WPIAL Plays of the Week – Week 9

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 | 12:00 AM

With the regular season now history, we present our top plays for Week Nine…While many teams had clinched going into this past weekend, there were still some playoff spots on the line…While the winners celebrated with a smile, the losers could not hide their big fat frown…As we prepare for the playoffs while the curtain on the regular season comes crashing down.

Pine-Richland Rams 19 – Shaler Titans 15
MSA Sports Greg Warnock and Johnny Lee on the call

Most coaches of the visiting underdog will tell you that if they can keep the game close through three quarters, there's always a chance. That is how 2-6 Pine-Richland played it in the win-and-your-in Quad A Northern Seven Conference showdown at 5-3 Shaler. Trailing 15-12 going into the final quarter, the Rams Tommy Berexa scored on a 4-yard run on the first play of the fourth stanza en route to a 19-15 win over the Titans and Pine-Richland's second ever Class AAAA playoff berth.

Hopewell Vikings 34 – West Allegheny Indians 31 in Overtime
WBVP-AM 1230 and WMBA-AM 1460's Bob Barrickman and Bruce Frey on the call

In this rematch of the 2009 Class AAA championship game, it was a tale of two halves…and then some. Hopewell jumped out to a 28-0 lead late in the second quarter, only to watch West Allegheny come back and tie it before the end of regulation. Then after an Indians field goal in overtime made it 31-28, Vikings quarterback Nolan Harmotto faked to the great Rushel Shell and scored from ten yards out to clinch a playoff spot for Hopewell in a thrilling 34-31 OT win.

New Castle Red Hurricane 30 – Blackhawk Cougars 27
WKST-AM 1200's Ken Hlebovy and Stan Roberts on the call

New Castle knew coming into Week 9 that they had no shot at the postseason no matter what happened, however that didn't mean that misery doesn't love company at that the Red Hurricane couldn't rain on the Blackhawk postseason parade. Canes quarterback John Matarazzo threw for 247 yards and two touchdowns, including a 26-yard scoring pass to Marcus Carter on the last play of the game to knock out the Cougars 30-27.

Ellwood City Wolverines 24 – Riverside Panthers 21
MSA Sports Justin McKim and Greg Kuntz on the call

It had been ten years since Ellwood City last qualified for the playoffs. A victory at home in Week 9 would not only erase a decade of frustration with a playoff berth, but also would eliminate rival Riverside. Wolverines quarterback Gino Ceriani, who completed 16 of 22 passes for 277 yards, threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Crawford with two minutes remaining in a 24-21 triumph over the Panthers that sent fans of Lincoln High into big time celebration mode.

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