Trib 10: Top 5 teams in power rankings taking their shot at state gold

Wednesday, December 6, 2023 | 7:17 PM

For the second time in PIAA football championship history, the WPIAL is sending five teams to the state finals.

In 2021, four WPIAL teams won state gold: Mt. Lebanon in 6A, Penn-Trafford in 5A, Aliquippa in 4A and Central Valley in 3A captured PIAA crowns while Serra Catholic was the 2A runner-up.

This fall, five District 7 champions won their semifinals last week to advance to the state title game: North Allegheny for the first time in 11 years in 6A, Peters Township for the first time in 5A, Aliquippa for a third straight year in 4A, defending PIAA champion Belle Vernon in 3A and first-time participant Fort Cherry in A.

Only 2A district winner Beaver Falls lost in the state semifinals as the Tigers fell to City League champion Westinghouse. The Bulldogs will face defending champion Southern Columbia for a second straight season.

Aliquippa continues to shine in the power rankings, sitting at No. 1 for a ninth straight week.

Here are the next-to-last Trib 10 power rankings for 2023 with record, last week’s ranking and opponent in Week 15. These rankings have zero classification boundaries.

1. Aliquippa, 13-0, (1): The Quips play Dallas in the 4A state championship game on Thursday

2. Peters Township, 15-0, (2): The Indians play Imhotep Charter in the 5A state championship game on Friday

3. North Allegheny, 13-1, (3): The Tigers play St. Joseph’s Prep in the 6A state championship game on Saturday

4. Belle Vernon, 12-1, (4): The Leopards play Northwestern Lehigh in the 3A state championship game on Saturday

5. Fort Cherry, 15-0, (5): The Rangers play Steelton-Highspire in the A state championship game on Thursday

6. McKeesport, 11-2, (7): The Tigers’ season is over

7. Central Catholic, 10-2, (8): The Vikings’ season is over

8. Pine-Richland, 9-4, (9): The Rams’ season is over

9. Montour, 10-2, (10): The Spartans’ season is over

10. Beaver Falls, 9-6, (6): The Tigers’ season is over

Out: None

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