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High School Sports

Week 8 Capsules

| Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2001

Class AAAA

Quad North Conference

Game to watch

Shaler (4-3, 2-3) at No. 9 Mt. Lebanon (4-3, 3-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
This is a must-win for Shaler. The Titans are a game behind Bethel Park (4-3, 2-2), which plays Butler, and this is the last conference game on their schedule. Shaler kept itself alive by forcing five turnovers in a 17-10 win over Butler last week. If Shaler wins, it will need No. 10 Bethel Park to lose its last two games to qualify for the playoffs. Mt. Lebanon dropped a non-conference game to McKeesport, 46-30, despite 267 yards and four touchdowns from Brian Young, the leading rusher in the WPIAL. Mt. Lebanon is tied for second place with North Hills, which it beat, 24-21, in Week 5.

Quick hits

The conference championship probably will not be determined until next week. No. 5 North Allegheny (5-2, 4-1), which plays Hempfield in a non-conference game this week, can win its first conference championship since 1996 by beating No. 3 North Hills (6-1, 3-1) next week. North Hills can win by beating Seneca Valley and North Allegheny combined with a Mt. Lebanon loss. The Blue Devils can win their second consecutive title if they win both of their games and a North Hills beats North Allegheny.

Quad East Conference

Game to watch

No. 2 Central Catholic (6-1, 4-1) at No. 6 McKeesport (4-3, 2-2), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Central Catholic is coming off an impressive win over previously unbeaten Penn Hills, 28-14. Steve Buches, a top tight end prospect, caught nine passes for 154 yards and a touchdown for the Vikings. Central Catholic already has clinched a postseason berth but is still playing for one of the top seeds in the playoffs. Ryan Kwiecinski led McKeesport to a 46-30 win over Mt. Lebanon with 119 yards and three touchdowns. The Tigers are fourth in the conference and play Baldwin next week. If Baldwin loses to Penn Hills this week, McKeesport will clinch a playoff spot. If McKeesport loses and Baldwin wins, it will set up a big game next week to decide the final playoff spot.

Quick hits

Connellsville upset Baldwin, 22-16, last week behind B.J. Straughter's 137 yards. The Falcons will try to play the role of spoiler again this week when they face No. 1 Woodland Hills. The Wolverines (7-0, 4-0) can clinch at least a share of their third consecutive conference championship with a win.

Quad South Conference

Game to watch

Latrobe (6-1, 4-1) at Kiski Area (4-3, 3-2), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Latrobe snapped an eight-game losing streak to Norwin with a 35-13 win last week. Sophomore Ryan Flynn needs 92 yards this week to give him 2,500 yards passing for his career. The Wildcats still are playing for a share of the conference championship. Latrobe needs to win its next two games and hope that Plum can beat Penn-Trafford this week to clinch at least a share of the conference title. Kiski Area is looking to clinch its first playoff berth since 1990. The Cavaliers lost a tough game to Penn Trafford, 20-14, but still can finish as high as second in the conference with wins in their final two games. For the Cavaliers to beat Latrobe, Corey Smith will need to continue to post impressive numbers. Smith, a 6-foot-3, 185 pound senior, has passed for 1,515 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Quick hits

Franklin Regional, which hasn't qualified for the playoffs since 1997, can make the postseason with wins over Norwin and Gateway and if Kiski Area loses one of its two remaining games. No. 6 Penn Trafford clinched at least a playoff spot with its win over Kiski Area last week.

Quad West Conference

Game to watch

No. 8 Upper St. Clair (6-1, 5-0) at Ringgold (4-3, 4-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Both teams already have clinched playoff berths, but a conference championship is on the line. Upper St. Clair won nine consecutive conference championships from 1989-97 but has not won a title since. The Panthers count on Brad Wilson to lead the offense. Wilson has rushed for 831 yards and 12 touchdowns. Ringgold shared the conference title with Canon-McMillan last season and can clinch at least a share of second place with wins over Upper St. Clair this week and Peters Township next week. Lorenzo Gardner has established himself as a versatile athlete with more than 1,000 total yards.

