Westmoreland County high school football notes: Franklin Regional to rotate QBs
Thursday, August 26, 2021 | 6:07 PM
The quarterback competition at Franklin Regional will remain just that as it stretches into the regular season.
New coach Lance Getsy plans to rotate a pair of quarterbacks in Friday night’s season opener against visiting Plum as he looks for a firm starter.
Junior Roman Sarnic and senior Connor Donnelly could share snaps until one outdoes the other, Getsy said.
And don’t count out a third name in the competition, which began earlier in the summer. Junior Logan Donnelly, Connor’s brother, also could figure in at the position.
Each signal-caller brings something different to the offense.
Getsy, who takes over for longtime coach Greg Botta, said his plan is to have all three ready to go all season.
“I am comfortable with all three,” he said. “But it will be a week-to-week decision for the unforeseeable future.”
Another local quarterback competition has been settled, at least for Week Zero.
Jeannette will go with sophomore Payton Molter, who had been trading reps with senior Tyler Horn, on Friday at East Allegheny.
Horn will likely see the field at a different spot.
After last season, nobody thought anyone but Brad Birch would be throwing passes for the Jayhawks, but, as the team can attest, a lot can happen in a year.
“We like his leadership role,” Jeannette coach Roy Hall said of Molter. “He takes charge of the offense and seems pretty confident.”
Hempfield and Derry also had an ongoing battle for the Week Zero starter.
Hempfield is going with junior Jake Phillips on Friday at home against Greensburg Salem. Phillips was the obvious successor to Christian Zilli coming into the season because of his varsity experience last year. But Phillips was getting pressure from sophomore Kieran Lippmann during the summer.
Brothers Zack and Blake Revoir — a senior and freshman — were competing to start under center at Derry. The competition was settled at Wednesday’s practice when Blake won the starting nod when the Trojans travel to Latrobe on Friday.
Zack will likely play another offensive spot. He was a running back last season.
“The youngster doesn’t let much get under his skin,” Skillings said. “We’ve blitzed him and dropped 5-under coverage — as much as we could think of to rattle him — and he persevered. He’s a special player.”
And at Penn-Trafford, senior Carter Green will start at quarterback Friday at Norwin but could be spelled by junior Tommy Kalkstein. Warriors coach John Ruane said the team plans to utilize both players in some capacity, similar to how he played Ethan Carr and Gabe Dunlap a few years ago.
“We want to have both of them on the field,” Ruane said.
Friday’s Monessen at Washington game will be played at a different site. Canon-McMillan will host the opening game due to a lighting issue at Washington. Kickoff remains 7 p.m.
A year away
Many teams did not get to play familiar opponents in the first two weeks of last season due to covid-shortened schedules. That includes rivals Penn-Trafford and Norwin, who will reunite Friday in North Huntingdon.
The teams are anxious to see one another again — and to deal the other an uppercut.
“We are excited to play Norwin. It should be a great game,” Penn-Trafford linebacker Jack Jollie said. “We had a glimpse of them this summer at the Westmoreland 7-on-7 (tournament), but now we are ready to take the real field. I believe pure desire to win will decide this game.”
Line of scrimmage
Not all local teams are opening the season with a game Friday. One Westmoreland team will have a second scrimmage, as has become customary in its program. Belle Vernon will travel to play West Allegheny on Friday night.
Leopards coach Matt Humbert sees a second scrimmage as an evaluation opportunity — like an NFL preseason game.
“It allows us a better opportunity to evaluate some different kids at different positions,” Humbert said.
One name is noticeably missing at Yough this season. Sophomore Terek Crosby, a wide receiver and defensive back who made a splash last year carrying the ball for the Cougars, did not come out for the team.
Yough coach Chris Chunko said Crosby is focusing his attention on basketball.
Hot Rod coming to Southmoreland
Southmoreland fans will get a chance to see Laurel Highlands star Rodney Gallagher up close. That is because next Friday’s game that was originally scheduled to be played at Laurel Highlands was moved to Russ Grimm Field. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .
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