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PREVIEW: Woodland Hills vs. McKeesport (PA) – Game of the Week

September 6, 2012

The Woodland Hills Wolverines will host the McKeesport Tigers in a clash of 4A schools. Upwards of 6,000 fans are expected to fill the stands of Woodland Hills Wolvarena to witness Pittsburgh high school football at its best.

Woodland Hills finished last year with a 6-4 overall record going 4-2 in the WPIAL 4A Southeastern Conference. The Wolverines were handed an unexpected loss in the first round of the playoffs last season to Pine-Richland. From that team 8 all-conference players graduated leaving head coach George Novak with some holes to fill. Coach Novak has been coaching at Woodland Hills ever since its creation in 1987 (entering his 26th season). Since then, the Wolverines have won 5 WPIAL titles and feature the most players in the NFL than any other high school in the country. The Wolverine offense features a couple two-way players led by senior Alex Beasley. Beasley was a first-team all-conference linebacker last year and this year will lineup as full back as well. Junior quarterback Cody McClelland is expected to have a big year. He will have plenty of talent to throw to with junior Harry Randall and his key receiver senior Tom Green. Randall will play defensive back as well. Senior Jawan Turner was all-conference last year and will play on the line on both sides of the ball. Junior Ron Brown will be featured at running back as the Wolverines look for their 6th WPIAL title this season.

Jim Ward is entering his 3rd season as the head coach of the McKeesport Tigers. He has led the Tigers to a 14-6 overall record in his first 2 seasons, but he is still looking for his 1st playoff win. The Tigers only return 6 starters from last year’s team, but that may be all they need. Their offense will be highlighted by senior quarterback Eddie Stockett (University of Akron commit) who threw for 1,772 yards and 6 touchdowns last season. Stockett benefited greatly when the run-oriented offense was changed to a spread offense. The change helped make him one of the best passing quarterbacks in the WPIAL. He will have junior Jaquan Davidson at wide receiver and senior Hodari Christian at running back returning from last year. Christian has committed to play at West Virginia University and will play linebacker as well. The Tigers also return senior lineman Brenndan Green, junior Jaylin Short at center, junior Jawan Hill on the offensive/defensive line and senior Aaron Knight at wide receiver and cornerback. McKeesport is definitely a team to watch in the Class 4A Foothills Conference.

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