Football Preview: Class 5A Championship

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No. 1 Penn-Trafford Warriors (11-1) vs. No. 2 Gateway Gators (11-1) At Heinz Field (5 p.m.)

The top two teams in Class 5A and the Big East Conference will battle for the second time this season, only this time it is for a chance at being named the WPIAL championship. Gateway has more of the bigger names in terms of statistics, but Penn-Trafford got the best of the on Sept. 29, 28-0.

Seniors Cam Laffoon and John Gay highlighted the scoring for the Warriors in the contest. Laffoon threw two first half touchdowns, while Gay had a 5-yard touchdown run in the second quarter and capped the scoring in the fourth with a 31-yard run.

The shutout was the only time Gateway has scored less than 21 points in a game this season. On the year, they are averaging 37.6 points per game. The Warriors have allowed only 10.7 points per game with three shutouts. Gateway has the top passer in the WPIAL this year with senior Brady Walker. Walker has completed 207 of 332 passes (62 percent) for 3,394 yards and 37 touchdowns to six interceptions. Junior Courtney Jackson has the primary target for Walker, hauling in 63 receptions for 1,382 yards and 20 touchdowns. Both Walker and Jackson were selected to the BIg East All-Conference team.

Other Gators joining them on the all-conference team were offensive guard Tomi Woodson, defensive end Canaan Cleveland, and defensive back Jeremiah Josephs.

For the Warriors, Gay and Laffoon both made first team as well. Joining them were offensive tackle Mitch Nedley, kicker Nick Tarabrella, defensive tackle Logan Hawkins, defensive end Will Mayr, outside linebacker Matt Wilkie, defensive back Dimitri George, and John Ruane as the coach of the year.

The Warriors have never won a WPIAL championship, while the Gators are seeking their first since 1986.

To see how each team arrived at Heinz Field, click on the link below.

Class 5A Football Playoff Bracket