MSA Sports Friday Night HighLights for Week Nine
Saturday, October 29, 2016 | 12:33 PM
Various things were at stake around the WPIAL gridirons on the final Friday of October and the regular season. There were conference championships to be won, home field advantage in the opening round to be signed, sealed and delivered, and of course there were teams just trying to clinch a ride on The Highway to Heinz OR The Road to RMU. Whatever was on the line, these players performed at a high level and helped their team to victory and proving they are ready for some Postseason Primetime.
David Harvey – Mount Lebanon
Bethel Park came out early and grabbed an early lead in a battle for the top spot in the Class 6-A Southeastern Conference. But just when it looked like BP was going to take total control, David Harvey stepped up and Mount Lebanon never looked back. After scoring the tying touchdown, Harvey gathered a fumble and ran 61 yards to the house in a game changing play that added to his busy night which consisted of 207 yards rushing and scoring runs of 1, 5, 1 and 3 yards as the Blue Devils earned a share of the conference championship and first place with a convincing 25-14 victory over the host Black Hawks.
Ethan Maenza – North Allegheny
While Pine-Richland continues to play without their start quarterback Phil Jurkovec who is out for the season, North Allegheny is fortunate to have their star quarterback healthy and going full throttle heading into the postseason. Ethan Maenza connected on 6 of 10 passes for 168 yards and a 51-yard touchdown toss, plus he rushed for 132 yards and scored five times on runs of 25, 25, 1, 30 and 2-yards as the Tigers fell behind early put pulled away from the Rams to the tune of 47-10 to clinch second place in the Northern Seven Conference and a home game next week in the Class 6-A Quarterfinals.
Zane Dudek – Armstrong
Hey look, it’s a rare Zane Dudek sighting. Of course I’m being facetious as the stud senior running back is in Rushel Shell elite status now with so many appearance on the Friday Night HighLights page. His latest tip of the cap comes on the heels of his 242 yards on the ground and three touchdowns on runs of 5, 26 and 20 yards as the River Hawks clinched the Class 5-A Big East Conference championship with a 38-6 triumph over the visiting Kiski Area Cavaliers. Dudek broke the WPIAL single season rushing record and now has 2,940 yards here in 2016.
George Martin – Ringgold
After losing two games in three weeks midway through the season, Ringgold looked like it was facing a win and you’re in game in Week Nine against Trinity in Class 4-A’s Big NIne Conference. However the blue and gold won three in a row, including a finish for the ages win against West Mifflin two weeks ago that helped seal the deal on the playoff berth before the regular season finale. But that didn’t stop Rams quarterback George Martin from enjoying a big night as he hit on 11 of 18 passes for 274 yards and four touchdown tosses of 18, 15, 46 and 17 yards as the Rams cruised to a 34-14 conquest of the visiting Hillers.
Garrett Reinke – Mars
Mars clinched second place in Class 4-A’s Northwest Conference and a home playoff game Friday with a running performance that was, well, out of this world. Garrett Reinke only carried the ball ten times Friday night, but ended up rushing for 247 yards (yes, for all you math majors, that’s a nifty 24.7 yards per carry…duh) and scored a pair of touchdowns on runs of 71 and 57 yards as the host Fighting Planets guaranteed themselves another home game with a 42-14 rout of the Knoch Knights.
Alex Smith – Keystone Oaks
The good news for Seton-LaSalle is that they limited the number of yards rushing for Keystone Oaks quarterback Alex Smith. The bad news is he racked up some good frequent flyer mileage with his right arm and now Seton will be watching KO in the postseason. Smith hit on 26 of 34 passes for 407 yards and and five touchdown passes of 13, 13, 5, 8 and 72 yards as the Golden Eagles flew past the rival Rebels 42-7 to finish with a prefect record in the Class 3-A Allegheny Conference.
Kyle Fitzroy – Apollo-Ridge
What better way to celebrate winning the Pro Grass October football Player of the Month than earning your first spot on the Friday Night HighLights. Apollo-Ridge quarterback Kyle Fitzroy won the vote for the first award on the MSA Sports Network website, then connected on 13 of 21 passes for 327 yards and three first quarter touchdown passes of 83, 8 and 27 yards, plus he scored on a 1-yard scamper as the playoff bound Vikings rolled to a 49-27 win over the host South Allegheny Gladiators in a Class 3-A vs Class 2-A non-conference victory.
DeWayne Murray – Steel Valley
Friday’s game between Steel Valley and Brentwood was billed as a contest for the WPIAL Class 2-A Three Rivers Conference championship. But most people realized shortly after kickoff that hit s was just going to be another one-sided notch in what is looking more and more like a championship belt for the maroon and gold. DeWayne Murray rushed for 219 yards and scored three touchdowns on runs of 1, 5 and 19 yards as the Ironmen remained unbeaten and earned a likely top-seed in the upcoming playoffs with a 56-0 whitewash of the host Spartans.
Maleik Hemingway – Bishop Canevin
On the schedule, the Week Nine game between Bishop Canevin at Carmichaels was nothing more than a Class 1-A non-conference football game in which BC would be on a bus headed south to Greene County for a long time. But at stake in this lengthy road trip was a chance to be home ofr the First Round of the playoffs and Maleik Hemingway and his mates like that ‘home cookin’ idea in the postseason. Hemingway rushed for 276 yards and scored five touchdowns as the Crusaders wiped out an early 13-0 deficit to thump the Mighty Mikes 44-13.
Kenny Robinson – Imani Christian
Talk about your busy days. Earlier on Friday, Imani Christian star quarterback Kenny Robinson announced he would be going to play his college ball at West Virginia. He then goes out in a win and you’re in game and connects on 21 of 28 passes for 446 yards and five first half touchdown tosses of 27, 85, 35, 14 and 4 yards, plus he scored on runs of 5 and 2 yards as the Saints go Marching in to the WPIAL pLayoffs for the first time ever with a convincing 48-7 Class 1-A Eastern Conference victory over the host Leechburg Blue Devils.
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