Scholastic Notebook – 09/07/2012
Friday, September 7, 2012 | 12:44 PM
Sophomores had big games. Players who were their team’s No. 1 running back for the first time did some good things. A receiver turned running back also had a big game. The first weekend of the high school football season was a virtual coming-out party for some. Players introduced themselves to WPIAL football – and they were loud introductions.
The leading rusher on the first weekend of the season was North Catholic’s P.J. Fulmore, a 10th-grader who had 265 yards.
The second-leading rusher was Fort Cherry’s Koltan Kobrys, who played receiver last year. He ran for 250 yards.
Then there was Peters Township’s Mike Minjock. With Andrew Erenberg now graduated, Minjock is Peters Township’s No. 1 running back and he responded with 247 yards rushing.
But there is more to these coming-out parties. Mars’ Josh Schultheis, only a sophomore, had 170 yards as Mars knocked off Franklin Regional. Central Valley sophomore Jordan Whitehead made his first start at running back and ran for 136 yards.
It will be interesting to see if the young runners and new guys can be as productive the second week.
Franklin Regional’s Dane Brown is one of the WPIAL’s top running backs and he recently made his college decision. Brown made a verbal commitment to Cornell University of the Ivy League.
Brown is a 5-foot-7, 185-pound senior who has close to 3,500 yards rushing since his sophomore year. He is an excellent student with a 4.4 grade-point average and is among the top 10 students in Franklin Regional’s senior class.
Cornell must like WPIAL running backs. This is the second year in a row Cornell has landed a top halfback from the WPIAL. Mt. Lebanon’s Luke Hagy is a freshman running back for the Big Red.
Three is Working
You’ve undoubtedly heard over the years how it’s hard for teams to be successful using a two-quarterback system. But Montour has taken things a little further. The Spartans are using three quarterbacks – and the system has been working.
Montour is 2-0 after knocking off Central Valley, 28-27, in overtime in a big WPIAL Class AAA Parkway Conference game Thursday night.
For the second game in a row, Montour coach Lou Cerro used a three-quarterback system, rotating Tynen Greer, Ryan Mihelcic and Max Rosinsky every series, although Greer played the final series in regulation and also the only series in overtime.
But if you put all three of the quarterbacks’ statistics together, they are pretty impressive. So maybe this three-quarterback system could work. All told, the three QBs were 12 of 17 for 206 yards. Mihelcic and Rosinsky each had a pass intercepted. The three also had 86 yards rushing on 18 attempts. That’s almost 300 yards offense.
Greer was excellent in the fourth quarter, moving the Spartans 68 yards in less than two minutes to tie the game, 21-21, with 32 seconds left. Greer scored the tying touchdown on a 4-yard run.
For the game, Greer was 7 of 8 for 113 yards and also ran three times for 13 yards. Mihelcic was 4 of 6 for 86 yards and also ran nine times for 40 yards. Rosinsky only threw twice and completed one for 6 yards, but he also rushed for 33 yards on six attempts.
The significance of their games and the close encounters suggests Montour and Central Valley could be turning into a rivalry.
Thursday night’s contest was the fifth meeting between the two in the past three years (Central Valley opened in 2010). They have met in a WPIAL championship and the WPIAL semifinals. It was the third time in five games the outcome was decided by a touchdown or less.
In 2011, Central Valley won in the regular season, 27-16, while Montour won in the WPIAL semifinals, 21-14.
In 2010, Montour won in the regular season, 12-7. But Central Valley beat Montour for the WPIAL title, 24-7.
Speaking of rivalries, Woodland Hills and Penn Hills have a pretty good rivalry. But the U.S. Marine Corps says Woodland Hills and McKeesport is one of the top rivalries in the country.
Friday night’s McKeesport at Woodland Hills game is one of 67 games in the country this season designated as part of the Great American Rivalry Series, which is sponsored by the Marine Corps. The winning team in the game will get a trophy and a student-athlete from each school will also get a college scholarship.
The U.S. Army All-American Bowl and the Under Armour All-American Game are two all-star games in January that feature the top players in the country. Three WPIAL players will play in the games.
Clairton receiver Tyler Boyd will play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Jan. 5 in San Antonio. It will be televised by NBC.
Central Valley receiver Robert Foster and Belle Vernon offensive lineman Dorian Johnson will play in the Under Armour game in St. Petersburg Jan. 4. It will be televised by ESPN.
Since the start of the All-American Bowl in 2001, Boyd will be the 19th from the WPIAL to play in the game. Some of the others were Jeannette’s Terrelle Pryor, Aliquippa’s Jonathan Baldwin, West Allegheny’s Tyler Palko and Central Catholic’s Stefen Wisniewski.
Spiked with Northern Teams
Section 3 of Class AAAA is always strong in girls volleyball. The section has teams from the Northern suburbs.
Judging from the WPIAL volleyball coaches association’s first rankings of the season, Section 3 is loaded again. North Allegheny is No. 1, Pine-Richland No. 3 and Seneca Valley No. 5. They are all in Section 3.
The Mount Lebanon Invitational last Saturday had some of the best teams in the WPIAL and North Allegheny won the championship over Pine-Richland.
Off and Running
The first big cross country invitational of the year is tomorrow when the Red White & Blue Invitational is held at Schenley Park. A number of the top runners in the WPIAL will compete in the race.
Where Are They Now?
With the WPIAL season getting underway this weekend, the staff at MSA has noticed some more WPIAL players on rosters.
Former Moon offensive lineman A.Q. Shipley made the Indianapolis Colts.
The name of former Penn Hills player Barry Church was mentioned a few times the other night in the Dallas Cowboys-New York Giants game. Church is a safety for the Cowboys.
More Cross Country• After 3rd-place finish at PIAA meet, Riverview bids farewell to decorated senior runners
• Shaler runners build to strong postseason
• North Allegheny’s Mlecko steps into PIAA cross country history books as 4-time team champion
• Future bright for Hampton cross country teams
• Moon’s Mia Cochran named Pennsylvania cross country runner of the year