A-K Valley represented at WPIAL championships at Heinz Field

Monday, December 6, 2021 | 10:56 AM

Though no Alle-Kiski Valley teams made it to Heinz Field for this year’s finals, there was still representation related to the Class 5A game.

Bruce Crivaro of Lower Burrell, a Valley High School graduate, was on the officiating crew for the game between Penn-Trafford and Moon. He was joined on the field by Oakmont’s Lee Patton.

Singing the national anthem before the game was Kiski Area senior Bryant Brzozowski, who belted out a great rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Not only are there outstanding officials in the Valley area, but Kiski Area long has been the go-to school for musical talent.

Mia Zanottti of Hyde Park, better known as “Mia Z,” had a run on NBC’s “The Voice” in 2015, and the award-winning high school band was featured in a 1969 Newsweek magazine piece.

Before that, Bell-Avon High School, a Kiski Area predecessor school, produced Jill Corey, a singer featured on NBC’s “Your Hit Parade” in 1957 at age 22.

She suspended her career while she was married to former Pirates third baseman Don Hoak from 1961 until Hoak’s death in 1969.

Two openings

After an offseason when there were no head football coaching changes for the first time in 11 years and only the second time in 39 seasons, there are already two local vacancies.

Valley’s Muzzy Colosimo retired right after the season, and Knoch will not be bringing back Brandon Mowry.

More changes could be coming. But for now, the New Kensington-Arnold and the South Butler school boards will seat new members and reorganize within the next few days. Then the coaching searches will begin in earnest.

Quips now No. 2

While Aliquippa is celebrating its 18th WPIAL football title, its ardent fans have something else to cheer.

Recently, the school passed New Castle for the No. 2 spot among WPIAL football wins.

The win over Belle Vernon Saturday was the 755th in school history. New Castle is now third with 751.

The all-time leader is still Jeannette with 767 wins despite its rare, struggling 2021 campaign.


It’s usually not good to play a game of what if.

But with Hampton starting 11-0 for only the second time in school’s 76 seasons and Pine-Richland making the Class 5A semifinals after a slow start, one can wonder what kind of team they would have if the schools were merged as originally planned.

On Dec. 17, 1962, Allegheny County proposed consolidating the Pine-Richland and Hampton school districts.

Both were basically sparsely populated, rural districts at the time, and both successfully fought to stay separate.

Had they merged, it currently would be the third largest WPIAL football school behind North Allegheny and Seneca Valley.

Could you imagine how good a team would be with Pine-Richland’s Jalen Klemm and Jacob Domer blocking for Hampton’s Christian Liberto and Brock Borgo?

All-time records

With the WPIAL football season coming to a close, here is a list of Alle-Kiski Valley schools and their all-time records:

School, Year started, 2021 record, All-time record

Apollo-Ridge, 1969, 2-7, 226-283-9

Burrell, 1964, 3-8, 293-269-9

Deer Lakes, 1969, 4-6, 175-321-9

Fox Chapel, 1961, 5-7, 226-363-8

Freeport, 1922, 6-5, 568-386-46

Highlands, 1968, 7-4, 275-254-7

Kiski Area, 1962, 6-4, 310-290-7

Knoch, 1956, 2-8, 305-317-13

Leechburg, 1919, 9-3, 409-517-38

Plum, 1940, 3-8, 338-424-7

Riverview, 1971, 1-8, 260-254-11

Springdale, 1926, 7-5, 425-474-30

Valley, 1967, 2-8, 266-261-9

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