It’s playoff time!
The District 10 football playoffs have arrived, with championship games in Class 4A and 6A and quarterfinal games in Class 1A, 2A and 3A.
Class 1A is a 6-team field, with top seeds Eisenhower and Reynolds getting byes, as is Class 2A, with Farrell and Sharpsville getting byes. Class 3A is an 8-team field.
Let’s dig in.
CLASS 6A CHAMPIONSHIP
(1) MCDOWELL vs. (2) BUTLER
This game is still a little bit up in the air due to the ongoing drama with the PIAA and Butler, but as of now, the Trojans and Golden Tornado are set to play at 7 p.m. Friday at Veterans Stadium in Erie.
The two teams met just two weeks ago, a 48-24 win for McDowell. In that game, McDowell jumped out to a 21-0 lead thanks to a pair of Artis Simmons touchdown runs and a touchdown pass from Ben Moore to Trey Goodwine.
Simmons had put together a terrific season, rushing for nearly 1,600 yards while twice earning D9andSports District 10 Jim Kelly Player of the Week Powered by the Allegheny Grille. He has run behind a strong offensive line, led by junior and Penn State commit Cooper Cousins.
When McDowell is rolling it starts with their offense, as they have scored at least 42 points in seven of their eight wins. Their two losses came at the hands of North Allegheny and Cathedral Prep, but they are long since in the rearview mirror, rattling off four-straight wins since the loss to Prep.
Butler, meanwhile, comes in with a record of 4-6. The Golden Tornado has dropped five-straight since a 37-20 win over Erie High. Those losses have come against Seneca Valley, Westinghouse, Cathedral Prep, McDowell and Greater Latrobe.
Senior quarterback Mac Schnur has put together a big season, passing for 1,898 yards and 22 touchdowns.
Deshawn Cox leads the ground game with 461 yards, while Cox has 432 yards receiving and four touchdowns and Braylon Littlejohn 554 yards receiving and six touchdowns.
CLASS 4A CHAMPIONSHIP
(1) MEADVILLE vs. (2) CORRY
The Bulldogs were a state quarterfinalist a year ago and have their sights set on another big postseason following a 9-1 regular season. That postseason begins on Friday (Franklin H.S., 7 p.m.) against 4-6 Corry. The two teams met to open the season, a 55-6 win for Meadville.
The recipe for the Bulldogs has been great defense and a strong running game. They have given up just 41 points in their nine wins (their lone loss was to McDowell), including four shutouts.
Brady Walker and Brighton Anderson have 64 and 54 tackles, respectively, while Walker has notched eight sacks, Anderson five interceptions and Nic Williams three interceptions.
Behind a strong offensive line, Khalon Simmons and Brady Walker have once again had terrific seasons. Simmons has rushed for 1,610 yards and 31 touchdowns, while Walker has 1,189 yards and 15 scores.
Corry rallied from an 0-3 start to get to four wins, and is coming off a 39-14 win over Titusville to close the regular season.
They feature a ground game that is led by Mason Savitz and Ethyn Allen, as well as a passing came led by quarterback Nolan Carey.
The Beavers have given up a combined 60 points in their four wins.
CLASS 3A QUARTERFINALS
(All games are on Friday)
(1) GROVE CITY vs. (8) FAIRVIEW at Farrell H.S.
Grove City emerged from the Region gauntlet that is Region 3 at 6-3, earning the top seed. They will take on a Fairview team that has played in a number of tight games, finishing the regular season at 5-5.
Grove City, the defending D10 3A champions, did not play in Week 10 but is coming off back-to-back wins against Sharpsville and Wilmington to close the regular season.
Quarterback Hunter Hohman has thrown for 1,352 yards and 14 touchdowns and has run for 319 yards and seven scores. Anthony Nemec leads the ground game with 752 yards and six touchdowns.
Hohman’s favorite targets are Nathan Greer (528 yards, 5 touchdowns) and Gavin Lutz (521 yards, 8 touchdowns).
Fairview enters the postseason following a 31-28 loss to Northwestern. Tyler Corbin has thrown for 777 yards and six touchdowns and also has 549 yards on the ground and nine scores.
Jared Gennuso leads the ground game with 591 yards and seven touchdowns, while Charles Chevalier has 566 yards and four touchdowns.
When Corbin goes to the air, Jeremy Frazao (567 yards, 5 touchdowns) is his top target.
(2) GENERAL MCLANE vs. (7) HICKORY at Edinboro
General McLane rattled off nine-straight wins since a season-opening loss to Slippery Rock and gets a Hickory team that is better than its 4-5 record would indicate.
The Lancers haven’t given up more than 20 points in any of their nine wins, and have intercepted 18 passes this season, led by Jace Walls’ five. Lance Laskey also has seven sacks and Kyle Cousins leads the team with 58 tackles.
Offensively, the Lancers get it done on the ground, led by quarterback Dylan Sheeder, who has rushed for 901 yards and nine touchdowns. Nine different GM players have at least one rushing touchdown this season.
