Westmoreland County don’t miss high school football matchups for 2021 Week 9

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Wednesday, October 27, 2021 | 5:03 PM


Class 6A

Norwin (3-6, 1-5) at Hempfield (2-7, 0-6)

7 p.m. Friday, Spartan Stadium, Hempfield

Norwin appeared to keep flickering playoff hopes alive with a 16-7-win last week over Canon-McMillan. Dom Barca ran for 124 yards and scored two touchdowns, including a school-record 95-yard run. Joey Castle kicked a 32-yard field goal for the Knights, who broke a five-game losing streak. But the Knights, even with a win this week, can’t mathematically make the playoffs. This game reunites Norwin assistant Rich Bowen with the team that he used to coach. Bowen was the head coach at Hempfield for nine years. … Hempfield dropped its sixth straight game, allowing a season high for points in a 65-13 loss to No. 3 North Allegheny. It was the most points the Spartans have scored, though, since a 45-27 loss to Canon-McMillan in Week 5. Hempfield beat Norwin last year, 28-14, in Week 3.

Class 5A Big East Conference

4-Gateway (6-3, 3-1) at Franklin Regional (3-6, 2-2)

7 p.m. Friday, Franklin Regional HS Stadium, Murrysville

Gateway can clinch at least a tie for the conference title with a win and a Penn-Trafford loss at Latrobe. The Gators rolled over Connellsville, 55-0, last week, while the Panthers lost to Penn-Trafford, 49-7. Gateway QB Brad Birch completed 10 of 14 passes for 224 yards and touchdown passes to four different receivers. He also ran for a score. … Franklin Regional running back Zach Bewszka rushed for 69 yards and scored on a 10-yard run against Penn-Trafford. The Panthers’ defense had trouble slowing down the Warriors.

2-Penn-Trafford (7-2, 4-0) at Latrobe (3-6, 1-3)

7:15 p.m. Friday, Memorial Stadium, Latrobe

Penn-Trafford looks to maintain a top position in the upcoming WPIAL playoffs by clinching the conference title. The Warriors scored on their first six possessions against Franklin Regional and rolled 49-7. Warriors quarterback Carter Green completed 9 of 13 passes for 135 yards and three touchdowns. Cade Yacamelli rushed for 107 yards and two touchdowns. … Latrobe led Woodland Hills, 17-14, through three quarters but allowed an interception return for a score and a long run in a 26-17 loss that eliminated the Wildcats from playoff contention. Latrobe QB Bobby Fetter ran for a touchdown and hit Chase Sickenberger on a 19-yard touchdown passes. He also ran for two scores and rushed for 95 yards.

Class 4A Greater Allegheny Conference

Greensburg Salem (5-4, 3-3) at Plum (2-7, 2-4)

7 p.m. Friday, at Plum Mustangs Stadium, Plum Borough

Plum clinches a spot in the WPIAL postseason with a win Friday against Greensburg Salem. The Mustangs have split their last four games, beating Highlands and Knoch and falling to Hampton and Armstrong. Plum sophomore quarterback Sean Franzi threw two touchdowns against Armstrong, giving him seven for the season against just two interceptions. Eryck Moore added a rushing score against the River Hawks, and he has eight such TDs through eight games to go along with 801 yards. … Greensburg Salem has lost three of four after a 4-1 start. The Golden Lions, tied for third place in the conference with Highlands and Indiana, also clinch a playoff spot with a win at Plum. Greensburg Salem was doubled up last week against Highlands, 40-20. Hayden Teska threw for 251 yards and three touchdowns against the Golden Rams. Two of the TD passes went to Cody Rubrecht.

Class 3A Interstate Conference

5-Mt. Pleasant (5-3, 3-1) at South Allegheny (3-6, 3-2)

7 p.m. Friday, South Allegheny Stadium, Glassport

Ground-and-pound Mt. Pleasant clinched a WPIAL playoff berth with a thorough 28-6 win over South Park as Robbie Labuda ran for 100 yards on 20 carries. Aaron Alakson scored two touchdowns and Ian Hutter and Labuda added one apiece. The Vikings have won three of their last four games. They are averaging 38.4 points per game in their five wins. … South Allegheny won three of four heading into Week 8 but dropped a 27-14 decision to visiting Deer Lakes. Still, the Gladiators remain in contention for a playoff spot. South Allegheny, led by running back Kavan Markwood (440 yards), is averaging 22.4 points and allowing 21.2.

Southmoreland (6-3, 3-2) at South Park (2-6, 2-3)

7 p.m. Friday, Eagles Stadium, South Park

A playoff berth could be on the line for the winner of this game. Both teams are coming off tough conference losses. Southmoreland fell to first-place Elizabeth Forward, 56-13, and South Park fell to second-place Mt. Pleasant, 28-6. A three-way tie could occur between Southmoreland, South Park and South Allegheny with Gardner Points deciding to the two playoff teams. The Scotties got off to a good start against EF as J.J. Bloom caught a 25-yard touchdown pass on the first drive of the game, and then returned a kickoff 88 yards for a score for a short-lived 13-7 lead. Southmoreland’s defense gave up too many big plays to the conference champions. … South Park had trouble getting started at Mt. Pleasant, falling behind 28-0. QB Harper Conroy completed 12 of 20 passes for 142 yards, and Adam Johnson scored on a 37-yard run for the Eagles.