Quick hits

Fox Chapel has won two consecutive games for the first time since 1997. The Foxes (3-4, 3-2) can clinch a playoff spot with a win over Canon-McMillan this week. If Fox Chapel loses to Canon-McMillan, it still can qualify if Canon-McMillan beats Trinity next week. If Canon-McMillan (4-3, 3-2) loses to Fox Chapel, it still can qualify by beating Trinity next week. Trinity (5-3, 3-2) needs to beat Laurel Highlands this week to remain alive. The Hillers will need to beat Canon-McMillan next week to qualify.

Class AAA

Big Seven Conference

Game to watch

No. 8 Thomas Jefferson (5-2, 3-1) at Chartiers Valley (3-4, 2-2), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Thomas Jefferson seems to have recovered from its midseason slide and appears ready to make a run at the conference championship. Nate Starrett has put together impressive back-to-back performances, rushing for 382 yards and six touchdowns in the past two weeks since moving from receiver. The Jaguars need to beat Chartiers Valley this week and pull for a West Mifflin win over West Allegheny. That would set up a game next week against West Mifflin, with the conference championship on the line. Chartiers Valley did little to help itself last week in a 48-6 loss to West Allegheny. The Colts managed just 20 total yards and turned the ball over three times while yielding 378 yards to West Allegheny. Chartiers Valley can redeem itself with a win over TJ this week while keeping an eye on the Keystone Oaks-McGuffey game. The Colts play at KO next week in a game that will determine the fourth and final playoff spot.

Quick hits

Elizabeth Forward (1-6, 0-5) gets a shot at former Warriors coach Rich Bowen. Bowen spent 14 years as coach at Elizabeth Forward and Serra Catholic before taking over as the Yough coach this season. Yough (2-4, 1-3) started the season with two wins but has not played well since. Keystone Oaks put together its best rushing game of the season last week. The Golden Eagles, who have had trouble running the ball, got a breakthrough performance last week from JoeJoe Lamonde, who had 160 yards and two touchdowns.

Greater Allegheny Conference

Game to watch

No. 6 Kittanning (6-1, 3-1) at No. 7 Pine-Richland (5-2, 3-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Both teams have looked impressive the past two weeks. Kittanning used an impressive ground game, rushing for more 400 yards, in a 42-13 win over Knoch last week. Ken Roudybush led the Wildcats with 212 yards to give him 855 for the season. Pine-Richland will need to stop Kittanning's running game. Joining Roudybush in the backfield is Adam Brochetti, who has rushed for 612 yards this season. Pine-Richland will counter with Mark Nicholas, who rushed for 127 yards last week in a 59-0 win over Deer Lakes. The Rams defense has played well the past two weeks, holding Valley and Deer Lakes to just six points combined. The winner of this game will take sole possession of second place in the conference.

Quick hits

No. 10 Highlands and Knoch are in a battle for the last playoff spot in the conference. Highlands (5-2, 2-2) appears to have the inside edge with games against Deer Lakes (1-6, 0-4) and Kittanning, who the Rams have beaten five consecutive seasons. Knoch (3-4, 2-3) has a non-conference game this week against New Castle before playing host to Pine-Richland next week. The Knights will need to beat Pine-Richland and hope for Highlands to lose both of its games. If the two finish with the same record, Highlands has the edge on Knoch thanks to a 31-28 overtime victory in Week 3.

Parkway Conference

Game to watch

Blackhawk (4-3, 4-1) at No. 4 Hopewell (6-1, 4-0), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Both teams have clinched playoff spots, but a conference championship is on the line. Blackhawk lost its fourth consecutive game last week, 20-14, to Moon. Had the Cougars won, they could have won their first conference championship since 1998 with a win over Hopewell this week. J.R. Barley had his second consecutive 100-yard passing game last week, throwing for 165 yards give him 835 yards for the season. Hopewell knocked off previously unbeaten West Mifflin, 28-13, in a non-conference game last week. Hopewell had 348 yards rushing and rallied from a 13-point deficit to beat the Titans. Paul Posluszny now has 851 yards on the season for Hopewell. If the Vikings win this week, they will clinch at least a share of the conference championship.

