What’s going on in the WPIAL this week? November 8 @BucFever422
Written by: Steve Richey on Wednesday, November 6th, 2019
#4 Mount Lebanon Blue Devils (5-3, 7-4) vs #1 Pittsburgh Central Catholic Vikings (7-1, 9-1) at Fox Chapel HS: As is both 6A playoff games this week are, this is a rematch from week nine. Central Catholic won 45-7 at Mount Lebanon. Mount Lebanon was in action last week with a 35-14 quarterfinal victory over Seneca Valley. The Blue Devils have had perfect success against the teams below them, however they were outscored 126-21 in the regular season by the top three seeds. Central Catholic had last week off thanks to having the most tiebreaker points amongst the three teams that ended 7-1 in 6A section play. The Vikings finished their regular season on a seven-game winning streak and boast the best defense in 6A at 8.7 points allowed per game. Even though Central Catholic has earned a home game, it will be played at Fox Chapel High School as the Vikings do not have a home field.
#3 North Allegheny Tigers (7-1, 10-1) at #2 Pine-Richland Rams (7-1, 9-1): Also a rematch from week nine, Pine-Richland dominated at home and beat North Allegheny 42-14. North Allegheny bounced back in a big way last week with a 48-7 win over Canon-McMillan. The Tigers got a few key pieces back last week that they didn’t have for that regular season loss at Pine-Richland. Pine-Richland return to action this week after enjoying a bye after their second-place finish in the conference. The Rams finished their regular season on a four-game winning streak after losing to Central Catholic. They are averaging the most points scored per game in 6A at 39.9.
#1 Penn-Trafford Warriors (6-0 Big East, 10-1) vs #9 Upper St. Clair Panthers (4-3 Allegheny Eight, 7-4) at West Mifflin HS: Penn-Trafford, champions of the Big East conference, advanced to the quarterfinals with a 48-7 win over Fox Chapel. The Warriors enter this game on a six-game winning streak since their only loss, a 42-21 setback at Massillon, Ohio. They are the highest scoring team left in the 5A field at 38.8 points per game and they now have the second-best defense left at 11.5 points allowed per game. Upper St. Clair was the only road team in 5A to advance to the next round with their 34-16 victory at North Hills. The Panthers have now won two of their last three games with their only loss being a 14-13 setback against #7 Bethel Park.
#4 Moon Tigers (6-1 Allegheny Eight, 9-2) vs #5 Peters Township Indians (6-1 Allegheny Eight, 10-1) at West Allegheny HS: This game is a rematch from week six in which Moon defended their home turf in a 21-13 win. It was the start of what is now a five-game winning streak for Moon and it lead them to being the winners of the Allegheny Eight conference. The Tigers defeated Franklin Regional 35-7 in the first round and have only allowed 50 points in their current win streak. Peters Township defeated Mars 47-6 last week to extend their winning streak to four games. The Indians have been excellent on both sides of the ball as they are averaging 33.4 points per game (3rd in 5A) and allow 8.5 per game (best in 5A).
#2 Gateway Gators (5-1 Big East, 9-2) vs #7 Bethel Park Blackhawks (5-2 Allegheny Eight, 7-3) at Norwin HS: Gateway has won three games in a row since losing 48-12 at Massillon, Ohio and boast the second-highest scoring team in 5A at 36.1 points per game. The Gators were provided a scare last week against Shaler, but eventually prevailed by a score of 35-21. Bethel Park has now won two straight games after defeating Kiski Area 45-16 last week. The Blackhawks have the second-lowest scoring team left in 5A at 25.7 per game and they give up the second-most points out of any team left at 18.6 per game. Both these teams have played Shaler this season. Bethel Park defeated the Titans 31-0.
#3 Penn Hills Indians (7-0 Northern, 10-1) vs #6 McKeesport Tigers (4-2 Big East, 8-3) at Hempfield Area HS: The defending PIAA champion, and Northern conference champion, Penn Hills began their title defense with a 56-17 victory over Latrobe. The Indians are riding a ten-game winning streak and their only loss was 21-0 to 6A #2 Pine-Richland in week zero. The defense has been good by allowing 12.1 points per game. McKeesport squeaked by Baldwin last week with a 21-20 win after being down 20-7 in the fourth quarter. The Tigers have been battled tested this season as their three losses have come to: #1 Penn-Trafford, #2 Gateway, and 4A state #1 Cathedral Prep. They are averaging the fourth most points in 5A at 32.5 points per game. These two teams have three common opponents in: Baldwin, Kiski Area, and Latrobe. Penn Hills respectively won those games: 20-7, 7-3, and beat Latrobe 41-14 and 56-17. McKeesport won all three games respectively: 21-20, 46-0, 34-14.
