WPIAL Class 2A football championship breakdown: Beaver Falls vs. Serra Catholic

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Thursday, November 25, 2021 | 11:01 AM


WPIAL Class 2A football championship

No. 5 Beaver Falls vs. No. 6 Serra Catholic

5 p.m. Friday, Heinz Field

On the air: TribHSSN.TribLive.com (video); 1020 AM, 1230 AM, 99.3 FM, 1460 AM

Winner plays: Winner of District 9 champion Karns City and District 10 champion Farrell in the PIAA semifinals Dec. 3 or 4.

WPIAL titles: Beaver Falls 5 (1928, ’60, ’84, 2016, ‘20); Serra Catholic 2 (1981, 2007)

Beaver Falls (9-3)

Player to watch: Jaren Brickner

Brickner ranks third in the WPIAL in passing yardage this season after completing 128 of 232 aerials for 2,477 yards and 24 touchdowns with 10 interceptions. He also has run for 410 yards, which is second on the team. In last week’s semifinal win, he ran for 37 yards and two scores and threw for 80 yards.

Statistical leaders

Passing: Jaren Brickner, 128-132, 2,477 yards, 24 TDs, 10 INTs

Rushing: Isaiah Aeschbacher, 90-783 yards, 9 TDS

Receiving: Trey Singleton, 39-848 yards, 11 TDs

How they got here: Beaver Falls defeated No. 12 Western Beaver, 42-8; No. 13 New Brighton, 40-0; and No. 1 Steel Valley, 21-8.

Probable starting lineup

Coach: Nick Nardone

Offense

QB, 11, Jaren Brickner, 6-0, 170, jr.

RB, 22, Isaiah Aeschbacher, 6-3, 205, jr.

RB, 5, Quinton Adamson, 5-10, 160, sr.

WR, 2, Trey Singleton, 5-11, 160, jr.

WR, 3, Mekhi Clark, 6-0, 170, sr.

WR, 9, Quadir Thomas, 6-3, 185, sr.

TE, 8, Tyler Cain, 6-2, 220, sr.

LT, 63, Sy’Mauri McCoy, 6-3, 220, so.

LG, 70, Damian Lee, 5-11, 285, so.

C, 71, Connor Paolucci, 6-0, 290, jr.

RG, 52, Anthony Cousar, 6-3, 220, sr.

RT, 75, Thomas Tutwiler, 5-11, 220, jr.

Defense

DE, 63, Sy’Mauri McCoy, 6-3, 220, so.

DT, 71, Connor Paolucci, 6-0, 290, jr.

DT, 70, Damian Lee, 5-11, 285, so.

DE, 52, Anthony Cousar, 6-3, 220, sr.

LB, 8, Tyler Cain, 6-2, 220, sr.

LB, 28, Brizz Rawl, 5-8, 175, so.

CB, 25, Da’Sean Anderson, 5-10, 150, so.

CB, 5, Quinton Adamson, 5-10, 160, sr.

CB, 9, Quadir Thomas, 6-3, 185, sr.

S, 2, Trey Singleton, 5-11, 160, jr.

S, 3, Mekhi Clark, 6-0, 170, sr.

Special teams

K, 8, Tyler Cain, 6-2, 220, sr.

P, 11, Jaren Brickner, 6-0, 170, jr.

Notable: Beaver Falls’ defense has held teams to 15.1 points per game. The group is led by Mekhi Clark, who has 10 interceptions, including one returned 44 yards for a touchdown. The group has 17 interceptions as a team. … Offensively, Beaver Falls has shown balance, throwing for 2,548 yards while rushing for 2,170. … Clark also has been a reliable receiver with 32 catches for 649 yards and seven scores. … Tyler Cain has a team-high 86 tackles, including four sacks, and also has booted 29 extra points. … The Tigers started 0-3 after losses to Blackhawk, Aliquippa and OLSH, but then went on a nine-game winning streak, outscoring opponents 318-101.

Serra Catholic (13-1)

Player to watch: Ryan Brooks

Brooks is the leading tackler for the Eagles. The 6-foot-4 senior defensive end has 75 tackles this season, including 12 sacks. He also has forced three fumbles, recovered a fumble and blocked a punt.

Statistical leaders

Passing: Max Rocco, 108-206, 1,753 yards, 24 TDs, 7 INTs

Rushing: Machai Brooks-Dutrieuille, 142-863 yards, 6 TDs

Receiving: Terrell Booth, 20-842 yards, 14 TDs

How they got here: Serra Catholic beat No. 11 Neshannock, 61-21; No. 3 Laurel, 6-0; and No. 2 Sto-Rox, 13-12.

Probable starting lineup

Coach: Jose Regus

Offense

QB, 15, Max Rocco, 6-1, 181, sr.

RB, 1, Machai Duetrieulle-Brooks, 5-6, 168, sr.

WR, 2, Pharoh Fisher, 6-2, 182, sr.

WR, 9, Terrell Booth, 6-0, 170, sr.

WR, 11, Jayvon Holt, 6-0, 173, sr.

HB, 14, Zack Weber, 6-0, 204, sr.

LT, 60, Drew Hairston, 6-0, 183, so.

LG, 52, Jadell Minniefield, 6-0, 236, so.

C, 58, Danny Opferman, 6-1, 257, sr.

RG, 53, Michael Schanck, 5-10, 220, jr.

RT, 55, Matt Bisceglia, 5-11, 207, sr.

Defense

DE, 5, Ryan Brooks, 6-2, 214, sr.

DT, 14, Zack Weber, 6-0, 204, sr.

DE, 6, Dior Blair-Brown, 5-10, 202, sr.

DE, 53, Michael Schanck, 5-10, 220, jr.

LB, 1, Machai Duetrieulle-Brooks, 5-6, 168, sr.

LB, 19, Jaden Williams, 5-7, 175, sr.

S, 11, Jayvon Holt, 6-0, 173, sr.

S, 9, Terrell Booth, 6-0, 170, sr.

FS, 12, Elijah Ward, 5-10, 133, jr.

DB, 2, Pharoh Fisher, 6-2, 182, sr.

DB, 7, DaiQuan Chatfield, 5-9, 134, jr.

Special teams

K, 21, Caden Bauer, 5-10, 151, fr.

P, 34, Mike Schanck, 5-10, 220, jr.

Notable: Max Rocco and Elijah Ward combined to complete 8 of 20 passes for 112 yards in last week’s win over Sto-Rox. … Pharoh Fisher had one carry but made it count with a 3-yard TD run. … Terrell Booth had two catches for 58 yards and a score. … The Eagles opened the season 10-0 before falling to Steel Valley, 28-7, in the regular-season finale. … They were awarded two forfeit victories over Carlynton and Ligonier Valley after those teams were unable to field enough healthy players for their games. … Serra has outscored opponents 28.6-8.8 on average this season.

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@triblive.com or via Twitter @BHartlep_Trib.

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