| Sports

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

High school football notebook: Valley QB Matthews set to return

TribLIVE Sports Videos

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Valley's Ty Matthews (12) throws as he is hit by Shady Side Academy's Patrick Loughran (52) on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Valley Memorial Stadium in New Kensington.
Top high school sports
By Bill Beckner
Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013, 9:57 p.m.

Ty Matthews stayed a little longer at the doctor's office Tuesday. And it wasn't to read an old Sports Illustrated in the waiting room.

“I wasn't leaving until he said I was cleared to play,” the Valley quarterback said, smiling.

Matthews got his wish, receiving the medical go-ahead to return to action Friday night when No. 13 seed Valley (6-3) travels to play No. 4 Mt. Pleasant (9-0) in a Class AA first-round playoff game.

The senior, who also plays outside linebacker, has missed the past two-and-a-half games with a dislocated left shoulder.

He throws right-handed, but doctors didn't want to risk further damage and had him sit as a precaution. Matthews will wear extra padding on the shoulder.

“It was nice to get mental reps,” Matthews said of the time off, much of which he spent rehabbing. “Sometimes (an injury) can buy you a break that you need.”

With Matthews back, Valley can better utilize skill players such as Adrian Morris, Matthews' backup, who could be more valuable at receiver or as a rusher.

Senior Devin Houser can contribute out of the backfield and sophomores D'Aundre Johnson and Tyson Hill also can get more involved.

“We can go back to four-receiver sets,” Valley coach Chad Walsh said. “We can get D'Aundre and Tyson on the field at the same time. It's good to have Ty's leadership back. He's a hard worker and the other guys see that.

Senior running back Demetrius Houser is questionable for this week's game for personal reasons.

Familiar coach

Kittanning (9-0) plays host to Yough (5-4) on Friday in another first-round game in Class AA. Wildcats coach Frank Fabian will see a familiar face on the Yough coaching staff.

Longtime A-K Valley assistant Clay Kunselman is Yough's offensive coordinator.

Kunselman, who has coached at several places, including Kiski Area and Hempfield, was Ford City's junior high coach when Fabian played there on the varsity.

“He's a spread guy,” Fabian said. “Similar to us.”

Size matters

Apollo-Ridge has faced some good quarterbacks this season, but not one with the roster specs of Beth-Center's Gino Faieta.

The senior stands 6-foot-3 and weighs 255 pounds.

“He's one big boy,” Apollo-Ridge coach John Skiba said.

Beth-Center has scored the most points in Class A, averaging 44.6 points per game.

Allegheny woes

The Class AA Allegheny Conference has not fared well in the postseason in recent years, but this year's qualifiers — Kittanning, Shady Side Academy, Valley and Summit Academy — are looking to change that.

The conference is 1-7 in the playoffs the past two years. Its last win was Shady Side Academy over Beaver, 35-21, in 2011.


“We haven't done anything really. It would be great for our community to get another win. I don't think we've shown our best yet.” — Apollo-Ridge coach John Skiba, whose team has one playoff win (2007).

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read Football

  1. Size up front a boost for Deer Lakes
  2. Birdie says heat is on for another season of football picks
  3. Fox Chapel hopes to establish run game under Loughran
  4. Burrell looks to rebound from winless season
  5. From football savvy to smarts, Freeport’s Thimons seems to have it all
  6. Kiski Area leaders provide silver lining after winless season
  7. Veterans to help transition for new QB at Redbank Valley
  8. Gorman: Scouts won’t forget Paris
  9. Unsung heroes step up for Knoch
  10. Brown to carry load for Apollo-Ridge
  11. West Shamokin hopes to join postseason pack