoming school year. His favorite color is purple, and his favorite movie is Cars 1.

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