WPIAL Plays of the Week – Week Ten 2016
Tuesday, November 8, 2016 | 5:50 PM
While football realignment made for an unusual format to begin the 2016 playoffs (first round games in 1 and 2A, quarterfinals in 3-6A), the intensity and excitement was still very much present. So, too, were upsets, as the number of lower-seeded teams that prevailed nearly reached double digits. Among the tops plays for the first week of the postseason were a winning field goal nearly as time expired in 6A, a go-ahead touchdown with just seconds left in 1A, a shocker sealed by an interception in 4A, and a team continuing its magical run in 3A by knocking off a perennial powerhouse. Without further ado, here are the best plays from Week 10.
1. Pine-Richland 35, Bethel Park 32
After Pine-Richland lost its star quarterback to injury about a month ago, many wondered if 2016 would be an unfulfilled season for the Rams. Pine-Richland seemed undeterred by that setback, though, and with the game deadlocked in the final seconds, the Rams drove to within field-goal range for kicker Vittorio Orsini. Orsini booted the 27-yard kick through the uprights, propelling PR to the win against the Black Hawks.
MSA Sports’ Lanny Frattare and Bob Orkwis on WJAS-AM 1320 call the winning points that sent the Rams to the semifinals:
2. Springdale 50, Carmichaels 44
The Dynamos needed a win in Week 9 just to qualify for the playoffs, but Springdale continued that momentum in its first-round playoff contest against the Mighty Mikes. Engaged in a shootout with Carmichaels, Springdale used late heroics, scoring the winning touchdown with just three seconds left to advance, as Sammy Carey connected with Josh Harmon to cap the upset.
Greene Sports Network 1’s Jason Tennant and Lanfer Simpson have the call of the Springdale touchdown in the final moments:
3. New Castle 51, South Fayette 43
South Fayette has been so dominant in recent seasons, that it’s become almost a given to pencil the Lions into a trip to Heinz Field. After an unblemished regular season, South Fayette appeared to be among the favorites in 4A. But the Red Hurricane wrecked that prediction, as New Castle pulled off a quarterfinals stunner. Clinging to a lead in the final seconds, New Castle’s defense came up with the final play to secure the win, as Marshane McElroy intercepted a pass in the end zone as time expired.
WKST-AM 1200’s Ken Hlebovy and Rob Gregory provide the audio for the dramatic finish that sent the Red Hurricane to the semifinals:
4. Derry 33, Central Valley 20
Derry had cruised to an undefeated regular season, but the Trojans were expected to face by far their toughest test in a matchup against Central Valley. The Trojans passed that test with flying colors, though, securing just the second playoff win in program history. Derry took control in the early going, and running back Tyler Balega sealed the outcome just more than halfway through the fourth quarter with a 67-yard run to put his team ahead 31-14.
WCNS-AM 1480’s Bill Brown and Mike Porembka detail the scoring scamper, which prompted the Trojans faithful to erupt into a chant of “Derry”:
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