The last time the Clairton Bears came up short on the scoreboard was in 2009. When Laurel won the season opener 15-8. After that loss Clairton went on to win a PIAA state record and current longest national winning streak, 63 games.
One of the biggest reasons for Clairton’s success the last four years is the 6-foot-2, 175-pound senior Tyler Boyd. As a three year starter his team went 48-0. Clairton won its fifth consecutive WPIAL Class A championship and fourth consecutive PIAA championship.
Boyd announced Saturday on the NBC broadcsast of the US Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio that he will be attending Pitt next fall. Boyd joins teamate Titus Howard as the newest Panthers who commited to Pitt before this season.
The four star recuit played every where on the field this season, playing at quarterback, defensive back and did punt and kick returns.
This season he finished with 2,567 yards rushing on 215 carries and caught 12 passes for 218 yards. Boyd had 51 touchdowns and 326 points scored this season.
He finished his career with 5,755 yards rushing and 117 career touchdowns, which is a WPIAL record.
HERSHEY, Pa. –A warm Friday night in New Castle, Pa a new high school football season was just underway when the Laurel Spartans shocked the defending WPIAL Champion Clairton in the 2009 season-opener 15-8. After that loss the Bears went unbeaten on their way to the WPIAL and State Championship that season.
1197 days since that lost on a cool Friday afternoon in Hershey, Pa the Clairton Bears haven’t ended a game without a victory, or a season without a championship.
Clairton defeated Dunmore 20-0 at HersheyPark Stadium and clinched the schools fourth consecutive state title. While the win extended the Bear’s nation-leading winning streak to 63 games it was done in a way the first 62 were not.
“We had long drives against them, and that’s unusual for us – we are more of a big play team.” Said Clairton coach Tom Nola.
It almost seemed as if the Bears played most of the game with a 12th man; the clock – as the Bears held the football for over 30 minutes, compared to Dunmore’s 17-mintues.
Offensively, Tyler Boyd (117 yards on 20 carries) got things started with a 5-yard run to give the Bears a 6-0 lead with 8 minutes to go in the opening quarter.
Clairton’s defense held Dunmore to just 79-yards rushing and 115 total yards, while compiling 432 of their own.
Armani Ford capped off another scoring drive with a 21-yard touchdown pass to Terrish Webb giving Clairton a 14-0 halftime lead.
Ford would seal the deal with a 29-yard run with 4 minutes remaining in the 4th quarter.
The game marked the first time two 600-game winning programs faced off in a State Championship, in any classification. Dunmore has won 618 games in its history and Clairton, who joined the 600-win club this year, now has 613 victories.
The freshman on that ‘09 team will be walking in caps and gowns this spring with eight rings on their fingers…eight, representing the four district and four state championship’s they’ve won in their high school career’s.
“When I was a freshman I was just a sideline kid, the time will come for these younger classmen to get their shot” Bears five-star recruit, Tyler Boyd said.
For head coach Tom Nola, who has spent most of his career with the Bears, improved his overall record to 146-47. When asked what is in store for his Bears in 2013, Nola took a deep breath and said;
“Wait until next year and go for 64…”
After 15 weeks of football, it all comes to a close this weekend at Hersheypark Stadium as Pennsylvania will crown four state champions. The WPIAL will be well represented as three district 7 champs, Aliquippa, Clairton, and North Allegheny, will have a chance a state gold.
In class A the Clairton Bears currently have a 62 game winning streak and will be in search of their fourth consecutive title. They will face the Dunmore Bucks from District 2. The last time Dunmore made it to the state championship was in 2007 in class "AA". They went on to lose that game to Terrell Pryor and the Jeannette Jayhawks 49-21. This season the Bucks come in with a 14-1 record, with their only loss coming back in week 4 when they were shutout 21-0 by Old Forge. Clairton is lead by superstar athlete Tyler Boyd, who accounted for 3 touchdowns in last week's semi final game again Port Allegheny. The Bears hope to get Titus Howard back in the line who missed last Friday with dislocated elbow. Kickoff is set for Friday at 1:00pm.
The Class AAA game is the only one not involving a WPIAL team. That happened when Cathedral Prep (14-0) of District 10 who defeated West Allegheny 27-13 at Erie Veterans Memorial Stadium in the Quarterfinals. The next week they took care of Bishop McDevitt by the score of 38-3 to make it to the championship. Cathedral Prep will be making their first trip to Hershey since they won the AAAA title in 2000 against Central Bucks West. Their opponent is defending champion, Archbishop Wood from District 12. Archbishop Wood comes in with a 12-2 record and will be looking to repeat as champions as they defeated Bishop McDevitt 52-0 last season. This game kicks off at 7:00 pm on Friday.
The first game on Saturday will be the AA Championship and will also be the only game that features two teams coming in with undefeated records. Aliquippa comes in having sent all but three games to the mercy rule. Last week they were in a battle with Richland and still prevailed 37-21 lead by Terry Swanson and Devron Henry. Wyomissing Area from district 3 defeated Imhotep Charter 35-13. Imhotep Charter had dominated all their opponents to that point, including knocking off "AA" power Southern Columbia. Kickoff is set for 12:00 pm.
The final game of the 2012 high school football calendar will be the Class AAAA Championship between North Allegheny and Coatsville of District 1. North Allegheny is coming in with an undefeated record and will be looking for their second title in three years after defeating La Salle College 21-0 in 2010. Coatsville is making their first trip to the state championship and is coming in with a 13-2 record. Kickoff is set for 6:00 pm
The Champs Sports Network will be in Chocolate Town with coverage of all the state championships.
Clairton - 58
Sto-Rox - 21
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