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SEEKING REVENGE: Central Clarion Eager to Wash Away Bad Taste From Loss to Westinghouse Last Season When the Two Teams Meet Again on Friday

CLARION, Pa. (EYT/D9) — It was a disappointing loss. A gut punch for the Central Clarion football team.

The 44-8 setback to Westinghouse in the PIAA Class 2A playoffs a season ago stuck with the Wildcats. It motivated them through the offseason and camp and through a campaign in which they cut a swath of destruction week after week and through foe after foe.

(Pictured above, Central Clarion coach Dave Eggleton talks with his team at Cupples Stadium in Pittsburgh after the Wildcats’ loss to Westinghouse a year ago. Central Clarion has another crack at the Bulldogs on Friday at PennWest Clarion)

And now, a year later, Central Clarion gets another crack at the District 8 champion Bulldogs, who are every bit as good as the one the Wildcats faced 12 months ago.

“That game last year has driven these guys to put the work in to get where we’re at right now,” said Central Clarion coach Dave Eggleton. “I feel like our guys match up pretty well. It’s a different year and I think the different environment’s gonna help us.”

Central Clarion football coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Redbank Chevrolet and DuBrook.


Last year the game was in Cupples Stadium on the South Side of Pittsburgh. That is Westinghouse’s stomping grounds and the Bulldogs certainly had the home field advantage.

This year, however, the game is at PennWest Clarion — a place Central Clarion is certainly very familiar with.

“We certainly hope we can take advantage of that,” Eggleton said.

Central Clarion quarterback Jase Ferguson hopes to be able to take advantage of the wealth of weapons around him against Westinghouse, which also has a fair share of athletes.

Ferguson has enjoyed a big junior campaign — as have the rest of the Wildcats — throwing for 2,555 yards and 43 touchdowns.

He has four receivers in Dawson Smail, Tommy Smith, Mason Burford and Brady Quinn who are game-breakers. Smail and Burford each have 14 touchdowns receptions.

And Ferguson can beat a team with his legs. He has 774 yards rushing and nine TDs as the Wildcats use a running-back-by-committee system.

It works well.

Eggleton is hoping to take Westinghouse “into the deep end of the pool” and see if the Bulldogs can swim.

“Last week against Brookville (a 63-18 win in the District 9 Class 2A championship game) I think we really wore them down,” Eggleton said. “We did the same thing to Redbank Valley (in 35-14 win in Week 10). I’m excited for that opportunity against Westinghouse and I want to hopefully get them to that point.”

That won’t be easy.

Westinghouse crafted a challenging non-City League schedule this season.

The Bulldogs played Class 6A Butler and won 36-7. They also squared off against Class 5A Hollidaysburg and won that game, too, 30-22.

Last week against Berlin Brothersvalley, the District 5 champion that came into the game at 10-1, Westinghouse jumped out to a 37-6 lead and cruised to the 37-20 victory.

Quarterback Khalil Green was 10-of-13 passing for 149 yards and two touchdowns. He also gained 106 yards and scored two more times on the ground for Westinghouse (10-0).

The Bulldogs made history last season, becoming the first City League team to play for a PIAA championship since 1997. Westinghouse lost, but returned a fair share of talent from that roster.

It also gave the members of the team a renewed sense of purpose.

Return to the state final. Win it this time.

“We’re just a family,” Khalil Green told WPXI. “We stick together even through rough times.”

There haven’t been too many rough times on the field this season so far for Westinghouse.

The Bulldogs also have a quality 28-0 win over perennial District 7 power Clairton.

“Obviously, they’re a very good football team,” Eggleton said. “But we’ve been there now. We’ve seen it. They know what to expect going in. So they’re excited for the challenge.”

Central Clarion football coverage on Explore and is brought to you by Redbank Chevrolet and DuBrook.