Central Catholic's 'road warriors' settle in at Highmark
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Befitting its Viking mascot, Central Catholic has traveled great distances in search of a football home.
That journey might end.
“We may finally be able to dock our ships,” Central Catholic athletic director Chuck Crummie said.
The No. 1-ranked football team in Class AAAA will make Highmark Stadium its home for Friday night's matchup against Fox Chapel, the first of three games scheduled this season at the South Side soccer venue.
Should all go as planned, the Vikings might stay at the stadium for years, but that's not yet certain.
The Vikings practiced at Highmark Stadium on Thursday afternoon, the team's first on the artificial turf. Built along the Monongahela River near Station Square, the stadium allows an up-close look at the city.
With that location, Crummie believes this week's game could draw several thousand to the 4,000-seat stadium. For matchups with Seneca Valley (Sept. 27) and North Allegheny (Oct. 11), he hopes for even more.
“There's a lot of anticipation and excitement,” Crummie said, “and there's a little trepidation having not done it yet. We're just hoping everything goes well. Obviously, the ambiance and the view are a bonus.”
Central tentatively scheduled games there last season, but construction was not completed in time.
Tickets at the gate are $6. Parking also costs $6.
“We're very excited and grateful,” coach Terry Totten said. “We hope to be a good tenant, and hopefully it's mutually beneficial.”
Without its own stadium, the Vikings have borrowed others for decades. In the past 10 years, they've used seven different venues.
Most often they occupied Carnegie Mellon's stadium near Central Catholic's campus in Oakland. The Vikings will host Butler there Oct. 25.
But in the past decade, they also have used the stadiums of Fox Chapel, West Mifflin, Mt. Lebanon, Gateway, Woodland Hills and Duquesne University.
The team's road warriors reputation has been worn proudly, but if Central Catholic could easily build its own stadium, it would.
There's a turf practice field at the school but little room for bleachers. Talk of building elsewhere never took root.
“Until they learn how to build a field that would levitate in space, there's no place on our campus,” Crummie said. “We just don't have the land. There's been talk about building one here or there, but I think it has only been talk.”
No arrangement has been reached to keep Central Catholic at Highmark beyond these three games, but Crummie believes both sides will be interested.
If anything, rental cost might be the only issue.
“It's more than what we are used to paying,” Crummie said. “That's the part we have to see how it works out. Hopefully, we'll have more people at our games and everything will work itself out.”
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.
- Class AAAA breakdown: Wealth of talent places target on Central Catholic
- Class AAA breakdown: Armstrong merger shakes up Greater Allegheny Conference
- HSFB preview by position: WPIAL full of game-changing kickers
- New football uniforms can change perceptions, help establish identity of new program
- Class AA breakdown: Dynamic offense to again lead 2-time PIAA champion South Fayette
- From football savvy to smarts, Freeport’s Thimons seems to have it all
- Some of the WPIAL’s top teams leaning toward a 2-back ground game
- Class A breakdown: Teams going Bear hunting again this season chasing Clairton
- McKeesport’s offensive motor and defensive stopper, Hudson is special
- Former rivals from Kittanning, Ford City bond to form River Hawks
- Gorman: Don’t judge WPIAL by the cover