Lebo, PT battle for playoff position
Bethel Park at Upper St. Clair is not the only critical conference clash on tap this Friday. When Mt. Lebanon visits Peters Township for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff Oct. 11, a playoff spot could be on the line for these two Southeastern Conference foes.
That’s positive news for the Blue Devils, for after a decisive win over Canon-McMillan, 49-7, they improved to 2-4 overall. “It’s amazing what a win can do for you,” said Lebo skipper Mike Melnyk.
Meanwhile, Peters Township evened its record to 3-3 overall with a 35-3 win over Plum. In the division, the Indians are tied for fifth place with Lebo. Both are 2-3.
The top five teams in each of the three Quad-A divisions qualify for the postseason as does a wild card. That team will have the best record among all the remaining Quad-A teams.
“Absolutely,” said Melnyk regarding the playoff ramifications of the contest against PT. “We need a win. If we want to continue playing, we must get better and we must win (this game).
“We’ve dug ourselves a hole all season and we’ve told them the only way out is to stop digging and start climbing. Last week was the first step.”
For the Blue Devils, the win over the Big Macs saw the emergence of Ed Jenkins as quarterback. The sophomore completed 9 of 10 attempts for 117 yards and two scores of 10 and 53 yards to Troy Apke and Shane Lefever.
“(Jenkins) had a solid game,” Melnyk said. “He has progressed and earned his way into a starting role by performing well in JV games and practices. Until he stepped in, we’d been searching for an identity on offense. As long as he continues to do well, he will get the opportunity to play.”
Against the Big Macs, Lebo’s ground attack identified with Jake Rolfsen. The senior led the rushing attack. He rolled up 159 yards on the ground. He scored on runs measuring 71, 3 and 25 yards. Apke also raced into the end zone on a 49-yard scamper. Alex Englert ran for a 12-yard TD. Rob Costantino converted all the extra points.
In Peters, Lebo confronts a strong line and the 1-2 punch of Cory Owen and Marcus Ubinger. The pair proved a winning combination for the Indians against Plum.
Against the Mustangs, Owen racked up 113 yards rushing; Ubinger, 116. Ubinger ran for TDs of 18, 4 and 40 yards while Owen rolled into the end zone on a 43-yard ramble. Owen also completed a 2-point conversion pass to Max Augenstein.
“Cory is an outstanding athlete. He can throw and he can run,” said Melnyk. “He is the linchpin to their offense.
“Their running back (Ubinger) is solid, too. He can run the ball.
“They have a couple weapons that can put the pressure on you and force you to make plays,” Melnyk continued. “They are big and strong up front. They are very physical. With them, you can’t sit back. You have to attack.”
PT attacked Plum from all angles. Chris Phelps blocked a punt and recovered in the end zone for a safety while Sean Harrison and Matt Waigand kicked extra points to complete the scoring.
Woodland Hills at CM
After dropping a 49-7 decision to Mt. Lebanon, Canon-McMillan hosts Woodland Hills in a Southeastern Conference clash.
The Wolverines are 4-0 after losing their first two games of the season to Upper St. Clair and McKeesport. They are coming off a 42-21 win over Baldwin. The game was tied, 14-14, before WH rolled up four unanswered scores.
Miles Sanders is the Wolverines’ premier player. He rushed for 235 yards and three scores against the Highlanders. He ranks among the top rusher in the WPIAL with 857 yards and 11 TDs.
For the Big Macs, who dropped to 1-5 overall and 1-4 in the league, Alec Hutchin registered the lone touchdown. Named Homecoming King at halftime, Hutchin scored on a 12-yard run in the final frame. Luke Starcevic kicked the extra point.
SF at Riverside
South Fayette takes a break from Century Conference action and league opponents are rejoicing that the Lions are visiting Riverside for a 7 p.m. exhibition Oct. 11.
The Lions are undefeated in conference action after they raised their record to 6-0 with a decisive victory over Quaker Valley, 49-15. It was the second week in a row that SF whipped an undefeated opponent. Previously, the Lions dispatched Seton-La Salle, 45-3. Both SLS and QV now trail the Lions in the standings and are 5-1 overall.
Quaker Valley was just another example of SF’s dominance. The Lions are averaging 51.7 points per game while allowing just 7.7 tallies an outing.
After a slow start, leading only by one score after one quarter, SF exploded for 28 points in the second stanza, assuring the Mercy Rule in the second half.
On a night when his brother’s TD record fell, Brett Brumbaugh completed 15 of 24 passes for 290 yards and three scores. He connected with Justin Watson for scoring strikes of 29, 39 and 34 yards.
Brumbaugh’s brother, Christian had tossed a WPIAL record 88 TDs before heading off to William and Mary. Christian also threw for a district record 7,162 career yards. Sto-Rox quarterback Lenny Williams broke the TD mark with three scoring passes in a 56-14 win over Union. Williams is poised to break the yardage mark this week. He tied the tally against Union.