Quick hits

Moon lost Austin Sykes for at least three weeks. Sykes fractured his wrist in three places in Moon's 20-14 win over Blackhawk. The Tigers are hoping to have Sykes back in the lineup for the playoffs. Ambridge and New Castle are locked in a battle for the final playoff spot. Ambridge (1-6, 1-3) needs to beat winless Montour this week to set the stage for a winner-makes-the-playoffs matchup with New Castle next week. New Castle (3-4, 2-3) plays Knoch in a non-conference game this week before facing the Bridgers next week.

Keystone Conference

Game to watch

Greensburg Salem (3-3, 2-1) at Derry (3-4, 1-2), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Having clinched a playoff spot, Greensburg Salem is playing for positioning. The Golden Lions got back on the winning track last week with a 42-0 victory over Yough. Akeem Vance has had four consecutive 100-yard games for Greensburg Salem to give him 762 yards rushing this season. Derry could use a win to improve its chances of playing in the postseason. The Trojans play at Yough next week in a game that will decide the last playoff spot despite both teams having losing records.

Quick hits

There is a new No. 1 team in Class AAA of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review WPIAL Coaches Poll. Uniontown (7-0, 4-0) is having its best season in decades and a win over Mt. Pleasant this week would earn the Red Raiders the conference championship. Kevin McLee went over the 1,000-yard mark last week with 326 yards against Derry. McLee also scored five touchdowns to give him 18 on the season. Belle Vernon has qualified for the playoffs for the eighth consecutive season. The Leopards (4-3, 3-2) play Class AAAA power Altoona this week.

Class AA

Allegheny Conference

Game to watch

Ford City (5-2, 4-2) at No. 3 Mars (6-1, 6-0), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Ford City has the ability to beat anybody in the conference, and this could be an upset special. The Sabers beat Burrell, 21-12, last week to keep their playoff hopes alive. Rich Bennett ran for 85 of the team's 232 yards. Bennett now has 782 yards. Ford City will need to duplicate its defensive effort to beat Mars. Last week, the Sabers held Burrell to 47 yards rushing. The Planets will look to get Brad Meuller going early. Mueller, one of the top sprinters in the WPIAL, has rushed for more than 800 yards this season. The Planets' defense will be called upon this week. Ford City averages 30.4 points per game, but Mars held Shady Side Academy to just 8 yards of total offense last week. Ford City needs a win to keep alive its quest for the second playoff berth in school history.

Quick hits

Freeport looms in Ford City's shadow. The Yellow Jackets (4-3, 3-3) play Shady Side Academy this week before a showdown with Ford City next week in a game that probably will decide the fourth and final playoff spot. Riverside (3-4, 3-4) might have played itself out of the playoff race the past few weeks. The Panthers started the season 3-0, but have dropped four in a row and are now in fifth place in the conference.

Century Conference

Game to watch

South Park (4-3, 3-2) at No. 8 North Catholic (5-2, 4-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
South Park needs to win to keep its playoff hopes alive. The Eagles need quarterback Ivan Braszo to add to his 927 yards passing to beat North Catholic this week. The Trojans are coming off a tough 21-13 loss to Jeannette, where they allowed 352 yards rushing. South Park is one game behind Steel Valley and plays the Ironmen next week for the final playoff spot. North Catholic is currently in a three-way tie for first place with Brentwood and Jeannette. The Trojans play Brentwood (6-1, 4-1) next week. Marty Nasiadka needs 61 yards to top the 1,000-yard mark for the second consecutive season.

Quick hits

Steel Valley (5-2, 3-2) plays South Allegheny this week before its season finale against South Park next week. Quarterback Luke Getsy's 1,274 yards and 15 touchdowns leads the Ironmen. South Allegheny, under second-year coach Jim Ward, a Steel Valley graduate, will get a chance at snapping its 18-game losing streak next week. The Gladiators (0-7, 0-5) play host to East Allegheny (1-6, 1-4), whose only win this season was against Southmoreland, 28-20.

Midwestern Conference

Game to watch

No. 10 New Brighton (5-2, 5-1) at No. 6 Aliquippa (6-1, 5-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Both teams have locked in playoff berths and are in a three-way tie for first place with Beaver Falls. New Brighton is coming off a 35-6 win over Laurel. Aliquippa will test the Lions' defense, which leads the conference with 73 points allowed this season. Aliquippa is coming off its worst loss in seven years, a 38-8 whipping by Beaver Falls. The Quips managed just 57 total yards while allowing 285 to the Tigers. Aliquippa has not lost back-to-back games since Week 2 and 3 of 1997, when it lost to Farrell, then Beaver.

