Trib HSSN Football Team of the Week for Sept. 27, 2021
Monday, September 27, 2021 | 10:25 PM
The Mohawk football team won a combined three games in the last two years.
The Warriors finished 1-6 last fall and 2-9 in the most recent full season in 2019.
So when Mohawk started this year by winning one of its first three games, few paid attention.
Folks are paying attention now.
“We are young and had multiple positional battles all summer,” Mohawk coach Tim McCutcheon said. “We had multiple first-time Friday night players, so it was been beneficial to start the season with three nonconference games.
“We are trying to improve and mature as a team each week. Week Zero was our first look at speed, and we have improved in our ability to contain it, but we will continue to be a work in progress.”
First, there was the upset of previously undefeated Neshannock in the Class 2A Midwestern Athletic Conference opener in Week 3, 15-7.
That was followed up with a big road trip to Oak Hill Field in New Brighton in Week 4. Was McCutcheon worried about a letdown after the Lancers upset win?
“Coaches are always concerned with letdowns following big wins, and this week was no exception for us,” he said. “We were the underdog again versus New Brighton and getting a win at Oak Hill is always difficult. We are trying to focus on us getting better every week more than any other outside concerns.”
Against New Brighton, Mohawk fell behind early, trailing 14-0 in the second quarter.
“When trailing at New Brighton, my only message was for my team to try to relax and play their game,” McCutcheon said. “We have trailed in previous games that we won, so those experiences are always huge. We showed some early game jitters and gave up a big play early.”
Down two scores, the Warriors turned to their quarterback and Voss was boss.
Senior J.C. Voss tossed a 3-yard touchdown pass to junior Jimmy Guerrieri and then scored on a 2-yard run to tie the game by halftime.
“Voss’ performance was certainly a key in our win at New Brighton,” McCutcheon said. “He is a big, strong and tough football player with a big arm and surprising speed. As our quarterback and inside linebacker, he certainly has the ability to impact our games overall with his physicality, which is an emphasis for our team.”
Voss finished hitting on 22 of 31 passes for 224 yards and he led the Warriors in rushing with 70 yards on 17 carries and two touchdowns.
The senior quarterback has led the way, but McCutcheon is quick to point out there have been several key players who have helped Mohawk jump out to the 2-0 start in the MAC.
“Football is the ultimate team sport so any time you have any success, it involves multiple players,” he said. “It always starts up front, and our linemen have greatly contributed while getting better as a unit. Seniors AJ Carnuche and Mark Conti have been big playmakers in all three phases. Boden Leslie, Jimmy Guerrieri, Junior Micco and Luke Kuhn have all played important roles in our early success.”
On Friday, Mohawk returns home and tries to improve to 3-0 when it hosts winless Riverside.
“My thoughts on Riverside are the same every year,” McCutcheon said. “We know they are well coached and tough, and watching their film confirmed that. They are a lot better than their record reflects. We know they will be coming to Mohawk trying to turn their season around, and we know that we will need to battle through four quarters to earn a win.”
2021 HSSN Team of the Week
Week 3 – Union Scotties
Week 2 – McKeesport Tigers
Week 1 – Shaler Titans
Week Zero – Northgate Flames
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