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Recovered from injury, QB ready to shoulder load for Blackhawk

| Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, 7:56 p.m.
Christopher Horner
Blackhawk quarterback Chandler Kincade. Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review

Chandler Kincade's throwing shoulder hasn't been the same since he injured it last September.

Actually, he says that's a good thing.

“It's better than it has ever been, honestly,” said the Blackhawk quarterback who spent months rehabbing his dislocated shoulder. “If I had to tell you the percentage, it would be 110 because it's never really felt this good.”

Now, the 6-foot-4 junior wants to prove that to everybody. The Pitt recruit has been throwing since early May, eager for his chance to make up for lost time.

“I know there's a lot of questioning about how well I'll come back,” he said. “I'm ready to prove myself. I feel more confident in my shoulder and arm than before.”

With Kincade again healthy and a solid core returning, Blackhawk should be a favorite to make the playoffs. The Cougars fell one win short a year ago and haven't reached the WPIAL playoffs since 2009, when they lost in the Class AAA championship game to Thomas Jefferson.

“I expect us to be a pretty good team if we can all play on the same page,” Kincade said. “I expect us to be a playoff team for sure and be a contender for the championship.”

Kincade has at least three solid targets, including senior wideout Alex Caratelli (6-1), the leading receiver in 2011. Senior Joe Campbell (6-0) and junior Andy Podbielski (6-4, 235) return at tight end.

Just don't expect the Cougars to abandon the run.

Blackhawk has senior tailback Cole Chiappialle, one of three rushers with more than 400 yards last season. The other two graduated, leaving Chiappialle as lead back. He'll run behind Tyler Beatrice, Tom Graham and Nolan Moffett, returning starters who will solidify the interior line.

“I'm OK if we hand the ball off 30 times and throw it three,” Kincade said, “or vice versa, as long as we're winning.”

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