Yough (1-8, 1-4) at 3-Elizabeth Forward (7-2, 5-0)

7 p.m. Friday, Warrior Stadium, Elizabeth

Elizabeth Forward clinched the conference title last week by defeating Southmoreland, 56-13, and will be trying to earn a good seed for the upcoming playoffs. Yough, despite missing a few key players because of suspension, earned its first win of the season by defeating Brownsville, 49-26. The Cougars, though, have been eliminated from playoff contention. Freshman quarterback Raidon Kuroda rushed for 55 yards and two touchdowns, and completed 7 of 10 passes for 84 yards and a touchdown for the Cougars. Sophomore running back Shane Swope Jr. scored three times, one on a 85-yard kickoff return, and rushed for 148 yards for Yough. Gavin Roebuck also scored twice in the win. … EF was led by Zach Boyd, who scored four touchdowns and finished with four catches for 192 yards.

Class 3A Allegheny Seven Conference

Derry (0-8, 0-4) at 2-North Catholic (9-0, 5-0)

7 p.m. Friday, Mars Athletic Complex, Mars

Coming off a turbulent week, Derry remained winless with a 43-13 loss to Burrell. Head coach Vince Skillings was dismissed last week for undisclosed reasons, and athletic director Brett Miller joined the coaching staff. Mason Beeman caught a 34-yard scoring pass from Zack Revoir, who returned from injury. Damari Robinson added a 48-yard touchdown run for the Trojans, who are allowing 53.4 points a game. … North Catholic has a powerful offense led by quarterback Joey Prentice, but the Trojans can play some defense. They have allowed a WPIAL-low 38 points and have posted six shutouts. Prentice threw for 151 yards and three touchdowns, and Robbie Kress had a pick-six in last week’s 33-7 win at Freeport.

Class 2A Allegheny Conference

Apollo-Ridge (2-7, 1-3) at Ligonier Valley (7-2, 2-2)

7 p.m. Friday, Weller Field, Ligonier

A playoff berth could be on the line for the winner of this game. Apollo-Ridge needs a win and some help to get into the playoff picture. A Ligonier Valley win could give the Rams a favorable seeding in the playoffs. Apollo-Ridge is coming off consecutive losses to Serra and Steel Valley. Ligonier Valley held on to defeat Shady Side Academy, 26-25, despite allowing touchdowns on a kickoff return, a fumble return and an interception return. Apollo-Ridge has been banged up this season. Nick Curci has scored 10 touchdowns, but didn’t play last week. Curci has 19 catches for 299 yards and also 530 rushing yards. Landon Harmon rushed for 87 yards and a score against Steel Valley. … Ligonier Valley running back Nick Beitel has scored nine touchdowns. Haden Sierocky rushed for 126 yards and two scores against Shady Side Academy, while Broderick Schreyer tossed two touchdown passes. The defense stopped SSA on a two-point conversion with 24 seconds left.

Class A Eastern Conference

Jeannette (1-8, 1-5) at 1-Clairton (6-2, 6-0)

7 p.m. Friday, Neil C. Brown Stadium, Clairton

Jeannette dropped its fifth game in a row and takes an 0-4 road mark into one of the WPIAL’s toughest venues. This is a WPIAL title game rematch from last season when Jeannette rolled past the Bears, 45-14. That was before a number of players transferred to neighboring schools. Senior quarterback Tyler Horn has played through pain as he deals with a meniscus injury. Running back Antonio Clark has been active in the backfield. Mitchell Steele kicked another field goal last week in the Jayhawks’ 49-3 loss to Greensburg Central Catholic. … Clairton’s sixth win a row was tough sledding as the Bears only beat Springdale, 12-0. Capone Jones and Christian Wade scored on touchdown runs. Wade had 125 yards rushing on eight carries. The Bears are yielding just 9.7 points per game against conference teams.

Leechburg (7-2, 4-2) at 4-Greensburg C.C. (6-3, 4-2)

7 p.m. Friday, Centurion Stadium, Carbon

It’s a breakthrough season for Leechburg. The Blue Devils are finally back in the WPIAL playoffs after a clinching win last week over Imani Christian. Leechburg won 66-6 as running back Braylan Lovelace scored seven touchdowns. He ran 32 times for 183 yards. The Blue Devils scored 71 points against Riverview. They lead Class A with 47 points per game. … Greensburg Central Catholic won at Jeannette for the first time since 2009, establishing the run on the way to a 49-3 victory. Jaydin Canady, a Jeannette transfer, ran for 191 yards and scored four touchdowns, including a 90-yard run and a 72-yard punt return. Quarterback Tyree Turner also ran for three scores as GCC locked up a playoff spot.

Monessen (3-6, 2-4) at Avella (1-8, 1-5)

7 p.m. Friday, Avella Area Stadium, Avella

Monessen has lost four straight following a three-game winning streak. The Greyhounds, who battled low numbers last season but seemed to recover, were shut out for the first time last week, 23-0 against California. The Greyhounds had productive possessions but turned the ball over on downs three times in the second half and had a punt blocked for a touchdown. They lost two fumbles and were intercepted twice in the first half. … Avella defeated Bentworth in Week 7 but fell to Carmichaels last week 63-22. The Eagles are averaging 10.2 points and allowing 39.3.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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