Football Preview: Class 6A Semifinal Preview
No. 1 Pine-Richland Rams (11-0) vs. No. 5 North Allegheny (8-3) At Ambridge (7:30 p.m.)
The top-seeded Rams and fifth-seed Tigers both cruised into the semifinals with quarterfinal routs. The Rams defeated Norwin, 49-14, which was right on the dot with how many points they averaged per game this season. Senior quarterback and Notre Dame recruit, Phil Jurkovec, led the way like he has all season with four touchdown passes and an 84-yard touchdown run. The Tigers won their second game at Mt. Lebanon this season with their 38-14 win over the Blue Devils. North Allegheny scored touchdowns on its first two possessions of the game, including an 82-yard run by senior quarterback, Luke Trueman. Turner White scored two touchdowns for the Tigers and Nikko Rankin had a pick-six to seal the victory. This is a rematch of the last game of the regular season when the Rams defeated the Tigers on the road, 48-28. The 20-point win was the smallest margin of victory for Pine-Richland this season. The Rams lost in the semifinals the last two years and are looking to head back to the WPIAL championship for the first time since 2014 when they won it. The Tigers lost in the semifinals last year and are looking to return to the title game for the first time since 2012 when they went undefeated on their way to a WPIAL and PIAA championship.
No. 2 Central Catholic Vikings (9-2) vs. No. 6 Penn Hills Indians (8-3) At Fox Chapel (7:30 p.m.)
The second semifinal will pit two more Northern Seven Conference opponents against each other. The Vikings shutout the Indians, 21-0, in the final game of the regular season. It was the second shutout of the season for the Vikings, who relied on their offense in their 27-20 win against Peters Township in the quarterfinals. In that game, senior Troy Fisher accounted for all of Central Catholic’s scores with two touchdown passes and two rushing touchdowns. The Indians have been relying on their offense all season, and it wasn’t anything different in their 30-28 win at Bethel Park in the semifinals. On the season, Penn Hills is averaging 29.7 points per game. Central Catholic has won three of the last four championships and is seeking its fifth straight trip to the championship game. Penn Hills is playing in the semifinals for the first times since 2008.
For the complete bracket, click on the link below.