ShareThis Page
Young Uniontown football team hopes to grow |

Young Uniontown football team hopes to grow

| Thursday, August 27, 2015 4:57 p.m
Barry Reeger | Trib Total Media
Uniontown running back Ariene Washington runs through a drill at Bill Power Stadium on Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015, in Uniontown.
Barry Reeger | Trib Total Media
Uniontown quarterback Phil Mosely passes at Bill Power Stadium on Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015, in Uniontown.

John Fortugna will have to be patient with the Uniontown football team.

According to Fortugna, the Red Raiders may start as many as seven sophomores as the team tries to rebound from a one-win season and return to the playoffs for the first time since 2009.

“We are going to work with them and work with them,” Fortugna said. “We’re going to have a lot of repetition. We will spend extra time making sure kids are doing things the right way and not developing bad habits.”

Fortugna is hoping a core group of seniors will be able to provide leadership, as well as be catalysts on offense and defense. Running back Ariene Washington should see plenty of touches after rushing for nearly 1,000 yards as a junior.

“Last year was really his first year at running back,” Fortugna said. “Ariene’s a big back at 6-foot-1, 200 pounds. He was a linebacker when he was a sophomore. We ran north and south a lot last year, but this year, we’re changing to more of a spread. We weren’t a great a passing team, and we put the ball in his hands a lot. He’s a power runner, and he runs very hard every carry.”

Phil Mosely will be under center. Mosely saw action last season at quarterback along with graduate Lyric Ellis, and will be counted on to make the spread offense go.

“He does a good job for us,” Fortugna said. “We think he can be very quick in the spread offense. He’s been working on reads all summer.”

Mosely will have Ben Wilson and Christian Forsythe as targets. Both have more experience on the defensive side of the ball, but Fortugna thinks both will play important roles on offense.

“Ben and Christian will both probably play both ways,” Fortugna said. “They’re both hard workers and good leaders.”

Defensively, Uniontown’s most experienced unit is its secondary. Mosely and Wilson likely will start. Regardless of what personnel the Red Raiders have on the field, Fortugna knows his team must become better fundamentally.

“We weren’t very good at tackling last year,” Fortugna said.

Uniontown will compete in Class AAA’s Big 9 Conference, along with Albert Gallatin, Belle Vernon, Elizabeth Forward, Laurel Highlands, Ringgold, Thomas Jefferson, Trinity, West Mifflin and Yough.

“All the years I’ve been coaching, this is probably my youngest team,” Fortugna said. “We’re going to take it one game at a time and see what happens. We’re not going to talk about the playoffs or number of wins.”

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.