Quick hits

Mohawk and Center are in a tight race for fourth place. Mohawk (4-3, 4-2) has a tough schedule with No. 2 Beaver Falls this week and New Brighton next week. Center (4-3, 3-3) plays Laurel this week and Aliquippa next week. If both teams finish next week with the same record, Mohawk would win on the tiebreaker. The Warriors beat Center, 46-0, in Week 1 of the season.

Interstate Conference

Game to watch

No. 5 Waynesburg (6-1, 4-1) at Carlynton (5-2, 4-1), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Both teams are in the playoffs but are playing for a higher place in the conference. Waynesburg is in the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. The Raiders blew away Beth-Center, 62-7, behind 104 yards and three touchdowns on four carries from Corey Walsh. Waynesburg's defense scored three touchdowns while limiting Beth-Center to minus-8 yards passing. They will be tested this week against Carlynton's Mike Wilmus. A senior, Wilmus passed for 217 yards and a touchdown against Washington last week, and has passed for 842 yards and 13 touchdowns this season. Carlynton has not qualified for the playoffs since 1997.

Quick hits

The fourth spot in the conference is still up for grabs between Seton-La Salle, Brownsville and Charleroi. Seton-La Salle (4-3, 3-2) plays Charleroi (3-4, 2-3) this week. Charleroi needs to beat the Rebels and then top No. 1 Washington next week to get in. Seton-La Salle plays Carlynton next week. If Seton splits the two games, the Rebels will advance to the playoffs. If Seton loses both games and Charleroi wins both, the Cougars will advance to the playoffs. For Brownsville to have a chance, it would need to beat Beth-Center and Waynesburg and to have Seton-La Salle to lose both of its remaining games.

Class A

Big Seven Conference

Game to watch

Sto-Rox (3-4, 3-2) at No. 2 Monaca (7-0, 5-0), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Sto-Rox is coming off a big win over South Side Beaver, 36-14. To beat Monaca, Sto-Rox will need Adam DiMichele to repeat his performance of last week. The sophomore passed for 404 yards and three touchdowns. DiMichele now has 999 yards for the season. Monaca is still at the top of the conference with the much-anticipated game of the year next week, against Rochester. The Indians shut out Neshannock, 36-0, last week. Ricky Schultz had his best game of the season, passing for 167 yards and four touchdowns. Monaca's defense is starting to round into form, holding Neshannock without a first down and to 24 yards of total offense. They will be tested this week by DiMichele and Maurice Cohen, who had three touchdowns last week for Sto-Rox.

Quick hits

Western Beaver plays Union Saturday before traveling to Sto-Rox next week to decide who will advance to the playoffs. If Western Beaver beats Union, the winner next week will get the final playoff berth.

Eastern Conference

Game to watch

No. 7 Greensburg CC (5-2, 5-0) at No. 1 Duquesne (7-0, 5-0), 1:30 p.m., Saturday:
Greensburg Central Catholic won the conference championship last year on a late-season surge. The Centurians can win the conference again with an upset of Duquesne. To beat Duquesne, Jordan Hohn will need to have a big game running the ball. Hohn already has rushed for 651 yards this season. Greensburg Central beat Duquesne twice last season, once in the regular season (42-26) and once in the playoffs (34-14). Duquesne beat Riverview last Saturday, 25-8. Todd Harris has been Duquesne's star, rushing for 172 yards against Riverview. Whoever wins this week will need to win again next week to win the conference championship outright and avoid a split.

Quick hits

Wilkinsburg might have won the battle for the last playoff spot by pounding Clairton, 40-7, last week to move into fourth place in the conference. Clairton has made the playoffs every season since 1995, but the Bears' streak could come to an end this year.

