High school football notebook: First-year coach Gildon helps CWNC to 6-0 mark
The WPIAL and City League welcomed almost two dozen new football coaches this season, either first-time hires or veterans who changed schools.
But of those 23 teams, only one remains undefeated. Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic started 6-0 under first-year coach Jason Gildon, a three-time Pro Bowl selection and the Steelers' all-time sack leader.
The Trojans, ranked No. 2 in WPIAL Class A, have outscored their first six opponents 273-30. They've won 33-7, 35-7, 49-0, 41-6, 65-3 and 50-7.
“It was great for a first-year coach to come in and have a great group of guys,” said Gildon, who was an assistant at Seneca Valley and Peters Township, on TribLive radio. “We've been very blessed to have not only talent but genuinely good kids who embraced us as a staff.
“I've seen it before; it could have went either way. We're a new staff. These kids are used to the staff they had. They're used to doing things a certain way. We could have had that friction coming in, but we were fortunate we didn't have that. We were able to hit the ground running and go out there and have some success.”
CWNC (6-0, 5-0) visits No. 4 Avonworth (5-1, 4-1) this Friday for likely the toughest matchup on its schedule.
CWNC won 28-0 in last year's regular season but lost the rematch 28-21 in the WPIAL semifinals.
South Fayette's 38-game winning streak ranks among the longest active streaks in the nation, according to Maxpreps.
The Lions' winning streak entered the season ranked as the 10th longest and now is sixth.
The longest still active are Edgewood Academy (Elmore, Ala.), with 65 wins; Maine-Endwell (Endwell, N.Y.), with 57; Allen, Texas, with 50; Junction City, Ark., with 41; and Eden Prairie, Minn., with 40.
South Fayette's streak is tied for the third-longest in WPIAL history. Greensburg also won 38 consecutive from 1913-16. The only streaks longer were by Braddock (46 in 1955-60) and Clairton (66 in 2009-13).
Clairton's winning streak is the state's longest, ahead of Central Bucks West, which won 59 in 1997-2000.
Root Sports will televise Friday night's matchup between two top-ranked teams. Class AAA No. 1 West Allegheny (6-0) faces Class AAAA No. 1 Woodland Hills (6-0) at 7:30 p.m. at the Wolvarena.
Seneca Valley (3-3, 3-2) at Class AAAA No. 5 Central Catholic (5-1, 3-1) will be shown on WPNT (22, The Point). The Xfinity game is Sto-Rox (1-5, 1-4) at South Fayette (6-0, 6-0).
Quips' blood drive
Aliquippa senior DiMantae Bronaugh, who was diagnosed in August with leukemia, is teaming with the Central Blood Bank to host a blood drive Oct. 20 in Beaver. The event runs from noon to 7 p.m. at Beaver United Methodist Church on College Ave. Blood donors must be at least 17, or 16 with parental consent.