Protime’s Pigskin Parlance – Milestones, Record Breakers & Game Shakers – Top Rusher Edition

Tagged under: News, pfn, Protime Predictions

Phil Myers | October 25, 2023

Protime’s weekly column that will attempt to get readers up to date on current football facts, stats, and miscellaneous tidbits of information from across the entire state of Pennsylvania.  My crack staff of one will peruse some, but not all newspapers and other sources for hopefully what will be up to date scoop on the previous week’s games, records, and hitherto unknown factoids of the sort.


Trivia question of the week: Mount Carmel is first in the state in all-time wins with 897.  Who is second with 875 victories?

Program Wins Milestones

Two District 3 teams reached a milestone plateau on Friday.  They are the Wilson West Lawn Bulldogs and the Central York Panthers.  Wilson notched their 600th career football win when they beat JP McCaskey and Central York reached the 400-win mark by dumping Reading.  Sincere congratulations to both teams.  As a side note, Wilson lost their first two games and have roared back to win 7 straight.  The Bulldogs now have gone 60 years without a losing record!  Aliquippa’s Quips reached 51 years in a row without a losing record this year.

Coaching Milestones

Fred Mozzocio of Neshannock reached the century mark in career wins.  He has now guided the Lancers to 100 triumphs.  As most of you may know, Jim Roth of Southern Columbia reached a milestone of sorts when he got tossed from the Tigers’ game with Wyoming Area this past Friday.  It was the only time he ever was thrown out of a game.  Protime almost never knocks referees but the winningest coach in PA history and the country’s #5 all-time winningest coach deserves a little more respect than that, especially considering what actually happened.

Team Achievements

Karns City rushed for 601 yards on 41 carries.  That’s an average of just about 15 yards a try.  Downingtown East pitched their 5th shutout in a row and their 6th of the year.  Yes, they’ve only been scored on in two games.  (They’ve played 8 games.)  State College scored 26 of the 32 points the Cougars have given up.  Thirty-three teams are still unbeaten heading into the last week of the regular season.  That number will diminish as a few of them play each other.  (See the games of the week at the end of this article.)  This fact may not be an achievement, but Upper St. Clair has a good chance of missing the WPIAL 5A playoffs with a record of 8-2 if they win this week, even though they beat two 6A teams plus one of the teams that will beat them out for a playoff spot.

Downingtown East defense in white and yellow.

Individual Achievements

John Tracy of Aliquippa scored five touchdowns five different ways.  How many times does that happen?  Tracy returned a fumble, returned a punt, had a kickoff return for a TD, rushed for another, and caught a pass for a score.  North East Grape Picker Jamari Curlett returned a kickoff 99 yards to the house.  That is the max you can return a kick of any kind in PA high school football.  Once the ball is in the end zone or the foot touches the goal line the play becomes a touchback by rule.  Only the defense can have 100-yard returns of fumbles and interceptions.  And to the best of Protime’s knowledge, those returns are only officially recognized as 100-yard returns no matter how deep in the end zone the ball was.

Record Breakers

Let’s start with Armand Hill who rewrote the record books at West Mifflin.  He dashed for 499 yards and 5 touchdowns on 27 totes.  He has 810 yards in the last two weeks.  AND he was not the starting RB until an injury.  AND he is only a freshman.  Cole Bartram of the Northern York Polar Bears was one yard better as he raced around the field for 500 yards and scored 9 TDs, both Northern York records.  Jonah Williamson became the single season passing yardage record holder for the Trinity Hillers (D-7).  Hunter Hohman of Grove City is now the career passing leader with 6,144 yards.  Braylon Wagner, a sophomore at Redbank Valley set a school record for single season TD passes with 38 and yardage with 2,374.  Their opponent this week, Central Clarion, has a junior QB (Jase Ferguson) who has thrown for 37 TD passes this year and that is a record that includes the old Clarion and Clarion-Limestone teams.  Come to think of it, has there ever been a PA regular season football game where the two QBs have combined for 75 touchdown passes?  Tucker Teats of Selinsgrove set the Seal record for rushing yardage, single season rushing TDs (24), and single season total TDs (30).  Shamar Williams of Chester returned an interception 97 yards for a Clipper school record.  Ethen Knox (Oil City) galloped for 345 yards and 4 TDs on 55 carries last weekend.  Matt Machalik of Palmerton became their leading single season rusher of all-time and he is their quarterback!

Matt Machalik #2

Top Rushers

Although Armand Hill of West Mifflin didn’t break the WPIAL record for rushing yards in a game, his 499 yards is second all-time and that’s saying a lot especially since he’s a freshman.  The week before last Ethen Knox became District 10’s all-time leading rusher by breaking Journey Brown’s (Meadville) record of 7,027 yards.  Knox currently has over 7,400 and counting.  According to MaxPreps, Alex Achenbach (Williams Valley) is leading all rushers with 2,137 yards.  Knox is second with 1,885 and he missed a game due to an injury.  Luke Stevenosky of Minersville is third with 1,843 yards, while Matt Machalik of Palmerton is fourth at 1,793 yards.  Stevenosky leads the state in rushing touchdowns with 29.  Knox and Machalik have 28.  Evan Wright of Mars and Cade Sawyer of Southern Lehigh are tied for fourth with 25 touchdowns apiece.

Games of the Week

Games featuring two undefeated teams include Richland (9-0) at Central-Martinsburg (9-0), Steelton-Highspire (9-0) at West Perry (9-0), Central Clarion (9-0) at Redbank Valley (9-0), and Southern Lehigh (9-0) at Northwestern Lehigh (9-0).  All of those teams are ranked in PFN’s Top Ten in their respective classes.  Another game of note that is of extreme interest has Erie Cathedral Prep, a 5A school, visiting 2A Farrell, the #1 team at that classification.

Unusual Play

Although this did not occur in PA, Protime thought it worthy of note.  The punter from East Central High School in San Antonio, Texas (Austin Vivier) had his punt blocked straight up in the air, he subsequently caught it and ran 99 yards for a touchdown.  He was correctly only given credit for an 86-yard TD because the line of scrimmage was the 14.  Protime never heard of a punter catching his blocked kick and running that far for a score.

Answer to the trivia question: The Easton Red Rovers.

Follow Phil Myers on Twitter: @Protime_PFN

Follow PA Football News on Twitter @PaFootballNews


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