- High School
With what Devin Wilson has done for the Montour football team this year, it makes last year’s Spartans a one-of-a-kind team.
The 2011 Montour Spartans won the WPIAL Class AAA title. While that is an unforgettable achievement, what made that team unique was the triumvirate of offensive players that coach Lou Cerro had.
The 2011 Montour team can now say it had all on one team:
The No. 1 receiver in WPIAL history.
The second-leading passer in WPIAL history.
The sixth-leading rusher in WPIAL history.
No other team in WPIAL history can come close to making such claims.
* Wilson, a senior, broke the WPIAL career record for receptions a few weeks ago and now has 228 for his career. Montour plays West Allegheny in the WPIAL quarterfinals Friday night.
* Dillon Buechel, the quarterback of the 2011 team who is now playing at Duquesne University, finished his career at Montour as the second-leading passer in WPIAL history with 6,899 yards.
* Julian Durden, a star running back on the 2011 team who is now playing at Kent State, finished his high school career as the sixth-leading rusher in WPIAL history with 5,577 yards.
Put those three together, and for sure, the 2011 Montour team should be remembered for a long time.
In the WPIAL Class A football quarterfinals Friday night, it will be the Battle of the Backs – times two.
The elite eight in the Class A ranks brings about two games matching elite running backs. No other classification can boast of such “back talk” in the quarterfinal round.
First off, Rochester plays North Catholic at Dormont Stadium. Rochester’s Dante Marsick is having a big year and finished the regular season with 1,417 yards rushing, seventh-best in the WPIAL. North Catholic’s P.J. Fulmore is only a sophomore, but was 12th in the WPIAL with 1,292 yards.
Meanwhile, Clairton vs. Brentwood is the second version of “Battle of the Backs.” Clairton’s Tyler Boyd finished 10th in the WPIAL in rushing yards with 1,318. Brentwood’s Justin Vickless was 11th with 1,317.
The Running Quarterbacks
Twenty-nine players in the WPIAL rushed for than 1,000 yards in the regular season. Two of the 29 were quarterbacks.
Northgate’s Cody Walter rushed for 1,153 yards while Elizabeth Forward’s JaQuan Davidson had 1,024. Also, Ellwood City’s Jared Myers was a running back who saw some time at quarterback. He rushed for 1,060 yards.
State Record Holder
There is a quarterback outside the WPIAL who slings the football like no one has in Pennsylvania history.
Matt Bodamer of Port Allegany in District 9 is a senior quarterback who now holds the state record for career passing yardage with 9,934 yards. There is a chance the WPIAL Class A champ could see Bodamer in the PIAA playoffs.
Port Allegany is undefeated and could win the District 9 Class A title. The District 9 champ goes on to play the District 10 champ in the quarterfinals of the PIAA playoffs. The winner of that game will play the winner of the quarterfinal between the WPIAL champ and the District 5 champ.
The first open coaching job in WPIAL football is at Imani Christian. Harvey Smith is no longer Imani Christian’s coach. Smith is gone after Imani Christian’s first season in the WPIAL. Although the Saints finished with a 6-3 record, they were not eligible for the WPIAL playoffs because they are on two years probation.
Smith is the brother of Gateway coach Terry Smith.
All the White Moves
There have been some fun times in the White house lately.
We’re talking abut the White house in Mars where Jordyn and Matt White live. Jordyn is a senior on the Mars girls soccer team while her brother, Matt, is a junior on the Mars boys soccer team.
Both played in WPIAL championship games last Saturday at Chartiers Valley. The Mars girls won and the boys lost. Matt is the second-leading scorer on the boys team while Jordyn is a standout defender on the girls team.
While soccer has been fun, those who live in the White house also are enjoying a fabulous football season at Mars. Matt also is the kicker for the Mars football team, which takes a 9-1 record into Friday night’s WPIAL quarterfinals against West Mifflin.
“We’re usually not home very much six days out of the week,” Jordyn White said. “But we know we’re pretty blessed to have done what we’ve done this year.”
When it Counts Most
Frannie Crouse of Greensburg Central Catholic has been a prolific goal scorer in WPIAL girls soccer. But sometimes, players who score a plethora of goals have trouble scoring in the big games. Not Crouse.
Crouse, a junior, has been on a roll in the postseason. Rarely has one player scored so much in playoff games.
In five postseason games (WPIAL and PIAA), Crouse has scored 16 goals. She has had at least two in every game and scored four twice. In the WPIAL playoffs, she had three against Chartiers-Houston, four against Springdale, three against Shady Side Academy and two against Sewickley Academy in the WPIAL final.
She didn’t slow down when the PIAA playoffs started Tuesday, as she scored four in a 7-2 victory against Karns City Tuesday. The Centurions plays York Catholic in the PIAA quarterfinals tomorrow in Altoona.
And this Centurion went over the century mark in goals earlier this year and now has 136 for her career. But Crouse is one of two 100-goal scorers for GCC. Malea Fabean also went over 100 goals recently.
Where Are They Now?
Former Gateway football star Dorian Bell is now a standout linebacker at Duquesne University and is tied for sixth in the country in tackles at the NCAA Division I-AA level. Bell has 54 solo and 38 assists. Bell started his college career at Ohio State, but left and transferred to Duquesne.