BIG-PLAY TIGERS REMAIN UNBEATEN WITH 40-14 WIN OVER MT. LEBANON
North Allegheny stayed unbeaten on Friday night with a 40-14 victory over the Mt. Lebanon Blue Devils at Newman Stadium. The win was NA’s fifth in a row and 10th straight in the head-to-head series with Mt. Lebanon. The Tigers defense held the Blue Devils scoreless in the second half and allowed only 23 total yards in the final 24 minutes.
On a night of big plays, North Allegheny opened the ballgame with a 75-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Brayden Prekop for an instant 6-0 lead. The Tigers’ two-point conversion attempt failed following the touchdown.
Mt. Lebanon answered back on its second offensive possession and tied the game at 6-6 on a 29-yard touchdown pass by Joey Daniels to Evan Jones with 3:52 to play in the first quarter. The extra point kick by Casey Sorsdal put the Blue Devils in the lead, 7-6.
Trailing at Newman Stadium for the first time all season, the one-point deficit was short-lived as North Allegheny scored on its next play from scrimmage. Senior running back Percise Colonraced to the end zone on a 64-yard touchdown run to give the Tigers a 13-7 lead with 3:34 left in the opening stanza.
Mt. Lebanon mounted a drive deep into North Allegheny territory midway through the second quarter but was turned away thanks to a leaping interception by Colon at the Tigers 1-yard line.
On a time-consuming drive, North Allegheny chewed up 98-yards on 14 plays, culminating the march with a 24-yard touchdown run by Colon for a 19-7 advantage with 1:55 to play before halftime. The Tigers two-point try after the Colon TD run failed. Colon finished the night with 150 yards on 15 carries and two touchdowns.
The Blue Devils put together a quick scoring drive before halftime without any timeouts remaining, capping a 4-play drive with a 37-yard one-handed touchdown catch by Mason Ventrone on a pass from Daniels to trim the NA lead to 19-14 with just 31 seconds to play in the second quarter.
The second half was controlled by the North Allegheny defense and rushing attack. Following a Mt. Lebanon punt, the Tigers again used a splash play to take a strangle hold of the contest. On a reverse handoff, senior Luke Colella scampered for a 69-yard touchdown run to increase the NA lead to 26-14 with 8:58 to go in the third quarter.
North Allegheny put the finishing touches on the win with two fourth quarter touchdowns. Senior Nathan Hoke scored on a 1-yard touchdown run and Kolin Dinkins hit pay dirt on a 59-yard run to bring the final score to 40-14, Tigers.
In all, the Tigers racked up 421 total yards with 361 on the ground. Senior quarterback Ben Petchske had a fine game as well, rushing for 60 yards on 10 carries. He also completed 5 of 8 for 60 yards.
The NA defense sacked Daniels six times on the night, led by Hoke’s two sacks. Junior Justus Gildon was the leader in tackles on the night with 6.5 stops.
North Allegheny improves to 5-0 overall and 4-0 in Class 6A. The Tigers will visit Seneca Valley (2-3, 2-2) next week.