Share This Page

Clairton opens PIAA playoffs vs. Berlin-Brothersvalley

| Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012, 11:12 p.m.
Christopher Horner
Clairton's Tyler Boyd eludes Sto-Rox's Elisha Bonner to throw a long touchdown pass on a reverse during the second quarter of the WPIAL Class A championship game Friday, Nov. 23, 2012 at Heinz Field. Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Christopher Horner
Clairton quarterback Armani Ford. Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review

PIAA class A Quarterfinals

Clairton (13-0) vs. Berlin-Brothersvalley (11-1), 7 p.m. Friday at Golden Eagle Stadium, Somerset

Clairton has spent a lot of time chasing history and that will continue as the Bears head into the state playoffs gearing up for a run at their fourth consecutive PIAA Class A title.

Central Catholic (Class AAAA in 1988, 2004 and '07), Rochester (Class A in 1998, 2000-01) and Thomas Jefferson (Class AAA in 2004, 07-08) are the only other WPIAL schools to win three state championships. None were able to do what Clairton has — playing in a fifth consecutive state final and possibly winning four straight.

Perhaps the biggest challenge in preparing to play Clairton is to just concentrate on the game.

“Yeah, it's tough because even where we're at in the state, that's what everybody talks about and we told our kids that they have absolutely nothing to lose in this game,” Berlin-Brothersvalley coach Doug Paul said. “Besides themselves, there's probably nobody in the whole state of Pennsylvania that thinks we have a chance, and we're definitely going into this with a ‘David versus Goliath' mentality and just play ball.”

And even that might not be enough.

Clairton has been at its best when it uses a Wildcat running attack featuring Tyler Boyd, who eclipsed 2,000 yards for the season with 144 yards and a touchdown against Sto-Rox in the WPIAL championship game. But in the last two weeks the Bears have diversified their attack and complemented Boyd with a devastating passing game that has scored eight touchdowns through the air, one on an option pass from Boyd to Santeaun Sims and the other seven from the right arm of quarterback Armani Ford.

“This whole year, I've been saying that I hope these boys don't think they're going to stop me because, if they do stop me, they're not going to stop all of us,” Boyd said. “We're loaded with athletes and they're going to have to stop all of us as one, so it's going to be tough for them.”

KEYS TO VICTORY — C: The Bears' defense has allowed just 131 yards per game this season. Their play will be key against RB Drew Glotfelty. B-B: Force turnovers. Sto-Rox forced two Clairton interceptions in the WPIAL championship and held close in the first half.

PREDICTION — Clairton, 42-7

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.