What to watch for in WPIAL sports on Sept. 14, 2023: Union, Shenango set for Thursday night football

Wednesday, September 13, 2023 | 11:33 PM

A busy weekend of conference openers in high school football kicks off with a rare WPIAL Thursday night contest.

Two long-time Lawrence County rivals meet when defending Class A champion Union hosts Shenango in a Big 7 Conference opener.

This marks the 89th encounter between the Scotties and the Wildcats since they first met in 1929.

Since there, there have only been seven years since the two haven’t collided on the football field. This is the 63rd year in a row they have played.

A year ago, Union rolled past host Shenango, 46-7, in Week 3.

This season, both teams are 2-1 in nonconference action.

The Wildcats have won two straight since losing 32-10 to OLSH in Week Zero.

The Scotties won their first two games and then fell 30-14 to Cornell last week.

Senior quarterback Sam Myers threw for 251 yards and three touchdowns in a five-point victory for Shenango over Riverside last week.

Union is led by senior Braylen Thomas, who has 365 passing yards and seven touchdowns while leading the team in rushing with 386 yards and four scores.

Showdown in District 8

A busy two days of high school football at Cupples Stadium on the South Side of Pittsburgh begins with a District 8 showdown Thursday.

Through the first three weeks of the 2023 campaign, City League football teams have a combined overall record of 4-10.

All four wins have come from two teams: Westinghouse and University Prep.

The defending champion Bulldogs are 2-0 after a convincing City League opening win last week against Perry, 52-6.

Khalil Green passed for 174 yards and a touchdown and also scored on a 66-yard run while Khalil Mitchell and Laimon Bates scored two touchdowns each for Westinghouse, which has outscored its two opponents thus far, 80-6.

This will be the City League opener for a University Prep team that beat New Castle and Carrick before losing to Steubenville in Ohio last week, 43-20.

A year ago, Westinghouse rolled past University Prep, 5-12, in Week 3. It was the only time the Bulldogs gave up more than one score to a City League team all year.

On Friday afternoon at 3:30, Allderdice (0-3) hosts Perry (0-1, 0-3), followed by Brashear (0-3) facing Carrick (0-3) in a City League vs. independent matchup.

Two for the top

It’s another busy night of WPIAL boys soccer section action, including two games matching teams that have yet to lose in their respective sections.

In Section 2-3A, defending champion Moon is set to host neighboring rival Montour.

The Tigers are 4-0-1 in the section and 5-1-1 overall. The Spartans are undefeated with a 4-0 record.

Expect a low-scoring game since goals have been hard to come by against either team. Both Montour and Moon have yielded less than a goal a game thus far.

The Spartans have averaged over four goals per game while Moon is averaging over three per contest.

The other perfect match Thursday has Mt. Pleasant visiting Belle Vernon in a fight for first place in Section 3-2A.

The Vikings and Leopards each have one loss overall, but they are 5-0 and tied for first place in the section, two games ahead of McGuffey and Yough.

Volleyball jam up

Section battles are starting to heat up in WPIAL girls volleyball, including a Class A section that could be log jammed at the top depending on Thursday’s results.

As of now, defending district champion Frazier has a one-game lead over California, Mapletown and West Greene.

On Thursday, Frazier hosts California, Mapletown hosts Avella, and West Greene is home to Geibel Catholic.

If the visiting Trojans knock off the Commodores, while both the Maples and Pioneers win at home, all four teams will be tied for first place in Section 2-A.

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