Fox Chapel outran visiting Plum on Friday night, prevailing 42-14 in its regular-season finale.
The playoff-bound Foxes (6-4, 5-3 Allegheny 9) are on a five-game winning streak, and Plum finished the season 3-7, 3-5 Big East.
“We had our ups and downs,” Plum coach Matt Morgan said. “Obviously, we had a lot of injuries this season, so we were limited all year and had to play a lot of young guys and freshmen.”
Plum started with the ball but couldn’t convert a third-and-4 and punted to the Fox Chapel 34. From there, Fox Chapel’s two-headed monster of running back Micah Morris and quarterback Nick Gizzo did the rest, combining for all 68 yards. Gizzo finished it off, going 49 yards for a touchdown.
“I thought we played real well offensively,” Fox Chapel coach Tom Loughran said. “I didn’t think we did a bad job blocking their front all night long: Gizzo, Micah and even Chase Villani did a nice job rushing the football, and our offensive line did a great job controlling their front.”
Plum threw a lot of different formations at the Foxes, rotating in multiple quarterbacks, but couldn’t move the football consistently.
The Mustangs broke the shutout in the second quarter after a 42-yard touchdown run by Gizzo. Plum put together a drive that culminated in Seth Norcutt’s 4-yard diving touchdown grab in the corner of the end zone off Anthony Little’s only pass of the game. That made it 21-7 at the half.
“They gave us a lot of unique formations — nothing we haven’t prepared for — but they put personnel in different spots,” Loughran said. “But once we got regrouped at halftime, I thought we did a much better job adjusting to it.”
They did, as Fox Chapel scored 21 straight points in the third quarter, mostly on the back of Morris. He ran for 54 yards, stiff-arming his way to the 15, then punched it in from the 4 two plays later. He did the same thing after a three-and-out by Plum, running six times and scoring on a 1-yard run.
The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Morris, who has a scholarship offer from Brown, finished with 208 yards rushing on 22 attempts. Gizzo had 150 yards rushing and two touchdowns along with 44 yards passing and another touchdown.
“We tried to get a little more creative at the end of the season, just trying to give those kids a boost and something else to look that they haven’t seen all year,” Morgan said. “They fought hard, and that’s all we can ask for. Hopefully we can build on it and progress into next season.”