High school notebook: Options growing for Penn-Trafford Gay IV
Saturday, January 20, 2018 | 9:53 PM
One of the top rushers in Westmoreland County is in no rush to make his college decision.
John Gay IV, a football standout at Penn-Trafford, has drawn additional recruiting attention since his senior season ended and has more options to ponder.
“That's not a bad thing at all,” said Gay, a running back and defensive back. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity so I'm just trying to let it play out.”
Gay recently visited the Air Force Academy, where he has an offer to play, and last week was offered a scholarship by Robert Morris, whose new coaches are making their rounds in the county.
Behind a senior-led line, Gay rushed for 1,285 yards and 19 touchdowns last season and helped Penn-Trafford reach the WPIAL Class 5A title game at Heinz Field.
He also has Division I offers from Navy, Howard, and Cornell, and Division II offers from Saginaw Valley State and Seton Hill.
“More schools are becoming interested, and I have more visits to take,” Gay said. “So nothing is out of the question.”
Two more schools have entered the race to get Norwin junior safety Jayvon Thrift. Bowling Green and Robert Morris reached out to Thrift this week, giving him eight Division I offers.
His others are from Pitt, West Virginia, Syracuse, Toledo, Temple and Buffalo.
Thrift has an entire senior season ahead and appears to be taking the process as it comes.
“Right now,” he said, “I am open to everything.”
Thrift had 79 tackles last season and scored seven touchdowns on offense.
More county recruiting
Jeannette junior Anthony Johnson had a breakthrough season playing football for the first time since middle school. Now his recruiting is beginning to take shape. The 6-foot-5, 220-pound defensive end received his first Division I offer, from Howard.
Howard's innovative offensive coordinator is Brennan Marion, a Greensburg Salem graduate. Marion's “Go-Go” offense, with unique formations out of the spread, produced 446 yards and 30 points a game last season.
Howard has offered a number of local prospects, including Jeannette's Robert Kennedy.
Johnson had 99 1⁄2 tackles, five sacks and seven forced fumbles for Jeannette, the WPIAL and PIAA champion in Class A.
• Robert Morris offered kicker Ethan Slike of Greensburg Central Catholic.
• Ligonier Valley football standout Jackson Daughery was offered by Lock Haven.
Penn-Trafford senior WR/DB will further his playing career at Geneva.
• Belle Vernon football player Logan Petrosky, a senior 6-foot-2, 275-pound lineman, has an offer from West Liberty.
• Norwin senior Carson Shipley committed to run track and cross country at John Carroll.
• Penn-Trafford senior soccer player Josh Konkus will further his playing career at Geneva.
• Latrobe football Payton Feathers, a wide receiver and safety, will play at Saint Vincent.
• Latrobe senior running back/defensive back Iven Etienne has an offer to play at NAIA Cincinnati Christian.
The PIHL will host four all-star hockey games next Sunday at Robert Morris Island Sports Center.
Westmoreland County will be well-represented by 20 players and two coaches.
The Class AA Blue team features Mathieu Silva (So., F), Thomas Rafferty (Sr. D), Ethan Yohe (Sr. D), and Daniel Soltesz (Jr. GK) of Franklin Regional; JT Schimizzi (Sr. F) and Brantley Miller (Sr., F) of Latrobe; Jared Gerger (Jr. F), Trent Grey (Sr. D) and Nolan Ferree (Sr. GK) of Hempfield; and Gavin Patrick (Jr. F) of Penn-Trafford. Coaches are Denny Zeravica of Hempfield, and Josh Werner of Latrobe.
The Class A Blue team has Norwin senior Bryce Hegedus (Sr., F), and the White team includes Stephen Kendrish (Sr. F) of Greensburg Central Catholic; Garrison Andolina (Sr., F) of Greensburg Salem; and Austin Lapiana (Sr., F) and Mike Eisaman (Sr. D) of Kiski Area.
The Division II Blue team includes Burrell's Tyler Stewart (So., F), Dylan Zelonka (Jr., F), Logan Schoepf (Fr., F), Bryce Shueler (Jr., D), and Nathan Smith (Jr., D).
The WCCA diving and swimming championships will be Friday and Saturday at Derry. Diving will be Friday, beginning at 5 p.m.
Defending champion Taylor Miller, an Ohio recruit from Latrobe, returns.
The swimming portion is Saturday at 10 a.m.
Defending champions are Franklin Regional (Class AAA girls), Hempfield (AAA boys) and Derry (AA girls and boys).
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .
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