Big 33, East-West all-star football games canceled

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Tuesday, April 14, 2020 | 10:25 AM


Organizers for the Big 33 Football Classic and East-West Game hoped the annual all-star games could be played over Memorial Day weekend.

On Tuesday, those plans were canceled.

Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association executive director Garry Cathell announced both all-star games and the events surrounding them will not be held in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Due to the uncertainty of the weeks ahead with the coronavirus constraints placed upon each individual, our schools, families and the organizations and businesses that help make this holiday weekend one of the best in the country, we cannot move forward in holding these events or our exciting football games,” Cathell said in a statement. “Our top priority is the health, safety and welfare of all of our participants, families, workers, sponsors and fans.”

The weekend festivities also were to include a PSFCA High School Combine, USA Football 1st Down Clinic, Military Murph Competition and the Big 33 Fan Experience.

This year’s Big 33 game was set for May 25 at Central Dauphin’s Landis Field in Harrisburg.

Ten WPIAL football players were selected to compete for the Pennsylvania team, which was to play a team of Maryland all-stars.

WPIAL representatives were Thomas Jefferson teammates Logan Danielson and Mac Duda; Peters Township’s Josh Casilli; Penn Hills’ Aakeem Snell; Hempfield’s Cole Graham; Blackhawk’s Marques Watson-Trent; Gateway’s Tui Brown; Central Catholic’s Gus Sunseri; Baldwin’s Naseer Penn; and Pine-Richland’s Levi Wentz.

Michael Petrof of WPIAL newcomer Ligonier Valley also was selected. North Hills coach Pat Carey was an assistant for Pennsylvania.

The 19th annual PSFCA East-West Game was scheduled for May 24, also at Landis Field.

The West team featured Seneca Valley’s Gabe Lawson, Evan Smith and Kevin Meeder; Baldwin’s Mason Stahl; McKeesport’s Devari Robinson; North Allegheny’s Luke Colella, Amosis Porter Jr. and Ben Grafton; Central Valley’s Michael Barbuto; Thomas Jefferson’s Daniel Deabner and Shane Stump; Montour’s George Padezanin; Central Catholic’s Ameer and Amaar Allen; Woodland Hills’ Thomas Jeremie and Rodney Stubbs; Bethel Park’s Brandon Cole and Jehvonn Lewis; Pine-Richland’s Trent Miller; Franklin Regional’s Justin Johns; East Allegheny’s Tyler Padezan; and Penn Hills’ Dylan Bennett.

Ligonier Valley’s Christian Jablonski also was selected.

Latrobe’s Jason Marucco was an assistant coach.

“Our best wishes go out to all graduating student-athletes across this great Commonwealth and our country who are now unable to finish their high school careers as planned,” Cathell said. “May these families, coaches, volunteers, schools and communities remember the significant contributions made and embrace all of the memorable athletic moments that live on, as we all team up to combat this pandemic.”

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@tribweb.com or via Twitter @TribHSInsider.

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