Meanwhile, Watson proved Brumbaugh’s top target against the Quakers. He had five receptions for 154 yards. For the season, Watson has 626 yards receiving. The Penn recruit has scored 10 touchdowns.
A junior, Brumbaugh could bring the records back to South Fayette. He already has passed for 1,251 yards and 15 scores this fall. After a freshman season where he completed 48 of 76 aerials for 619 yards and seven scores, Brumbaugh passed for 2,823 yards and 37 TDs as a sophomore last year.
Also in the win over Quaker Valley, J.J. Walker rushed for scores of 10 and 1 yards. Hunter Hayes also had a 1-yard score while Grant Fetchet charged into the end zone for a 24-yard TD. Fetchet led all rushers with 142 yards. He has gained 723 yards and scored 11 times this season..
SLS at QV
Seton-La Salle continues to follow South Fayette. A week after the Lions knocked off another Century Conference challenger, the Rebels will now visit Quaker Valley for a 7 p.m. clash Oct. 11. Both the Quakers and the Rebels are 5-1 overall, both having suffered big losses to the Lions.
SLS prepped for its latest league challenge by blasting Burgettstown, 46-7. Against the winless Blue Devils, Tyler Perone picked apart the defense for 136 passing yards. He completed 10 of 11 attempts, three of them for touchdowns. Danzel McKinley-Lewis, Kevin Curran and DeQuay Broadwater corralled 18-, 7- and 33-yard scoring strikes. McKinley-Lewis also recovered a fumble for a 5-yard score.
Rick Mellick, Tom Rizza and Brandon Aiello rushed for touchdowns on 35-, 1- and 29-yard runs for the Rebels. Dom DelGreco kicked four extra points.
KO at SA
The Golden Eagles are still looking for their first win of the season.
After falling to South Park, 20-18, Keystone Oaks will visit South Allegheny in Century Conference action. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. Oct. 11. The Gladiators are 1-5 overall and 1-4 in the league.
Despite the loss to the Eagles, there were bright spots for KO. Kobe Phillippi completed 17 of 24 passes for 231 yards. The junior tossed two TD aerials and rushed for one score.
Tyler Chiocca grabbed a 17-yard scoring strike while Braydon Griffiths hauled in a four-yard touchdown. Griffiths had nine receptions for 128 yards.
Ambridge at CV (7 p.m.)
Chartiers Valley slipped to 1-5 overall and 1-4 in the Parkway Conference when the Colts dropped a 38-21 decision to Montour. James Pachis rushed for two touchdowns while Dom Castello pulled in a 13-yard scoring strike from Josh Lapiana in the loss. Castello ranks among the top receivers in the WPIAL with over 25 receptions and a better-than 16-yard average per catch.
California at CH
Chartiers-Houston improved its playoff chances when the Buccaneers edged Carlynton, 16-13, in Black Hills Conference play.
With the win, the Bucs improved to 4-2 in the league and trailed Clairton, Fort Cherry and Monessen, all of whom had 5-1 marks. Overall, CH is 5-2.
In the win over the Cougars, CH exploded for 10, fourth-quarter points. Miles Williamson grabbed a 24-yard scoring strike from Kaleb Susko to cap the comeback. Derek Hull also rushed for a 1-yard TD in the final frame.
After Ted Ford staked the Cougars to a 6-0 lead on a pair of field goals, Mike Cushma cut the margin with his 28-yard field goal in the third stanza. However, Isiah Canton rolled into the end zone for a 10-yard field goal, giving Carlynton a 13-3 advantage heading into the final 12 minutes of action.
The Bucs host California at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11. Cal is 2-3 overall.
Canevin at Clairton
For the second week in a row, Bishop Canevin draws one of the top teams in the Black Hills Conference. The Crusaders visit Clairton, which despite dropping its first game in over four years, remains the four-time defending WPIAL and PIAA champion. Kick-off is 7:30 p.m.
The Bears are 5-1 overall and tied with Fort Cherry and Monessen, the team that ended their 66-game winning streak, for the stop slot in the conference. Meanwhile, the Crusaders slipped to 1-5 overall after dropping a 42-6 decision to the Rangers. In that loss to Fort Cherry, Tyler Reed hauled in a 61-yard scoring strike from Reed Relosky. Sean Fitzgerald had a big night for Canevin as he grabbed seven passes for 38 yards.
Clairton is coming off a 37-13 win over Brentwood. Aaron Mathews rolled up 132 yards rushing and two scores for the Bears.
Military night at PT
When Peters Township hosts Mt. Lebanon Oct. 11 in Southeastern Conference Football action, it will be “Military Appreciation Night.”
Free admission will be granted to all military personnel, retired and active, with proper military or VFW credentials.
The pre-game festivities begin at 7 p.m. when Dana Bowman will parachute into the stadium. A double amputee, Bowman is a retired member of the U.S. Army’s elite parachute team, the Golden Knights. He lost his legs in an accident during training in Yuma, Arizona, in 1994.
After his jump, Bowman will sign autographs near the main entrance of the stadium. He will also participate in the coin toss with another honorary veteran before kickoff at 7:30 p.m.