The WPIAL football playoffs have reached the semifinals, meaning eight teams are just a win away from Heinz Field. Before they get there, they all have questions to answer tonight.
Class AAAA Central Catholic (11-0) vs. North Allegheny (10-1) at Fox Chapel Key question: Can Central Catholic handle NA’s oversized O-line led by tackle Justin Haser? Prediction: Central Catholic 24-21
Class AAAA Woodland Hills (8-3) vs. North Hills (10-1) at Pine-Richland Key question: How much of a difference will Lafayette Pitts make? Woodland Hills’ star senior was injured when North Hills beat the Wolverines, 7-0, in Week 2. Prediction: Woodland Hills 21-14
Class AAA Montour (11-0) vs. Mars (10-1) at Chartiers Valley Key question: Who rushes for more yards: Montour’s Julian Durden or Mars’ Austin Miele? The rushing champ probably leaves with the victory. Prediction: Montour 28-21
Class AAA Thomas Jefferson (10-1) vs. Central Valley (8-3) at North Allegheny Key question: Central Valley has upset two of this year’s surprising teams (Ringgold and Knoch), but can they topple a WPIAL giant? Prediction: Thomas Jefferson 24-14
Class AA Aliquippa (11-0) vs. Ford City (11-0) at Seneca Valley Key question: Is Ford City’s defense as strong as its record would indicate? There will be no better test than top-seeded Aliquippa. Prediction: Aliquippa 27-14
Class AA Beaver Falls (10-1) vs. South Fayette (11-0) at West Allegheny Key question: What wins: offense or defense? South Fayette QB Christian Brumbaugh, who has 69 career TD passes, says offense. Prediction: South Fayette 28-20
Class A Clairton (11-0) vs. Springdale (10-1) at Yough Key question: Will Springdale score a point? Clairton’s first two playoff opponents have not. Prediction: Clairton 42-7
Class A Rochester (11-0) vs. Avonworth (10-1) at Ambridge Key question: Can Avonworth’s defense slow Rochester’s three-headed rushing attack and prevent another Clairton-Rochester meeting at Heinz Field? Prediction: Rochester 20-7
All games are at 7:30 p.m.
– Chris Harlan (firstname.lastname@example.org)