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Knoch tops Greensburg Salem, behind Tackett's four TDs

Steven Dietz, Contributing Photographer
Knoch High's #8 Benjamin Tackett rushes for yards before being brought down by the Greensburg Salem's #15 Nate Sweeney in the second half.

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By Paul Kogut
Friday, Aug. 31, 2012, 11:12 p.m.

Knoch earned a reputation for having an explosive offense en route to finishing as WPIAL Class AAA runner-up last season.

Senior running back Ben Tackett appears ready to do his share in keeping the Knights' offense clicking.

Tackett scored all four touchdowns for No. 8 Knoch in a 28-14 win over Greensburg Salem on Friday night in a Class AAA Greater Allegheny Conference opener at Knoch Knights Stadium.

Tackett provided most of the big plays for Knoch (1-0, 1-0). He returned a kickoff 93 yards for a TD late in the first quarter, rushed for 48 yards on 16 carries and two touchdowns, and caught a pair of passes for 17 yards and another score.

“I feel good about what I was able to do, but I have to remember there were 10 guys blocking on the kickoff return and 10 guys blocking on the touchdown runs and (quarterback) Dakota (Bruggeman) put the ball right on the money,” Tackett said.

To cap the first half with his team clinging to a 21-14 lead, Tackett intercepted a desperation pass into the end zone.

“Ben's competitive spirit abounds,” Knoch coach Mike King said. “It flows out of his ears.”

Senior tailback Tyler Shook rushed for 148 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries and had three receptions for 23 yards and a score to lead Greensburg Salem (0-1, 0-1). He broke loose for a 78-yard TD run early in the second quarter.

“He gives us some big-play potential, but we have to find more consistency,” Greensburg Salem coach Casey Cavanaugh said.

Greensburg Salem outgained Knoch, 268-119, but that didn't matter in the end. The Knights averaged 36 points per game last year as they put together one of the best seasons in school history by rolling to a 12-1 record.

Knoch claimed two interceptions and three fumble recoveries.

Paul Kogut is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-224-2696 or

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