When Sheeder (884 yards passing) goes to the air, Kyle Birkmire (356 yards, 6 TDs) and Laskey (319 yards, 4 TDs) are his top targets.
Hickory was 2-1 over its final three games, beating Grove City and Greenville and dropping a one-score game to Sharpsville.
Logan Woods has thrown for 1,300 yards and 11 touchdowns, spreading the ball around to Keenan Scullin (444 yards, 3 TDs), Luke Nevil (401 yards, 3 TDs), and Will Acrie (327 yards, 3 TDs).
Sean Kennedy has rushed for 277 yards and five touchdowns for the Hornets, who have allowed more than 28 points just once this season.
(3) OIL CITY vs. (6) SLIPPERY ROCK at Carter Field, Titusville
Both teams, the 7-2 Oilers and the 5-4 Rockets are coming off Week 10 byes.
By now, everyone knows about the rushing prowess of Ethen Knox behind his offensive line. Knox has set numerous records, rushing for 3,352 yards and rushing for at least 400 yards in a game six times, breaking a national record previously held by current Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry.
Knox has also totaled 37 rushing touchdowns, averaging 9.7 yards per carry.
The Oilers’ defense has been disruptive all season Kevin Pearsall leading the way with 70 tackles (17 for loss) and eight sacks. Brayden McFetridge has 63 tackles (17 for loss) and 11 sacks, while Knox has six interceptions and Dane Ley three.
They will be facing a Slippery Rock team that is led by dual-threat quarterback William Mokel. The Rockets reached the title game last season, and Mokel has put together another big season with 1,739 yards passing and 17 touchdowns, and 258 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
John Sabo has been one of D10’s best receivers with 585 yards and eight touchdowns, while Sam Schwartz has 321 receiving yards and Maddox Allen has three receiving touchdowns, as well as 691, yards rushing and five touchdowns.
(4) FORT LEBOEUF vs. (5) SHARON at Greenville H.S.
The 7-3 Fort LeBoeuf Bison meet 5-4 Sharon in an intriguing matchup.
Fort LeBoeuf has not given up more than 21 points in any of its seven wins this season, with Aiden Lesik leading the way with 73 tackles and Justin Leuschen notching 10 TFLs.
Offensively, the Bison get it done on the ground, with Leuschen putting together 1,300 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns, while Ryan Welka, Lesik, and Connor McChesney have all rushed for over 300 yards.
Sharon played in the ultra-competitive Region 3, notching wins over Hickory, Wilmington, Slippery Rock, and Greenville.
The Tigers have not given up more than 14 points in any of their wins.
Quarterback Mikey Rodriques has thrown for 781 yards and seven touchdowns and also rushed for 603 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Jayveerh White has been a workhorse on the ground for the Tigers, rushing for 1,077 yards and seven touchdowns.
CLASS 2A QUARTERFINALS
(Games on Saturday)
(4) SENECA vs. (5) NORTHWESTERN at Fort LeBoeuf H.S.
Seneca’s offense has been a well-oiled machine in helping the Bobcats get to 8-2, set to face off with the 6-4 Wildcats. The two teams met on Oct. 21, a 34-26 Seneca win.
Seneca has scored at least 40 points in six of its eight wins. Ryan Miller has put together a terrific season on the ground, eclipsing 2,000 yards (2,099) with 28 touchdowns, averaging 10.4 yards per carry.
Quarterback Nolan Seabury, meanwhile, has directed the offense with great efficiency, throwing for 1,001 yards and 12 touchdowns and also rushing for 795 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Seabury’s top target is Collin Libra (548 yards, 9 TDs).
Miller is also the leader of the defense with 108 tackles, while Libra has notched 88.
Northwestern is coming off a 31-28 win over Fairview to close the regular season and also owns a victory over Oil City.
Quarterback Lloyd Fountain broke the single-season school passing record and has thrown for 1,547 yards and 19 touchdowns, with Kolton Sutter (389 yards, 7 TDs), Logan Stagl (514 yards, 6 TDs), and Landon Wayne (472 yards, 6 TDs) his top targets.
Ben Campbell leads the ground game with 763 yards and four TDs, while Fountain also has 280 yards rushing and 10 TDs.
Stagl leads the defense with 100 tackles, while Sutter has been a ballhawk with seven interceptions.
(3) MERCYHURST PREP vs. (6) WILMINGTON at Veterans Stadium, Erie
Mercyhurst Prep has rattled off three straight wins to get to 6-4, not giving up a point in any of those games to Iroquois, Union City, and Mercer. They are a unit led by Thomas Langer and his 85 tackles (14 for loss) and Sean Sokolowski (75 tackles, 10 TFL).
Offensively, David Bahm has put together a terrific season with 1,667 yards passing and 21 touchdowns and 469 yards rushing, and six scores. Jeremy Ganska also has 463 yards rushing and six scores.
Ja’son Ellman (809 yards, 11 TDs) and Stephen Grayson (343 yards, 4 TDs) are Bahm’s top targets.
