WPIAL “AAAA” Preview: Third Times Gold for Gateway?
Written by: Billy Splain on Wednesday, November 25th, 2009
There are many reasons to like the final week of November. Many like it because it is the start of the Holidays, some like it because of all the deals they can get during the busiest shopping weekend of the year, while others enjoy stuffing themselves ten times over on Thanksgiving. While next Friday to many is “Black Friday” to eight teams in western Pennsylvania the 27th of November is “Football Friday”, and they can get a pretty sweat deal without waiting in long checkout lines; a WPIAL Championship, no purchase necessary.
The “ride of ‘09” had its fair share of sudden twists and turns, while many teams expected to do well this season did others just couldn’t get started, then you had the teams no one saw coming, all made for a great WPIAL season that will come to an end on the North Shore on Friday.
Class-AAAA Championship: Woodland Hills (11-1) vs. Gateway (12-0) at 8:00pm
Gateway returns to the WPIAL AAAA Championship for the third straight season and still looking for their first title since 1984, when current head coach Terry Smith was the quarterback of the Gators. Gateways shot at a title won’t be any easier then the last two, with Woodland Hills returning to the Championship for the first time since 2005 under head coach George Novak who’s coached in seven WPIAL title games.
This isn’t all about the coaches, after all both teams have many talented players that play on both sides of the ball. For Gateway, you could talk for seven days about who has scored for the Gators this season with a “Pick-your-poison” kind of offense. There is no question who the leader of the Gators is with 4-year starter Rob Kalstine under center for the black and gold, Kalstine has passed for over 6,000-yards in his career.
As for Woodland Hills they have a power house back field that will make you pay. Senior running back Dom Timbers has ran around defenses all season and will be off to NY next year to play for the Orange Men, aside from Timbers look for Senior Cameron Tompkins to get a load of carries as well.
The WPIAL is sure to save the best for last in this year’s AAAA title game vs. two power houses in all of the WPIAL. Will Gateway get over the hump or will Woodland Hills return to the top? Find out Friday night at Heinz Field.
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