Kiski Area's passing game shines in win over Connellsville
Kiski Area's Dave Heavner had plenty to celebrate after his first win as coach.
It wasn't much of a concern to him.
“I told the team all credit goes to them. I have a great staff. I have dedicated men who know how to coach adolescents” Heavner said. “I told them the only thing we can do is put the game plan together and call plays. In the end, they have to go out and execute.”
Kiski Area's air attack was the difference in outlasting Connellsville, 22-14, in Quad East play Friday at Davis Field in Vandergrift.
Kiski Area gained 295 yards, with two players accounting for most of them: junior receiver Joe Brungo and senior quarterback Ricky Carter.
Brungo's first touchdown, a 27-yard reception, put Kiski Area on the board late in the first quarter. He then helped convert a two-point conversion for an 8-7 lead.
“I don't ever lie. The only thing I lie about is my height,” Heavner said. “The bottom of the front page (of the play sheet): ‘Brungo plays.' There are about 12 plays right there — when we need a play or we need a momentum shifter — I'm going to Joey Brungo.”
Brungo later added a 49-yard touchdown to give the Cavaliers their winning margin late in the third quarter.
Carter, a Gateway transfer, finished 12 of 15 for 147 yards and two scores.
“He never played quarterback before. This offseason, we moved him to quarterback,” Heavner said. “He is a natural athlete and a natural leader.”
Connellsville coach David McDonald wasn't disappointed with his team's effort.
“Defensively, we played well enough to win,” McDonald said. “On offense, we have to make some corrections. The only way I know how to fix that is to come to work Monday morning, which we're going to do. This one is squarely on me.”
Connellsville (0-1, 0-1) moved the ball well in the first half but only crossed the 50-yard line once in the second half.
Senior running back James Stevenson rushed 11 times for 91 yards.
Junior quarterback Jade Maher completed just 4 of 11 passes for 67 yards. He found senior running back Jordan McCrae for a 15-yard touchdown and the game's opening score.
Sophomore Darrell Ross led Connellsville with three catches for 48 yards.
“I think we played with great effort,” McDonald said. “I know this about this team: We're always going to show up, and we're always going to play hard.”
Dave Yohe is a freelance writer.