Trib HSSN Football Player of the Week for 2022 Week 8

Sunday, October 23, 2022 | 5:12 PM

With every game he plays, Armstrong quarterback Cadin Olsen continues to climb the ladder of all-time great quarterbacks from the WPIAL.

Two weeks ago, Olsen passed the 6,000-yard mark for his scholastic career.

After big conference showdown wins over Mars and Highlands, Olsen has eclipsed 7,100 yards at Armstrong after throwing for a combined 780 yards in the two wins over the Fightin’ Planets and Golden Rams.

Olsen went over the 2,000 yards passing for the season in the win over Mars. Now, after his epic game against Highlands (447 yards, 5 TDs), he has thrown for 2,476 yards for his senior season.

Olsen, however, wants the focus more on the River Hawks’ 8-1 record then the mind numbing stats he’s producing.

“We haven’t had a year like this at Armstrong in a long time,” Olsen said. “We really know the kind of potential we have and we can make a run in the playoffs, for sure. I really don’t care about the stats, if we win the game, we win the game and that’s all that matters.”

In Friday’s big showdown at undefeated Highlands, Olsen and his River Hawks teammates started out with a bang in the opening quarter.

Olsen connected with junior wide receiver Isaiah Brown on scoring passes of 18 and 28 yards and Armstrong jumped out to an early 14-0 lead.

“We went all week putting a good game plan together,” Olsen said. “They (Highlands) showed us a lot of things on tape defensively so it showed us what we might get and we had a lot of options.”

The Rivers Hawks’ offense never slowed down, scoring 14 points in each of the four quarters with Olsen throwing another touchdown pass to Brown in the third quarter, two scoring passes to younger brother Ian Olsen, a sophomore wide receiver, and the senior quarterback even scoring one himself on a 1-yard plunge.

The win gave Armstrong the Class 4A Greater Allegheny Conference championship. The River Hawks host Kiski Area on Friday to close out the season before preparing for a tough 4A playoff bracket that will include three undefeated teams heading into Week 9 — Aliquippa, Central Valley and McKeesport.

“I think if we continue to have good weeks of practice and preparation, we can be a contender for some of these bigger teams and maybe pull off some upsets,” Olsen said. “I think we’ll be ready.”

WPIAL Week 8 Honorable Mentions

Joey Mayer and Borck Borgo – Hampton

After losing a heartbreaker two weeks ago to North Catholic in overtime, Hampton needed a pick-me-up heading into a must-win game for its postseason hopes in Week 8 at Mars. A solid one-two punch of the return of senior Joey Mayer at quarterback and the strong play of junior Brock Borgo at running back was the perfect mix for the Talbots and toxin for the Fightin’ Planets.

Mayer connected on 13 of 24 passes for 354 yards and four touchdowns while Borgo carried the ball 31 times for 208 yards and two touchdowns as the Talbots stayed alive in the 4A Greater Allegheny Conference with a 49-42 win over Mars.

Nick Curci – Apollo-Ridge

When Apollo-Ridge lost to Imani Christian in Week 6 for its fourth loss in five weeks, it appeared the Vikings would play the role of spoiler in the stretch run and would end up being spectators come district playoff time in November. However, a stone cold stunner delivered to the defending 2A champs in Week 8 has changed all of that.

Playing with a banged up shoulder, senior running back and linebacker Nick Curci carried the ball 51 times and rushed for 338 yards and five touchdowns on runs of 2, 14, 3, 2 and his game-winning 2-yard run in overtime, plus he had 10 tackles on defense in helping Apollo-Ridge stay alive for a playoff berth with a thrilling win over visiting Serra Catholic, 43-36.

Alec Anderson, Carmichaels

Carmichaels entered its Week 8 trip to Bentworth knowing a victory would clinch a Class A Tri-County South Conference playoff berth. Senior quarterback Alec Anderson wanted to make sure the Mighty Mikes would seal the deal on a postseason berth with an exclamation point.

Anderson completed 16 of 23 passes for 356 yards and four touchdowns on scoring tosses of 20, 30 and 65 yards to senior wide out Tyler Richmond and a 24-yard TD to sophomore wide receiver Brandon Yekel as the Mighty Mikes cruised past the Bearcats and into the playoffs, 48-14.

2022 HSSN Players of the Week

Week 7 – Roman Sarnic, Franklin Regional

Week 6 – Landan Stevenson, Mapletown

Week 5 – Jake Wolfe, Montour

Week 4 – Jaren Brickner, Beaver Falls

Week 3 – Jake Phillips, Hempfield

Week 2 – Luke Cignetti, Shaler

Week 1 – Cruce Brookins, Steel Valley

Week Zero – Conlan Greene, Penn-Trafford

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