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Mt. Pleasant's Mellors hoping to build on solid finish to 2011 campaign

| Friday, Aug. 24, 2012, 1:26 a.m.
Tyler Mellors has shown no lingering problems from last year's leg injury that forced him to miss a large portion of the season. Evan Sanders/Daily Courier

For Mt. Pleasant running back Tyler Mellors, the 2011 season began with a tough break.

Mellors broke his right ankle during a scrimmage with Indiana and was forced to miss the first six games of the regular season. Mellors was one of many Mt. Pleasant players who suffered injuries at some point last season, which ended with a first-round playoff loss to Washington.

“When we were going through some tough games that we lost, I felt horrible,” Mellors said, recalling difficult defeats against Ellwood City and Greensburg Central Catholic. “All I could do was sit there and watch.”

Mellors had to wear a walking boot for nearly a month and was forced to do several weeks of rehabilitation. However, he did the work necessary to come back strong from the injury and was a key contributor to the Vikings' late-season surge to the playoffs. In four games, Mellors rushed for 495 yards and five touchdowns on 59 carries. He also caught nine passes for 112 yards.

“It felt great that I could come back and be the same player,” Mellors said.

Although Mellors missed a large portion of last season, the Vikings had players step up and fill the role.

“Dalton Bull and Paul Caletri came in and did a super job,” coach Bo Ruffner said. “But Tyler gives us a different type of running back. He is an explosive player for us on the offensive side of the ball. He is able to do special things that you just can't coach. We're looking forward to having him back (for a full season).”

In his junior season, Mellors fully expects an increased role in the Mt. Pleasant offense.

“I think I'll have more to do, and I love it,” Mellors said.

He's hoping for a 1,000-yard season for himself, but more importantly, he's working to help the team accomplish its goals.

“Our team goal is to go to the WPIAL finals,” Mellors said. “That would be a good start.”

Mellors also will play linebacker.

Jason Black is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at jblack@tribweb.com or 724-626-3534.

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