Already halfway through the season, we are starting to get a feel of the serious contenders in the WPIAL. Here are our WPIAL Power Rankings for each classification. As always, be sure to follow me on twitter @WPIAL_Insider.
1) Central Catholic: After blowing out Seneca Valley, the Vikes remain #1 in the WPIAL. However, we get to see them finally go head to head with Pine Richland this week. This has been brewing for a long time.
2) Pine-Richland: Maybe they were a victim of looking ahead a week, but Pine-Richland was in a dog-fight with Bethel Park. They play big in big games, I expect them to give #1 Central Catholic everything they got this Friday.
3) North Allegheny: I still think their loss to Central Catholic wasn’t what NA has, because they were missing key starters. I think if they see them again the game is much different.
4) Penn Hills: Penn Hills continues to show their high-powered offense. Not too much shake-ups in the Top 4 this week.
5) Bethel Park: Seneca Valley lost, Bethel Park lost, and Hempfield lost. Nobody in 6A really wants to claim this #5 spot. Granted, Hempfield lost their #5 ranking due to a suspect call at the goal line in the final play of the game to lose the contest. Bethel Park almost upset #2 Pine Richland. They are deserving this week.
Dropped out: #5 Hempfield
1) Upper St Clair: USC retains the top spot in 5A after dominating Fox Chapel 35-0. I’m hearing their star player Thomas Vissman is banged up though. We’ll keep an eye out to see what is going on there.
2) Penn Trafford: The Warriors, like USC dominated a weak opponent this weak. They’re steady at #2.
3) West Allegheny: West A is right up there with USC and PT. They got their first mercy rule of the season vs. Baldwin this week.
4) Woodland Hills: That loss to Penn Trafford really hurts them, and they got exposed a little bit. Never count out the Wolverines down the stretch though.
5) Kiski: Im not sure what to think right now. Kiski dropped Canon Mac in Week 0. They continue to rattle off solid wins. They beat Franklin Regional this year, who just upset Armstrong. The Cavs are rolling and looking good.
Dropped out: #3 Armstrong
On the Bubble: Mckeesport, Armstrong, Gateway
1) Thomas Jefferson: Wake me up when TJ plays Belle Vernon. They are absolutely dismantling their opponents this season, outscoring them 223-14.
2) South Fayette: 5-0 and Coach Rossi has them rolling. Junior QB Drew Saxton gets better every week.
3) West Mifflin: 227-17. They’re outscoring their opponents by one more point that TJ. The Big Nine conference has a lot of top teams, as well as a lot of bottom feeders.
4) Belle Vernon: Seriously, the Big Nine has some great teams, but the way BV, Tj, and WM are rolling through opponents either speaks very highly of their game or very poorly of their opponents.
5) New Castle: What a boring week in 5A. Absolutely no shakeups here. New Castle dominated Indiana this week. The Hurricanes are 4-1 with a Week 0 loss to Aliquippa.
On the bubble: Mars, Blackhawk
1) Beaver: What an absolute shoot out the Bobcats were in against Keystone Oaks. It was Darius Wise vs Alex Smith. Wise rushed for over 400 and passed for over 100 totaling eight total TDs. It was a great game to watch.
2) Central Valley: The Warriors had a convincing win against a strong Quaker Valley squad. Their defense will pose a lot of problems for teams.
3) Aliquippa: After a sluggish two weeks, the Quips got back on track beating Ellwood City 33-0.
4) Derry: Derry is 5-0 with five solid wins. They look to be the team to beat in the Interstate Conference.
5) Keystone Oaks: I cant drop KO out of the Top-5 after the performance Duquesne commit Alex Smith put up against Beaver. They battled for four quarters.
On the Bubble: Hopewell, Beaver Falls, Quaker Valley, Mt. Pleasant, Freeport
1) Steel Valley: The scariest part about the Ironmen this year is they look like they are getting better every week. They might run away with 2A.
2) Wash High: Another dub for the Prexies. They are still a solid #2.
3) Neshannock: They had a great game with former #4 East Allegheny. EA was up 22-21 before Neshannock scored the final 29 points of the game.
4) Chartiers-Houston: Char-Houston is 4-1 and they had a tight game with Burgettstown. Their one loss came at the hands of Jeannette.
5) East Allegheny: I cant drop them EA boys out of this ranking. If things fall differently in that third Q vs Neshannock, they very well could win that game.
On the Bubble: North Catholic
1) Clairton: Clairton continues to roll, and Noah Hamlin seems to be the X Factor of this team
2) Jeannette: Gio Vonne Sanders is quietly having himself a year. Hes a senior to keep an eye on.
3) Rochester: 49-0 vs Cornell? Another great game for the Rams. The Big 7 matchup of the year is coming up next week vs #4 Northgate.
4) Northgate: Northgate has the home field advantage vs Rochester this week. They just dismantled Sto Rox 40-7 this week.
5) Fort Cherry: 4-0 and still rolling. Fort Cherry and Carmichaels seem to be the top dogs in the Tri-County South Conference.
On the bubble: Carmichaels.