What to watch for in WPIAL sports on April 6, 2024: Top WPIAL QB to be honored with Willie Thrower Award

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Friday, April 5, 2024 | 11:17 PM


The top quarterback in the WPIAL from the 2023 season will be honored Saturday afternoon at the fourth annual Willie Thrower Award ceremony.

The winner will be one of the six finalists that were chosen by a panel of voters that include a coach from each of the 17 WPIAL conferences and the City League along with scholastic media members.

This year’s winner will be the third recipient of a 29-pound replica of the Willie Thrower statue that is outside of the stadium at Valley High School.

Thrower was the NFL’s first Black quarterback in 1953 with the Chicago Bears.

Before that, he was a standout player at Michigan State and New Kensington High School.

The two previous winners of the award were Cole Spencer of Pine-Richland and Cadin Olsen of Armstrong twice.

The six finalists this year are Nolan DiLucia of Peters Township. Julian Dugger of Penn Hills, Logan Kushner of North Allegheny, Matt Sieg of Fort Cherry, Payton Wehner of Central Catholic and Jake Wolfe of Montour.

DiLucia, Kushner and Sieg led their teams to WPIAL championships in the 2023 season.

Aliquippa coach Mike Warfield will be the featured speaker at the luncheon.

The event takes place at the Knead Community Café in New Kensington and can be viewed here on Trib HSSN at noon.

Weekend make-goods

A week of wet weather has made the Saturday diamond schedule busier than usual.

There are nearly 20 WPIAL baseball section games set for Saturday, including two 5A doubleheaders.

Fox Chapel (1-1, 2-2) hosts Penn Hills (0-2, 0-2) at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. while Franklin Regional (2-0, 4-3) visits Gateway (0-0, 0-4) at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.

There is one other makeup game in the same section Saturday afternoon as Penn-Trafford (2-1, 4-1) looks to sweep as it hosts Armstrong (0-3, 1-3) in their section series finale. The Warriors beat the River Hawks on Friday, 9-2.

Flying the coup

Two district softball teams picked a good time to escape the cold and wet conditions around Western Pa. to get some games in at the Ripken Experience in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

Following its first loss of the season on Friday, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (2-1) will face Atherton, Ky., at 11 a.m.

Burgettstown (2-3) is also coming off a loss Friday as it takes on Rockcastle County, Ky. , also at 11 a.m.

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