WPIAL Plays of the Week – Week Five 2016

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Tuesday, October 4, 2016 | 1:03 PM


The latest slate of games marked the midway point of the regular season, and both Friday and Saturday were full of exciting action. This week’s edition features a goal-line stand as time expires, a prolific running back making his mark as a receiver on the winning score, a diminutive dynamo breaking a long run to close out the scoring in a battle of 6A heavyweights, and a punt return that put the icing on an upset win. Thus, here’s the collection of the finest plays from Week Five on the gridiron.

1. Central Valley 42, Beaver 35

The Beaver Valley Conference in Class 3A has featured a clash of heavyweights nearly every week, and the latest slate included a battle for first place between the Warriors and Bobcats. Central Valley took the lead with less than three minutes left on a Danny Santia run. Beaver’s QB Darius Wise, though, appeared to on the cusp of guiding his squad to a potential tying score in the closing seconds, as he reached the 1-yard line. With no timeouts remaining for Beaver, Wise called his own number on a run, but he was stuffed by the Central Valley defense shy of the goal line, causing the time to expire.

WBVP-AM 1230’s Bob Barrickman and Kerry Lacey detail the hectic closing seconds, in which the Warriors stood tall to preserve the victory:

2. Apollo-Ridge 35, Seton-LaSalle 28

It would not be an overstatement to say that Apollo-Ridge’s recent success has been a direct result of the return of Duane Brown. The senior has been explosive as a runner and receiver after returning to the gridiron from a serious knee injury, and he displayed his immense talent against the Rebels. With the squads deadlocked with less than three minutes remaining, Brown hauled in a pass from Vikings QB Kyle Fitzroy, and took it 45 yards to paydirt. Brown’s touchdown proved to be the winning score in the Saturday night tilt.

MSA Sports’ Don Rebel and Mike Azadian have the call of Brown’s decisive play:

3. Central Catholic 48, Pine-Richland 35

Central Catholic and Pine-Richland have engaged in a bevy of memorable matchups in the past few years, and the most recent game proved to be another classic. Although Central Catholic held the fourth-quarter advantage, the Rams scored with less than four minutes remaining to make it a one-possession game. The Vikings immediately extended that lead, however, as JJ Younger delivered a 56-yard touchdown run on the ensuing play, his third score of the game.

MSA Sports’ Lanny Frattare and Bob Orkwis, on WJAS-AM 1320, provide the commentary for Younger’s knockout blow to Pine-Richland’s hopes.

4. Gateway 23, Penn-Trafford 6

After several impressive showings earlier this season, Penn-Trafford appeared to be the favorite in the Big East Conference of Class 5A. It was the Gators who walked off the field with a decisive victory, though, as Gateway put an end to PT’s 25-game regular-season winning streak. Leading the way for the Gators was Jaquan Brisker, who had two touchdowns, including a 55-yard punt return with 4:50 left in the fourth quarter.

MSA Sports’ Matt Vandriak and Sean Saputo highlight the Gators’ special teams strike that sealed the outcome:

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