Written by: Benjamin Goldstein

School may not be in session quite yet, but high school football kicks off Friday night. And for the Pennsbury Falcons, they have a Suburban One League National championship to defend in 2023.

And it all gets started Friday night as they face the Coatesville Red Raiders at Harry S. Truman High School.

The Falcons plan to swarm back in Falcon Field on their own campus, which is currently under construction, on September 14 against Central Bucks West.

The last time these two faced off was actually opening night 2022, where Pennsbury lost their seventeenth consecutive game, 28-6 at Coatesville. After that game, the Falcons did not lose another game until the postseason.

This will not be an easy opener for Pennsbury by any means. Here are a few storylines for the opener:

Making up for graduates

Pennsbury is projected to win their second-straight SOL National championship this season, but they still need some time to fill in for some star graduates who earned their diplomas last season.

Their biggest challenge will be working around the loss of their star running back Galamama Mulbah. He rushed for nearly 2,000 yards last season, including 364 on an astonishing 48 carries when the Falcons ended a long drought against North Penn. Mulbah will play football up at Lackawanna College. As luck would have it for the Falcons, they do have a very talented runner returning in senior Nathan Beighley. Beighley will line up at either behind center at quarterback or in the backfield. He runs the ball with a lot of speed capable of taking it the distance. You can also catch Beighley as a defensive back this season, as he will be a two-way starter again this season.

Pennsbury’s running game will also be strengthened by the return of offensive lineman junior Rocco May and senior Chris Rausch, including tight end senior C.J. Wisor. Five defensive starters return to a defense that swarms to the ball especially well.

Not the easiest opener

The 2022 Coatesville High School football season was a strange one in which it had a roller coaster of ups and downs, the 2023 Red Raider team comes into the new season with expectations to retain their title as one of the best teams in District 1.

“Last season was just a tough one overall,” Coatesville coach Matt Ortega said to dailylocal.com. “The obstacles that we had to overcome as a team took its toll on us by the end, but hats off to that group. I feel that no one knows how resilient and mentally tough they were just to get to that point. It’s definitely a motivating point heading into this year. We definitely have high expectations with this team.”

Coatesville this season is big, fast, and talented. They will be led by their defense, which should be one of the top defenses in the area.

“It was a good group last year and our defense has the potential to be one of the best we ever had here,” said Ortega. “So, that’s the expectations we have for our defense.”

They will be directed upfront by senior linemen Matt Luton and Francisco Hall. Luton’s quickness can deliver opposing offensive linemen and quarterbacks shocks.

The Red Raiders are starting a new quarterback, Matt Ortega Jr. Yes, he is the coach’s son. He is also the brother of a skilled player in former Coatesville QB Ricky Ortega. The sophomore takes over for the graduated Harrison Susi. He might not have the experience, but with an accomplished father and brother, he definitely has the ancestry to be successful.

“It’s kind of just developed the last couple of years when he played Little League, we weren’t sure of what position he was going to play,” said coach Ortega. “The last two years he’s developed into a quarterback. He’s definitely different than anybody we’ve had since I’ve been here, so I hope he’s able to take his skill set and allow us to be able to get back to throwing the football a bit more.”

Pennsbury Falcons Football Preview Show

To get all the information on these 2023 Falcons, watch this season’s WBCB’s Pennsbury Falcons Football Preview Show, recorded live from Puss N’ Boots Fairless Hills in Bucks County Pennsylvania.


General game information

  • Kick-off: 7:00 pm ET
  • At: Harry S. Truman High School
  • Tickets are $5, CASH ONLY
  • Concession stand will be set up, CASH ONLY
  • Carpooling to Truman for the football game is highly encouraged due to limited parking. The pavement is currently milled and scraped in preparation for new asphalt. If you plan on attending, please plan accordingly.
  • Student section theme: Tropical
  • Watch: wbcb1490.com or WBCB’s YouTube