Ohio Valley Conference

Game to watch

Chartiers-Houston (2-5, 2-3) at No. 6 Fort Cherry (5-2, 5-0), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
Chartiers-Houston needs a win to make up a game on Burgettstown. Chartiers-Houston lost to Cornell, 16-14, when it failed to convert on a two-point conversion with 54 seconds left. Mike Meili followed his school-record performance with 102 yards last week. Meili now has 1,134 yards for the season. Fort Cherry already has qualified for the playoffs for the sixth consecutive season. The Rangers still need a win to clinch the championship. Fort Cherry has a talented offense, featuring Perry Ivery, Josh Kemp, Ben Farrell and Trevor Martinek, who combine to create one of the deepest backfields in Class A. Chartiers-Houston needs to win both of its remaining two games and Burgettstown must lose its final two games for the Buccaneers to qualify for the playoffs.

Quick hits

Wil Allen had his fifth consecutive 100-yard game of the season last week. Allen rushed for 169 yards in a 16-14 win over Chartiers-Houston. Cornell (5-2, 4-1) plays host to South Fayette (5-2, 4-1) for second place in the conference.

Tri-County South Conference

Game to watch

California (5-1, 5-1) at No. 3 Monessen (7-0, 6-0), 7:30 p.m., Friday:
California has to find a way to stop the bleeding after a 43-13 pounding by Carmichaels. The Trojans allowed three 100-yard rushers for Carmichaels. Ryan Robinson managed 100 yards on the ground for California, which is in a two-way tie for third place with Mapletown. Monessen rolled up 411 rushing yards in a 47-6 win over Jefferson-Morgan. The Greyhounds still have the top defense in the WPIAL, allowing 20 points all season. Monessen must first get through this game before thinking about facing Carmichaels next week in a game that will decide the conference championship.

Quick hits

What happened to Jefferson-Morgan• Four weeks ago, the Rockets had allowed just two points. Since then, the Rockets have been outscored 122-21 and are in fifth place in the conference. Winless Geibel and Frazier, who meet this week, have combined to score just 61 points while giving up a total of 586.

City League

Game to watch

South (4-3) at Peabody (5-2), 3:30 p.m., Thursday:
South is in a tie for fourth place in the City League with Oliver. Unfortunately for the Orioles, Perry is waiting to pounce next week. South running back Quinton Taylor had another 100-yard game last week and is second in the City with 573 yards. South needs Oliver to lose its two games and Brashear to drop at least one of its two remaining games to get into the City playoffs. Peabody dropped its second consecutive game to Schenley, 14-6. The Highlanders cannot afford to lose to South this week with Westinghouse (6-1) coming up next week. Two losses for Peabody would knock them out of the playoffs. Brandon Carruthers leads the City with 735 passing.

Best of the rest

Oliver (4-3) at Westinghouse (6-1), 3:30 p.m., Friday:
Oliver got a big 22-6 win over South last week to move into fourth place in the City League. Denny Ray Robinson passed for 158 yards and a touchdown for Oliver, who is looking to sneak into the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. Westinghouse has qualified for the City playoffs for the first time since 1997. The Bulldogs are led by Karell Lane, who leads the City in scoring with 92 points. Lane rushed for 184 yards and five touchdowns in a 38-6 win over Langley. Oliver needs a win this week and will need to hold off Brashear next week to keep its postseason aspirations alive.

Schenley (3-4) at Perry (7-0), 5 p.m., Saturday: Schenley will be looking to play the giant killer for the second straight week. Schenley knocked off Peabody last week, 14-6, and dropped the Highlanders into third place in the City League. Its unlikely the Spartans can beat Perry, but if they do, it would be one of the top upsets of the season. Perry continued its dominance last week with a 64-0 drubbing of Allderdice. The Commodores have taken hold of the City and put a lock on first place. Kelvin Drewery leads the City with 794 yards rushing. Perry has shut out six of its opponents and allowed just six points all season while scoring 333.

Quick hits

Brashear (3-4) has won its past two games and is making a run at its fifth consecutive City League playoff appearance. The Bulls need South to lose both of its remaining games. If Oliver loses to Westinghouse this week, and Brashear beats Langley, the winner of next week's matchup will get the fourth spot in the City playoffs. Carrick (0-7) has chance to end its skid this week against Allderdice. Allderdice (0-5) has been outscored, 100-0, over the past two weeks. The Raiders have scored 30 points all season. Langley (1-6) has scored 63 points this season. What makes that impressive is that the Mustangs had scored just 90 points over the previous two seasons. Langley will get a chance to match that total when it faces Carrick, who has given up 270 points, next week.

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