Upper St. Clair Takes Care Of Business On The Road

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In terms of seeding, there was only one upset in the Class 5A football playoffs on Friday.

The No. 9 Upper St. Clair Panthers (7-4) traveled to No. 8 North Hills (6-5) for the first round of the WPIAL playoffs and came away with a convincing 34-16 win.

On the first play of scrimmage, North Hills fumbled the ball, giving the Panthers possession on the Indians’ 19-yard line. A couple plays later, quarterback Ethan Dahlem scored a rushing touchdown from a yard out to put USC up 7-0.

After a three-and-out on the next North Hills possession, Dahlem connected with Mateo Cepulio for a 53-yard touchdown pass to go up 14-0 in the first quarter.

Upper St Clair continued to play physical defense and establish the run. Dahlem rushed for two more touchdowns before the half, giving the Panthers a 27-7 advantage at the break.

David Pantelis took the second half opening kick all the way to the North Hills 26. A couple plays later, Heath Erdos added to the Panther lead with a 14-yard touchdown run.

The defense was lead by Danny Harkleroad with 8.5 tackles, Brandon Shearer with 7.5 and Brandon Coe with six.

Upper St. Clair will face No. 1 Penn-Trafford (10-1) in the Class 5A WPIAL Quarterfinals on Friday at 7 p.m. at a site to be determined.