It’s been a tough season for the Greyhounds, who have lost five straight since a 3-1 start that included wins over Greenville, Mercer, and Hickory.
Ben Miller has rushed for 520 yards (seven touchdowns) and Tyler Mikulin (452 yards, 3 touchdowns) to lead the ground game.
Tuff McConahy has thrown for 619 yards and seven touchdowns, while Buddah Book has a team-leading 256 receiving yards.
CLASS 1A QUARTERFINALS
The Class 1A quarterfinals feature a pair of rematches from the regular season as No. 3 Lakeview takes on No. 6 Maplewood and No. 4 Cambridge Springs meets No. 5 Mercer.
Both games will be played on Saturday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.
(3) LAKEVIEW vs. (6) MAPLEWOOD at Farrell HS
Lakeview picked up a 24-7 win in Guys Mills when these two teams met in Week 4. The Sailors deployed a balanced rushing attack as three players, Cameron Pence, Mitchell Tingley, and Danik Hinkson each had more than 10 carries. Tingley led the way with 98 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. Pence had 51 yards and a score on 11 carries, and Hinkson had 39 yards on 14 carries. Pence also had a pick-six and Tingley connected on a 26-yard field goal.
Defensively, Lakeview intercepted Maplewood quarterback Andrew Proper six times and sacked him twice. Evan Sanford had three of those interceptions. For the Tigers, Ben Giliberto ran 10 times for 52 yards and Dominick Kinney broke off a 47-yard run. Proper threw a TD pass to Ethan Peterson.
For the season, Pence is 36-81 passing for 636 yards with five touchdowns and five interceptions. He’s also rushed 63 times for 305 yards and nine scores.
Tingley has 178 carries for 1,217 yards and eight TDs, while Hinkson has 67 totes for 388 yards and seven scores.
Sean Cole is the leading receiver with 10 catches for 106 yards. Tingley has seven grabs for 156 yards and a score, and Hinkson has five receptions for 167 yards and a TD.
Defensively, Tingley leads the way with 107 total tackles, a sack, and four interceptions. Gavin Krupa has 55 total tackles with a pick and three fumble recoveries. Aiden Osborne has 52 tackles (13.5 TFL) and 3.5 sacks. Luke Klonowski leads the Sailors with four sacks, and Sanford is tied with Tingley for the team lead in interceptions.
As a team, the Sailors have forced 30 turnovers, 17 interceptions, and 13 fumble recoveries.
For Maplewood, the loss to Lakeview was the second in a string of five straight after starting the season 2-0. That streak included losses to fellow Class 1A playoff teams Cambridge Springs, Reynolds, and Mercer.
Proper is 22-67 for 350 yards with five touchdowns against 14 interceptions. He’s also run 39 times for 98 yards.
Giliberto leads the ground game with 213 carries for 1,673 yards and 15 touchdowns. No other player has more than 20 carries for the season.
Ethan Peterson is the leading receiver with eight catches for 221 yards and three TDs. Kinney has six catches for 42 yards and a score.
Elliot Beuchat leads the Tigers’ defense with 97 tackles. Giliberto has 75 tackles (18 TFL) and shares the team lead with Peterson with four sacks each.
The Tigers have forced 12 turnovers, six interceptions, and six fumble recoveries.
(4) CAMBRIDGE SPRINGS vs. (5) MERCER at Meadville HS
The Blue Devils upended the Mustangs, 32-22, in a Week 9 matchup in Cambridge Springs.
Van Jones ran 17 times for 200 yards and two touchdowns, and Morgan Applebee ran in another. Kaiden Boozer hooked up with Preston Gorton for an 18-yard TD pass as well.
Daemyin Mattocks had a pair of rushing touchdowns and Nate Haines had a rushing score as well.
Applebee has gone 68-125 for 821 yards with 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He’s run 46 times for 106 yards and five scores.
Jones has run 106 times for 606 yards and five touchdowns. Brett Kania has 91 carries for 530 yards and four touchdowns.
Kania is also tied for the team lead with 18 receptions going for 271 yards and five touchdowns. Preston Gorton has 18 grabs for 309 yards and two scores. Jones has 14 catches for 126 yards and a TD, and Ethan Counasse has 12 receptions for 205 yards and three TDs.
Preston and Josh Gorton are tied for the team lead with 85 tackles each. Brandon Webster has 66 tackles and Boozer has 56. Tristen Mazzadra has 8.5 sacks.
The Mustangs don’t go to the air often, but when they do, Nate Haines is 12-25 for 182 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Haines has also run 68 times for 204 yards and four scores.
Mattocks is the leading rusher with 97 carries for 676 yards and 15 touchdowns. Carter Addison has run 70 times for 511 yards and five scores, and Nic Michael has 79 carries for 319 and two TDs.
Troy Bachman is the leading receiver with five catches for 110 yards and a touchdown, and Addison has four grabs for 47 yards.
*Mercer stats courtesy professorbriggs.com