Thomas Jefferson opens on the road against conference foe Ringgold
By Ray Fisher
Published: Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Thomas Jefferson's varsity football team opens its season-long quest for championships on the road.
The Jaguars travel to Ringgold for a 7:30 p.m. game Friday in their Class AAA Big Nine Conference opener.
“Ringgold looks really good. They have excellent athletes with speed and quickness, and they really throw the ball well,” Bill Cherpak, Thomas Jefferson's head coach, said. “We have to limit our mistakes and play sound defense.”
Ringgold has a young team this year, and will be leaning on a trio of seniors in Nick Trocano, a guard/defensive end; Matt Kirby, a fullback/linebacker; and Dayshore Majors, a multi-purpose athlete on offense and defense.
Kirby was an honorable mention all-conference selection on defense in 2012.
Nico Law, a junior quarterback who passed for more than 600 yards last season, also is a returning starter for the Rams, who ended up 4-6 overall in 2012.
“You are always optimistic coming into each year,” Matt Humbert, Ringgold's head coach, said. “The nice thing is that we will get to see what a playoff-caliber team looks like right away. You always know where you stand after you play TJ.”
Thomas Jefferson rolled past the Rams by a 41-14 margin last season.
With a host of returning starters back from last year's squad — which advanced to the WPIAL semifinals and finished 11-1 overall — Thomas Jefferson is anticipating a banner campaign in 2013.
“I think this team has a chance to be really good, really special,” Cherpak said.
Thomas Jefferson has several returning all-conference players on defense in senior linebackers Chase Winovich and Austin Boyd, senior lineman Matt Nagy, junior lineman Jake Guinn, and senior defensive back Dalton Dietrich.
The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Winovich was a Tribune-Review high school preseason football all-star selection at the linebacker position.
Offensively, Cole Costy, a 6-2, 265-pound senior lineman, is the lone returning all-conference player for the Jaguars.
Thomas Jefferson traveled to Peters Township for its second preseason scrimmage last week.
“We were a little sloppy,” Cherpak said. “We need a good week of practice.”
Ray Fisher is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-388-5820 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic captures 1st PIAA championship in OT thriller
- PIAA postpones Saturday’s championship games
- Central Catholic prepares for St. Joseph’s physical, skilled offense
- South Fayette hopes for better result than 2010 PIAA Class AA final
- Gateway football to join AAA ranks
- Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic dominates Clarion in PIAA semifinals
- Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic sees a little of itself in Old Forge
- Southmoreland football season was filled with peaks, valleys
- Knoch two-way lineman anticipates more offers from Division I schools
- Hathaway provides stability for Slippery Rock High School
- South Fayette overwhelms Karns City to reach state semifinals