FINAL SCORE: UPPER ST. CLAIR 38, CENTRAL CATHOLIC 0
Washington beats Seton-LaSalle, 33-17.
North Catholic beats Rochester, 22-15.
West Allegheny beats Montour, 14-2.
Upper St. Clair finished with 14 first downs and 224 yards while Central Catholic had only six first downs and 97 total yards. Central Catholic had four turnovers and all of them led to scores.
USC quarterback Pete Coughlin 6 of 7 throwing for 83 yards and ran nine times for 26 yards. Mac Pope had 58 yards on 10 carries. Luigi Lista-Brinza rushed for 68 yards on 14 attempts.
J.J. Cosentino of Central was 3 of 11 for 37 yards.
9:23 p.m. - This game is going to be over in less than two hours. Upper St. Clair's defense has been terrific.
Dillon 56-yard TD run and West Allegheny has gone ahead of Montour, 14-2.
North Allegheny leading Bethel Park, 35-7.
P.J. Fulmore answers Rochester TD with a 7-yard score and North Catholic leads Rochester, 22-8.
Washington blocks Seton-LaSalle field goal attempt late in third quarter. Washington still leads, 20-17.
Dante Marsick gets TD for Rochester and Rams cut North Catholic lead to 16-8.
9:12 p.m. - Start the clock and run it. Upper St. Clair's Steve Mackowick scores on 5-yard run and Upper St. Clair leads Central Catholic, 38-0. Shocking? Yes. Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers for Central. Vikings have more turnovers tonight than a bakery (sorry for the poor pun, but have to come up some kind of humor in this yawner).
END OF THIRD QUARTER: UPPER ST. CLAIR 31, CENTRAL CATHOLIC 0
And here comes Washington: Josh Wise scores on QB keeper and Little Prexies have taken 20-17 lead on Seton-LaSalle.
Hopewell recovers onside kick for TD, still trails Central Valley, 35-14.
Thomas Jefferson has come back and taken a 17-7 lead on Franklin Regional. So much for that upset, I guess.
9:03 p.m. - I think I've written this before. Turnover Central Catholic. This time Cosentino's pass tipped an intercepted by John Rutkowski. Is Central going to get "mercy ruled?"
P.J. Fulmore 46-yard TD reception and North Catholic beating Rochester, 16-0.
9:00 p.m. - Could anyone have predicted this? It's now Upper St. Clair 31, Central Catholic 0. Central QB J.J. Cosentino sacked, fumbles, USC recovers at the 11. Two plays later, Mac Pope scores on 4-yard run. 4:39 left in third. We're close to the mercy rule.
Montour scores against West Allegheny, but it's only a safety. West Allegheny still leads, 7-2. Montour has yet to score a TD against West Allegheny in two games.
3-yard TD run by James Wheeler. West Mifflin leads Mars, 21-6, midway through third quarter.
North Catholic leading Rochester, 10-0, certainly surprising. Eastern Conference wasn't thought to be very good this year. North Catholic won that conference. But the Trojans are showing something tonight.
8:54 p.m. - Central goes three and out on first possession of second half.
Gateway got TD right before half and Gators slice Woodland Hills lead to 17-14. Secondhalf should be a good one.
8:52 p.m. - Central QB J.J. Cosentino looks like he has a decent arm. But Central virtually no passing game.
Another field goal for Mt. Lebanon. But Lebo still trails Seneca Valley, 20-6.
8:50 p.m. - Who said Pete Coughlin was just a runner? Just lofted a pretty 36-yard TD pass to John Rutkowski and Upper St. Clair leads Central Catholic 24-0. Officially a blowout now?
8:48 p.m. - One of few mistakes by USC tonight. A holding penalty at Central Catholic 25-yard line. Panthers driving again.
Five turnovers by Beaver in first half against Jeannette.
P.J. Fulmore TD run and North Catholic takes 10-0 lead on Rochester.
8:46 p.m. - As always with USC backs, they run so hard.
8:44 p.m. - Can't see Central coming back unless USC makes a few mistakes and unless Lista-Brinza breaks a long run.
