Falcons face tough test in conference favorite Gateway
TribLIVE Sports Videos
With a number of new players in Connellsville's starting lineup to begin the season, it's safe to say that last week's season-opening 22-14 loss to Kiski Area can be classified as a learning experience for the Falcons.
“When 15 of 22 (starting) kids are playing in their first varsity game in a new system, we made mistakes that are common to that situation and Kiski made a couple more plays than us,” Connellsville coach Dave McDonald said. “It's going to be a process, and we're going to get better as the year goes along. It's about us taking care of the things we can control.”
McDonald and the team had a film study session Monday.
“After we watched the film and seeing the things that hurt us, we know these are things that we can get better at,” McDonald said. “We lost to a good team, but we were right there with a good team.”
This week, a very good team comes to town as Connellsville prepares to battle Trib Total Media Class AAAA No. 2 Gateway.
“Gateway is outstanding across the board,” McDonald said. “They look like they could play on Saturdays in college football.”
The Gators have high goals for 2012, and they certainly seem to have the players to reach those goals as a number of experienced athletes return on both sides of the ball. Senior quarterback Thomas Woodson, along with senior running backs Darin Franklin and Andre Martin, lead the Gateway attack.
Last week, Woodson threw for two scores and ran for two more in a 61-6 drubbing of Latrobe. Martin finished with 138 receiving yards on 12 catches. He also rushed for three touchdowns.
McDonald acknowledged Gateway's high talent level, and said he's anxious to see how his own team bounces back against a great team after a tough loss.
“You only get so many opportunities to play against the best, so let's go out and play and see where we are at,” McDonald said. “We're focused on us getting better.”
The Falcons have some positives coming into the game. Junior quarterback Jade Maher was able to move the Connellsville offense, particularly in the early portion of the game against Kiski Area. Maher scored on a short run and also found senior running back Jordan McCrae on a short scoring pass. McCrae, a transfer from Greensburg Central Catholic, had a positive impact in his first game with Connellsville.
McDonald noted that some personnel changes may be forthcoming for the Falcons, especially on the offensive line. Sophomores Christian Stefl, Gunnar Lynch and Kevin Koontz could all get a chance at cracking the starting lineup along the offensive front.
In last season's meeting between the teams, Gateway blanked Connellsville, 40-0.
Jason Black is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-626-3534.
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.
- Big plays cost Steelers defense in 43-19 preseason loss at Bills
- Walk-off single moves Pennsylvania team into LLWS title game
- Strong-armed outfielder Garcia growing into all-around threat
- Shale gas violations down as DEP steps up inspections
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle’s faith in Polanco pays off
- Shaler man’s effort restores glory to flag display at Millvale post office
- MLB notebook: Dodgers voice Scully set to end 67-year run in 2016
- Shaler man charged with homicide, abuse of corpse in McKeesport woman’s death
- Architecture: Pittsburgh history in 10 houses
- Beirut protests grow as summer garbage crisis lingers
- Man arrested in deputy’s ambush