Montour rolls over Mars
Julian Durden was cold. Freezing, actually.
While watching the Mars offense chew up nearly nine minutes to open the second half of the teams’ WPIAL Class AAA semifinal Friday at Chartiers Valley, Montour’s running back began to sprint up and down the sideline to get warm.
Once Durden actually got on the field after a Mars touchdown, he carried five times for 35 yards and scored on a 5-yard run, which helped seal a 35-14 victory for Montour and a trip to Heinz Field.
“Most of the time, it’s just a mindset to keep yourself warm,” said Durden, who finished with 25 carries for 108 yards. “When you get tight, that’s how you pull something, so you just have to run up and down the sideline.”
Montour (12-0) advanced to next Saturday’s WPIAL Class AAA final against Central Valley. The last time the Spartans reached Heinz Field, they suffered a 34-0 loss to Thomas Jefferson in 2007.
While Durden provided a punch at the appropriate time, junior quarterback Dillon Buechel was consistently spectacular. Despite being sick this entire week, Buechel connected on 10 of 15 passes for 223 yards and four touchdowns.
Buechel, though, was in no mood to pat himself on the back, instead turning his attention to next week.
“All that individual stuff out the window,” said Buechel, who eclipsed the 2,000-yard mark for the season. “We have a game next Saturday, and we have to get a win.”
Junior Darren Massey caught three passes for 110 yards and a pair of first-half scores, while sophomore Devin Wilson added four for 39, including a beautiful 10-yard touchdown on a fade route in the right corner of the end zone.
“That was one of the best catches I’ve seen in a long time,” said Montour coach Lou Cerro of Wilson’s grab. “I keep forgetting he’s a sophomore.”
Buechel found Massey on a short slant with 4:47 left in the first quarter. After catching the pass just behind Mars’ linebackers, Massey wormed his way through the secondary before breaking away down the left side.
Mars answered with a 74-yard drive on only five plays, one of them a 66-yard run from Austin Miele, who finished with 163 rushing yards. Miele scored on a 2-yard run, but the extra-point attempt was blocked.
Montour went ahead, 14-6, with 5:51 left in the first half after a 46-yard hookup from Buechel to Massey.
Less than four minutes later, Buechel found a wide-open Aaron McGee for a 64-yard score, giving the Spartans a 21-6 advantage at the break.
Montour vs. Mars 11/20/10
Montour defeats Mars, 35-14, in a WPIAL Class semifinal Friday November 19, 2010 at Chartiers Valley.