#1 Thomas Jefferson Jaguars (7-0 Big Eight, 11-0) vs #4 Blackhawk Cougars (5-2 Northwest Eight, 7-4) at Chartiers Valley HS: Thomas Jefferson, the Big Eight champions, continued to dominate their opposition by defeating Montour by a score of 49-7. The Jaguars have been stellar on both sides of the ball as they average the third-most points scored per game in the WPIAL at 48.3 while allowing the least amount of points per game in the WPIAL at 3.6. Blackhawk has now won four out of their last five games after defeating Greensburg Salem by a score of 36-7. The Cougars are the worst team, statistical wise, left in 4A at 29.7 points scored per game and 18.2 points allowed per game. These two teams have played four common opponents in: Central Valley, Greensburg Salem, Indiana, and Montour. Thomas Jefferson defeated all those teams by scores of 28-3, 42-0, 62-13, and 49-7. Blackhawk lost 32-15 to Central Valley but defeated the other three by scores of 36-7, 42-14, and 29-21.
#2 South Fayette Lions (7-0 Northwest Eight, 10-1) vs #3 Belle Vernon Leopards (6-1 Big Eight, 9-1) at Peters Township HS: South Fayette, champions of the Northwest Eight, have now won ten straight games since their week zero 27-13 loss to 5A #9 Upper St. Clair. The Lions advanced to the quarterfinals with a 52-0 win against West Mifflin. Belle Vernon has now won eight straight games after their 49-6 victory over New Castle. The Leopards are averaging 53.1 points per game during that stretch while only allowing 8.3 per game. Both teams have three common opponents in: Greensburg Salem, New Castle, and West Mifflin. South Fayette defeated all by scores of 49-0, 37-21, and 52-0. Belle Vernon won all by scores of 43-3, 49-6, and 40-7.
#1 Central Valley Warriors (7-0 Tri-County West, 10-1) vs #4 Derry Trojans (7-1 Big East, 9-2) at North Allegheny HS: Central Valley enter this game as Tri-County West champions and winners of four games in a row. The Warriors are averaging 40.2 points scored per game and allow 11.6 points per game, both numbers good for second in 3A (both behind Aliquippa). Derry has now won six games in a row following their exciting 28-27 win in overtime over Beaver Falls. The Trojans are the only Big East team remaining in the playoff field. The two teams have four common opponents: Beaver Falls, Mount Pleasant, North Catholic, and South Park. Central Valley beat all four teams by scores of 21-6, 42-6, 35-14, and 48-13. Derry beat BF 28-27, beat MP 7-0, lost to NC 13-3, and beat SP 35-7.
#2 Aliquippa Quips (6-1 Tri-County West, 10-1) vs #6 South Park Eagles (4-3 Tri-County West, 5-5) at Martorelli Stadium, West View: This game is a rematch from week seven as Aliquippa got the home shutout over South Park by a score of 29-0. Aliquippa bounced back nicely after their only loss of the year in week nine with a 27-7 win against Elizabeth Forward last week. The Quips lead the 3A field in points scored per game (40.7) and points allowed per game (9.5). South Park was one of four teams in the WPIAL to win a game on the road last week as they defeated #3 North Catholic by a score of 32-27. The Eagles are still being outscored by an average of 7.0 points per game.
#1 Washington Little Prexies (7-0 Century, 11-0) vs #8 Freedom Bulldogs (5-2 Midwestern, 8-3) at Canon-McMillan HS: Washington survived their opening round game against Shady Side Academy by winning 21-7, their tightest game of the season. The Little Prexies are still averaging the most points scored per game in 2A (45.8) and have the third lowest points allowed among teams still alive in 2A (12.4). Freedom picked a great time to end their three-game losing streak with a 21-14 win over Charleroi. The Bulldogs were 3-3 away from their home field this year. Both teams played Charleroi. Washington beat the Cougars 42-14.
#4 Neshannock Lancers (6-1 Midwestern, 9-2) vs #5 Brentwood Spartans (6-1 Three Rivers, 9-2) at Freedom HS: Neshannock enters this game as the Midwestern conference champions and also own a five-game winning streak. The Lancers defeated Serra Catholic 31-13 last week and have been good on both sides of the ball, scoring 34.1 per game while allowing 13.1. Brentwood is the only team left from the Three Rivers conference after their 28-19 victory against East Allegheny. The Spartans have the second-best defense in 2A allowing 10.6 points per game. These two teams have three common opponents in Ellwood City, Fort Cherry, and Serra Catholic. Neshannock defeated all three by scores of 44-0, 35-0, and 31-13. Brentwood defeated all three by scores of 41-0, 13-0, and 14-13.
