No. 2 Clairton crushes Shenango, 68-7
Sometimes, there are simply no words to describe the dominance of a football team.
Seventh-seeded Shenango coach Mike Commesso was speechless after second-seeded Clairton routed the Wildcats, 68-7, in the WPIAL Class A quarterfinals Friday night at Chartiers-Houston.
Clairton (11-0) will face No. 3 Neshannock (11-0) next week in the semifinals.
“They just have so many weapons and can score so quickly,” Commesso said. “It’s, uh, I just don’t have the words to explain it.”
Clairton has scored 740 points in 11 games, good for an average of 67.3. They are tied for fourth all-time in WPIAL scoring history, sharing that spot with 2012 Clairton, which won both WPIAL and PIAA gold.
The 2007 Jeannette Jayhawks scored a record 860 points.
Bears sophomore running back Lamont Wade led the attack with 251 yards from scrimmage, and quarterback Ryan Williams threw for 175 yards. Clairton raced to a 46-7 halftime lead and never looked back.
“We have a ton of skill, as we’ve been saying all year,” Clairton coach Wayne Wade said. “You try to stop Lamont and other guys will get you. This is nothing new.”
Shenango (7-4) made its intentions known early as it attempted to establish a power run game. The Wildcats were forced to punt after gaining one first down on their opening drive and watched Clairton march 75 yards in six plays capped by an Aaron Mathews’ 10-yard scoring run off a jet sweep. Wade’s 2-point conversion run made it 8-0 Bears early in the first.
Raymone Clifford made his first of two fumble recoveries for the Bears on Shenango’s next possession after Wildcats quarterback Evan Kendall lost the football. On fourth-and-goal from the 18, Williams fired a strike to Noah Hamlin on a post pattern in the end zone.
Clairton showed off some razzle-dazzle on its next possession as Williams threw a lateral to Mathews who then lofted a perfect strike to James Hines for a 65-yard score.
“He (Matthews) kind of hit the wall a little bit in the middle of the season,” Wade said. “We really weren’t showcasing him. But he had a good game last week and a good game tonight. It’s good to get him back.”
Junior running back Harrison Dreher, in his first action since being injured early in the season, got into the act when he added a 3-yard score. With Clairton ahead 38-0, Shenango marched 74 yards in nine plays. On fourth-and-goal from the Bears 5, Kendall executed a shovel pass to Hunter Waskin, who scooted in for the score. Clairton led 38-7 late in the half.
“We go out every game and try to get a goose-egg,” Wade said. “That’s our motto. But that is part of the game, they (Shenango) have a good team. My hat’s off to that team.”
But Wade made sure Clairton would reach the 40-point mark in the half when he caught a screen pass and scampered 62 yards for a touchdown.
“He has a ton of speed and is probably the fastest kid on the field in every game we play,” coach Wade said.
David Whipkey is a freelance writer.