8:42 p.m. - Upper St. Clair doesn't have a stud running back with a ton of yards this season. Doesn't matter. They still win.
Jim Render with that studious look again tonight??? With the glasses on the sideline. As he often says, "Fat and happy."
Never fails. Canadian Curt with a Mars update. West Mifflin leads Mars, 14-6, at halftime.
Jeannette destroying Beaver, 40-0.
Another TD pass from Jordan Brown and Seneca Valley goes on top of Mt. Lebanon, 20-3. Brown three TD passes. The last one was 84 yards to Jon Dorogy.
Monessen leads Neshannock, 7-3
No mercy rule tonight for South Fayette. Beaver Falls and South Fayette are tied, 14-14, in first half.
Jeannette crushing Beaver, 33-0.
Sto-Rox 14, Union 2
Gateway has nine penalties and only seven points in first half and trails Woodland Hills.
Halftime: Seton-LaSalle 17, Washington 14
It will probably be another mercy rule game for North Allegheny. Leading, 28-0, one minute left in half. Leftwich 1-yard TD run.
James Wheeler has 97 yards on 17 attempts in first half for West Mifflin.
Dimitri Orfanopoulos 26-yard field goal cuts Seneca Valley lead to 13-3
Freshman Miles Sanders has 80 yards rushing for Woodland Hills against Gateway. Woody High leading, 17-7.
Union gets a safety, trails Sto-Rox, 7-2.
Shai McKenzie gets loose 56-yard TD run. Washington cuts Seton-LaSalle lead to 17-14. McKenzie now has 112 yards on 13 carries.
Clairton gets 85-yard TD from Tyler Boyd, leads Brentwood 16-0. Looks like win No. 58. One away from state record.
Aliquippa 22, Mount Pleasant 0
Central Valley 28, Hopewell 6
Could we have an upset brewing? Franklin Regional leads No. 1 seed Thomas Jefferson, 7-3.
HALFTIME: UPPER ST. CLAIR 17, CENTRAL CATHOLIC 0
First half - It's not like Upper St. Clair is dominating Central Catholic in statistics. Upper St. Clair has six first downs and 92 total yards. Central Catholic has four first downs and 80 total yards. Two big turnovers led to scores for USC.
Luigi Lista-Brinza has 64 yards on 13 attempts for Central.
Thanks to USC stat crew. Great job.
Central Catholic doesn't have type of offense to come back
HALFTIME: NORTH CATHOLIC 3, ROCHESTER 0
HALFTIME: WEST ALLEGHENY 7, MONTOUR 0
8:16 p.m. - With only 1:25 left in half, Mitch MacZura attempts 39-yard field goal. It is blocked. Still 17-0 Upper St. Clair.
8:15 p.m. - Another mistake by Central. Setting up for field goal. Only 10 players on field. Timeout.
Field goal Seton-LaSalle. Lead Washington 17-7.
8:12 p.m. - Finally some offensive life for Central Catholic. 28-yard run puts ball at Upper St. Clair 30. Three minutes left in half.
Woodland Hills has taken 17-7 lead on Gateway.
Jason Lozzi 15-yard TD pass from Owen Nearhoof and Mars cuts West Mifflin lead to 14-7.
North Catholic has taken 3-0 lead on Rochester.
From the "Crusader" coach: Two TD passes by Seneca Valley's Jordan Brown and Raiders lead Mt. Lebanon, 13-0. But Mt. Lebanon driving.
8:08 p.m. - Is this going to be a blowout? Mac Pope scores on 5-yard run and USC leads Central, 17-0, with 6:12 left in half. Central Catholic doing everything wrong offensively. Turnovers are killer.
8:06 p.m. - OK, some USC students showed up and the crowd on USC side isn't that bad after all.
Wash High cuts Seton-LaSalle lead to 14-7. Shai McKenzie has 32 yards only on nine carries so far.
8:04 p.m. - Interference penalty on Central gives USC ball at Central 29. Central in big-time trouble.
8:02 p.m. - Central struggling to move the ball, but turnovers and penalties have hurt.
Jeannette crushing Beaver, 21-0.