#2 Avonworth Antelopes (6-0 Allegheny, 11-0) vs #10 New Brighton Lions (5-2 Midwestern, 8-3) at Ambridge HS: This is a rematch from week four that saw Avonworth picked up the road win by a score of 24-13. Avonworth, winners of the Allegheny conference, defeated Southmoreland 41-0 last week. The Antelopes are the third-best scoring team in 2A at 36.8 points per game and have allowed the fewest points in 2A at 10.1 per game. New Brighton was one of four road teams to win last week as they knocked off #7 Apollo-Ridge by a score of 35-21. The Lions now have a three-game winning streak and their three losses have been by a combined 22 points. These two teams have also played Apollo-Ridge and Neshannock. Avonworth defeated both by scores of 42-14 and 21-7 while New Brighton beat both 35-21 and 31-18.
#14 Riverside Panthers (4-3 Midwestern, 7-3) vs #6 McGuffey Highlanders (6-1 Century, 9-2) at Montour HS: The biggest upset of the first week of playoffs belongs to Riverside as they defeated Three Rivers conference champion, and #3 seed, Burgettstown 42-35. Riverside has now won seven of their last eight games and have one of the most dangerous offenses in 2A at 35.9 points scored per game. On the other side, the Panthers have the allowed the most points in the 2A field at 26.0 per game. McGuffey ended their two-game losing streak with a 54-23 victory against South Side last week. The Highlanders have scored the second-most points in the 2A field at 41.0 per game. Their defense also allows a lot of points at 22.7 per game.
#1 Clairton Bears (6-0 Eastern, 9-2) vs #4 Cornell Raiders (6-1 Big Seven, 9-1) at Chartiers-Houston HS: Clairton now has nine consecutive wins since losing to 3A #2 Aliquippa (35-14) and 2A #6 McGuffey (42-27). The Bears eliminated the defending WPIAL champions, OLSH, by a score of 41-0 last week. They are averaging 40.0 points per game and allowing 6.2 points per game in their winning streak. Cornell is also on a huge streak as they have won seven games in a row after their 28-25 loss to Sto-Rox. The Raiders have the lowest scoring team remaining in the 1A field at 36.1 points scored per game. These two teams have both played Greensburg CC, Laurel, and OLSH. Clairton defeated all three 21-14, 33-7, and 41-0. Cornell also defeated all three 8-0, 33-21, and 22-14.
#2 West Greene Pioneers (7-0 Tri-County South, 10-1) vs #3 Sto-Rox Vikings (6-1 Big Seven, 10-1) at Trinity Area HS: West Greene has now won three games in a row after shutting out Greensburg CC 36-0 in their playoff opener. The Pioneers are the highest scoring team left in 1A at 48.9 (2nd-best in WPIAL). Sto-Rox were done zero favors by the WPIAL football committee as they were matched up with arguably the second-best team in Jeannette (Jayhawks had to play on the road). The Vikings won a defensive battle by a score of 15-6. They have been stellar on both sides of the ball at 39.8 points scored per game and 8.7 points allowed per game. These two teams have played Chartiers-Houston and Union. West Greene won both games by scores of 51-12 and 59-26. Sto-Rox also won both by scores of 46-7 and 43-8.
PIAA 4A DISTRICT 8/10:
Cathedral Prep Ramblers (9-2) vs University Prep Wildcats (8-2) at Cupples Stadium, Pittsburgh: Cathedral Prep kicked off their PIAA title defense with a 56-0 drubbing of Fort LeBoeuf in the district 10 championship game. The Ramblers are averaging 40.1 points scored per game while allowing 19.8 points per game. They have won six straight games entering this game. University Prep had a bye last week and it was probably a welcome one after they lost the district 8 championship game by a score of 12-2 to Westinghouse. The Wildcats are averaging 26.9 points scored per game and allowing 12.4 points per game.
PIAA 3A DISTRICT 5/8/9:
Westinghouse Bulldogs (8-3) vs Bedford Bisons (9-2) at Somerset Area HS: Westinghouse is now on an eight-game winning streak after beating St. Mary’s by a score of 50-6. The Bulldogs three losses were by a combined 21 points and are averaging 35.7 points scored and allowing 12.2 per game. Bedford is coming off a 48-14 victory over Somerset. The Bisons are averaging 35.1 points scored per game while only allowing 13.0 points per game.
Follow WesternPAFootball.com on Twitter @WPAFootball