What to watch for in Western Pa. high school sports for Oct. 19, 2023: Football playoffs begin in City League

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Wednesday, October 18, 2023 | 11:56 PM


It’s time for some playoff high school football.

While the WPIAL still has two weeks left in the regular season, the City League concluded its regular season last week and begins the postseason with two semifinals games this weekend.

Before the playoffs even started, there was heavy drama when Allderdice, Brashear and Perry all finished tied for the final two playoff spots behind Westinghouse and University Prep.

Reps from all three tied schools participated in a coin flip for the tiebreaker. Coins for the Allderdice and Perry reps landed on heads and the Brashear coin was tails.

In this case, tails fails.

Now Perry and Allderdice continue their seasons against the two regular season juggernauts in District 8 this season.

On Thursday at Cupples Stadium on the South Side, Perry (1-3) takes on University Prep (3-1).

The Commodores have a long way to go to make up the difference from their first meeting with the Panthers on Sept. 29. University Prep shut out Perry, 70-0.

The Panthers’ Max Qureshi threw for 149 yards and five touchdowns in the runaway victory.

On Friday at Cupples Stadium, defending City League champion and undefeated Westinghouse (4-0) battles Allderdice (1-3) in a rematch of the 2022 City League championship game.

In their first meeting this season Sept. 21, the game was competitive as the Bulldogs beat the Dragons, 20-2.

Ty Abram ran for 84 yards and he and teammate K’Shawn Harkins scored on first-quarter touchdown runs.

The Westinghouse defense limited Allderdice to 45 yards total offense.

In their meeting in the title game a year ago, Westinghouse rolled over Allderdice, 40-8. Bulldogs quarterback Keyshawn Morsillo threw for 154 yards and two touchdowns.

Three for two

Thursday marks the end of the 2023 WPIAL girls volleyball regular season with a handful of playoff berths still up for grabs.

One of the tightest races is in Section 2-3A, where only Oakland Catholic and South Fayette have clinched.

Three teams enter the final night in a three-way tie for third place. Moon, Trinity and Montour all have 5-6 section records.

All three control their own destiny.

Moon visits Trinity with the winner clinching a playoff berth.

Montour is at West Allegheny and can clinch a playoff spot with a victory.

Things get interesting if Montour loses. If the Spartans fall and Trinity loses to Moon, Trinity is in based on the head-to-head tiebreaker. However, if the Spartans lose and Moon loses to Trinity, Montour is in based on head-to-head tiebreaker.

More volleyball scenarios

Only the Class A field with 16 teams is set going into Thursday.

Here are some of the other key matches that will solidify the playoff fields in 4A, 3A and 2A.

• In Section 2-4A, Bethel Park and Mt. Lebanon are tied for fourth place with 3-6 section records. The Black Hawks host Canon-McMillan while the Blue Devils visit Upper St. Clair. If they end up tied, they both qualify for the playoffs after splitting their head-to-head matches this season.

• Besides the above Class 3A scenario between Moon, Trinity and Montour, in Section 1-3A, McKeesport (4-7) is one game behind West Mifflin. The Tigers visit the Titans on Thursday and can clinch with a victory.

• In Section 3-2A, Brownsville (8-7) is one game behind Charleroi for fourth place. If the Falcons beat visiting Waynesburg Central and Charleroi loses to Washington, Brownsville will tie Charleroi and they will both qualify after splitting their head-to-head meetings.

• In Section 4-2A, Central Valley (6-7) is one game behind Hopewell for fourth place. If the Warriors beat host New Brighton and Hopewell loses to Quaker Valley, Central Valley will tie Hopewell and they will both qualify after splitting their head-to-head games.

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