And we have a TD in Montour-West Allegheny. Chayse Dillon goes 11 yards for TD and West Allegheny leads, 7-0.
From Steve Heckmann: North Allegheny gets 7-yard blocked punt return by Elijah Zeise and takes 21-0 lead on Bethel Park.
Woodland Hills 10, Gateway 7
7:55 p.m. - Mistake by Central QB J.J. Cosentino. Scrambles, throws one up for grabs. INT by Joe Repischak. Facemask on return. USC starts at Central 9. On second down, Pete Coughlin runs 7 yards for TD. PAT good. Upper St. Clair leads Central Catholic, 10-0, with 10:56 left in second quarter.
Looks like West Mifflin speed might be too much for Mars. James Wheeler 19-yard TD run and West Mifflin leads, 14-0.
Luke Brumbaugh TD pass to Rotunda and Seton-LaSalle takes 14-0 lead on Washington. Seton is better than a lot of people think.
7:53 p.m. - END OF FIRST QUARTER: UPPER ST. CLAIR 3, CENTRAL CATHOLIC 0
7:51 p.m. - USC moved to its own 48. On third down, Pete Coughlin sacked by Leo Loughery.
Central Catholic looked like it just got a piece of a USC put, but it still went 40 yards.
Central Valley takes 14-0 lead on Hopewell.
Alex DiCiantis TD run and North Allegheny breezing past Bethel Park, 14-0.
Here we go again? No TDs? From Ryan Riordan: Montour and West Allegheny scoreless after first quarter.
7:47 p.m. - I'm going to say there won't be much scoring in this game. Mistakes might end up being the difference. So far, it's the difference with USC leading, 3-0, after a turnover.
Gateway ties Woodland Hills, 7-7, on Montae Nicholson TD catch from Woodson.
From Nick T: Rochester and North Catholic scoreless after first quarter.
7:44 p.m. - Central Catholic punts after getting one first down. USC run defense looking very solid so far.
Dravon Henry 1-yard TD run and Aliquippa leads Mount Pleasant, 6-0
Thomas Jefferson leading, 3-0
From Magic Malik: James Wheeler 20-yard TD run: West Mifflin 7, Mars 0
From Big Brad Everett: Seton-LaSalle 6, Washington 0 - Luke Brumbaugh 21-yard TD pass to Scott Orndoff.
Woodland Hills 7, Gateway 0
North Allegheny has taken 7-0 lead on Bethel Park. 12-yard TD pass from Leftwich to Coniker.
7:37 p.m. - Drive stalls. But Upper St. Clair gets 22-yard field goal from Ben Stalnaker. 3-0 USC.
7:34 p.m. - Wow. Pete Coughlin scrambles around on third down, throws one up for grabs. USC's Mac Pope catches it at the 8.
7:33 p.m. - After getting a first down, Niko Thorpe fumbles, USC's John Loper recovers at Central 30.
7:30 p.m. - And we're under way. Central with ball, starts at 18.
7:26 p.m. - One of the officials on the game - Brad Tokar. A former 4,000-yard rusher at Fort Cherry in the 1980s.
7:20 p.m. - Ten minutes before game and Upper St. Clair side is maybe one-third full. Maybe a late-arriving crowd. Maybe traffic on Route 51. I see, like, no students, either.
Key to the game: How well Central Catholic runs the ball.
A year ago: It was the coming-out party for USC quarterback Pete Coughlin. Starting QB Dakota Conwell was hurt, and Coughlin made his first start. He ran for more than 200 yards and USC upset Central Catholic.
Do you remember? These two teams have met in a WPIAL championship game twice. In 2003, Central Catholic beat Upper St. Clair, 42-10. Upper St. Clair had a kid named Sean Lee, who was a junior. A year later, Central Catholic beat Upper St. Clair in the WPIAL semifinals. It was the final game of Lee's career.
The other championship matchup between the two was in 1988 at Three Rivers Stadium. Upper St. Clair won, 7-0. That was the first year of the PIAA playoffs, and Upper St. Clair's school board had voted not to participate. Other schools around the WPIAl voted the same way. So, Central Catholic went to the PIAA playoffs, and ended up winning the WPIAL title.