Two Class A games will receive ample attention Friday night. Laurel plays at Rochester in a Big Seven Conference contest while Clairton is at Fort Cherry in a Black Hills game. Those teams comprise four of the five sports in the Class A rankings.
Clairton (2-0, 3-1) at Fort Cherry (2-0, 4-0)
Since losing at Laurel in Week 1, Clairton – the defending WPIAL Class A champion and PIAA runner-up – has run roughshod over three opponents. Monessen, Frazier and Bentworth were outscored by a combined 161-7. The Bears enter Jim Garry Stadium with the most potent offense in WPIAL Class A, having scored 169 points.
Fort Cherry earned recognition with its victory at Serra Catholic last week. Led by talented underclassmen and a solid offensive line, the Rangers ranked second in WPIAL Class A with 163 points.
Beth-Center (2-0, 3-1) at Monessen (2-0, 2-2)
Through four games, Beth-Center's defense has been excellent. Not only do the Bulldogs yield an average of 8.0 points per game, the defense and special teams find ways to put up points. Last year, Beth-Center returned an interception for a touchdown on the game's third play en route to a 35-13 victory. The Bulldogs went unbeaten in the Tri-County South.
No doubt Monessen wants to extract revenge and win a conference championship. Those chances can take a turn for the better by beating B-C. If the Greyhounds do, it will be their first victory against a team with a win this year.
Canon-McMillan (0-0, 2-2) at Upper St. Clair (0-0, 3-1)
Can Canon-McMillan put together two wins in a row? Can the Big Macs defense build off last week's impressive performance against an inferior team? Can Upper St. Clair bounce back from losing handily to Pittsburgh Central Catholic? Will the winner of this game contend for a Great Southern Conference title?
Some of those questions will be answered Friday night. Who knows, maybe this year's game can top last year's?
In 2008, USC went for a two-point conversion pass in overtime in hopes of stealing on in Canonsburg. The Big Macs broke up the pass and came away with a thrilling 28-27 victory.