Class 2A No. 1 Washington takes control early in win over Greensburg Central Catholic

Friday, September 15, 2023 | 11:12 PM

Washington coach Mike Bosnic cracked a smile when reminded of his team’s elevated standing in the WPIAL rankings as the Pennsylvania high school football season nears the halfway point.

The top-ranked Little Prexies have built quite a resume in the first half.

“We actually talked about that this past week,” Bosnic said.

Unbeaten Washington, behind sophomore quarterback Tristan Reed’s 172 yards passing, won for the fourth time to preserve its No. 1 ranking in Class 2A with a 31-7 victory Friday night at Class A Greensburg Central Catholic.

Washington (4-0) entered the year unranked but since has mowed down all its opponents in impressive fashion to vault to the top of the poll.

“In the beginning of the season, a lot of people didn’t have us very high and now, we’re up at the top,” Bosnic said. “We’ve got a target on our chests. That’s why we can’t take anything for granted. We need to just keep working, and I think this group will.”

The slender, 6-foot-4, 160-pound Reed threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to Ruben Gordon with 35 seconds left in the second quarter to give Washington an 18-0 halftime lead.

Zxavian Willis’ 90-yard kickoff return following Greensburg Central Catholic’s only touchdown cemented the outcome after the Centurions closed within 18-7 on Tyree Turner’s 16-yard touchdown pass to Samir Crosby with 11 minutes, 51 seconds remaining.

“That gave us a huge boost and took away any momentum they could have gained,” Bosnic said.

Reed completed his first nine passes and finished 12 for 17 for Washington, which came in having outscored its three previous opponents 115-35, before updating those numbers to 146-42.

“Our kids played hard,” Bosnic said. “Up front, we did some good things. The hope is we’ll keep working to get better. I’m happy with the effort, but we made some mistakes tonight that could really hurt us. (GCC) fought hard and played to the end.”

Washington, which was facing its third Class A opponent, is home to Brentwood on Friday in the Class 2A Century Conference opener.

The Little Prexies saw their ground game sputter early on and relied on Reed’s arm to move the ball.

“Defensively, we did a great job on first and second downs in getting them into third-and-long situations,” Greensburg Central Catholic coach John Thompson said. “We just weren’t there to make the plays on third down. We didn’t make them punt once until the end of the game.”

Percy Dudley’s 9-yard run gave Washington a 6-0 lead in the first quarter. Jahvon Woods added a 1-yard run before Reed connected with Gordon to find the end zone for a pair of second-quarter scores and an 18-0 advantage.

Turner, who completed 13 of 22 passes for 189 yards, found Crosby on a pass in the left corner of the end zone to put GCC (2-2) on the board. But Willis raced through the Centurions nearly the length of the field on the following kickoff to give back the momentum to Washington.

Woods scored the Little Prexies’ final TD on a 3-yard run.

“There were a lot of self-inflicted wounds from our standpoint, offensively, defensively and on special teams,” Thompson said. “A good team like that, well-coached, they’re going to take advantage of that stuff. From an assignment standpoint on technique and fundamentals, they’re correctable mistakes. That’s the encouraging thing about it.”

Greensburg Central Catholic opens its Eastern Conference schedule Friday at home against Springdale.

Tags: ,

More Football

Westmoreland high school notebook: Football rivalry games put on hold this season
Girls flag football catching on at Shaler
Westmoreland high school notebook: Penn-Trafford football to honor newest hall of fame class
Central Catholic QB Payton Wehner wins Willie Thrower Award
What to watch for in WPIAL sports on April 6, 2024: Top WPIAL QB to be honored with Willie Thrower Award