UnitedHealthcare Health insurance that includes all Western PA hospitals
Friday August 19 2022
Leave this field empty.

Pittsburgh Sports Report Game of the Week

PSR Logo
Return to Prominence - 2010 Blue Devils Begin Climb Against Pine-Richland Friday Night

It seems like just yesterday that the Mount Lebanon football team was challenging the WPIAL's best in quad-A football.

Unfortunately for the blue and gold faithful, “yesterday” was five years ago—the last time the Blue Devils finished with an above .500 record, and won a game in the playoffs.

Coming off a 5-5 season in 2009—and a combined 15-24 the past four years—Mount Lebanon has seen its share of misfortune lately, while several neighbors have profited from extremely successful campaigns.

After playing the understudy to Great Southern conference foes Upper St. Clair and Bethel Park, both of whom won WPIAL titles—USC in 2006 and Bethel in 2008—the Blue Devils are once again on the prowl. This season could very well be the year they wreak havoc on the conference once again.With a crop of talented players returning, and a handful of new faces with big-time ability, Mount Lebanon has one of its best teams in years.

Anchored by their two D-1 bound stars in 6-7, 295-pound senior offensive tackle Tim Cwalina (Virginia), and 6-5, 235-pound senior tight end/defensive end Paul Lang (Michigan State), the Blue Devils boast plenty of beef on the line, which does nothing but benefit their talented backfield duo of running back Luke Hagy and fullback Devin Lauer.

Hagy, who was the catalyst of the ground game a year ago, nearly eclipsed the 1,000 yard plateau as a junior. A safe bet would be that the 6-0, 185-pound back pushes past that milestone this year, running behind an experienced offensive line, including Cwalina and 6-3, 230-pound senior Christian Schultz, who was a member of the all-conference team last season.

At quarterback stands junior Pat Goff, a dual-threat play-caller who started every game for the Blue Devils last season. He will be throwing to the one and only unproven part of the offensive unit, a receiving corps that lost two starters last year, including receptions and receiving yards leader Mike Martin.

Unproven, however, is a word you won't hear much when it comes to Mount Lebanon's defense, which returns seven starters. Three starters come back on the defensive line, which will surely be the mainstay of the group this year.

Lauer, the fullback, also brings plenty of talent back to his linebacker position. The 6-1, 200-pound senior led the team in tackles in '09.

With plenty of high expectations for 16-year veteran head coach Chris Haering and his Blue Devils, this year looks to be when “yesterday” turns back into “today.”

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Tim Cwalina, OL:
Turned down scholarship offers from Pitt, Boston College and Buffalo.

Paul Lang, TE/DE: Was recruited by Michigan State to play tight end. As well as being a superb blocker, Lang had five catches for 37 yards and a touchdown in his junior year.

Luke Hagy, HB: Three-sport star who also plays basketball and baseball, where he batted over .300 through half of last year.

SLEEPER

Tyler Roth, QB
He is a 6-1, 175-pound sophomore gunslinger who could possibly turn enough heads to earn some time under center this year.

RETURNING LEADERS

Paul Goff, QB 587 passing yards, four touchdowns

Luke Hagy, HB 907 rushing yards, 14 touchdowns

TALE OF THE TAPE ('09)

Mount Lebanon tallied up an average of 255.9 yards per game (54th best in the WPIAL and 3rd in conference play). The Blue Devils defense surrendered an average of 267.5 yards per game (69th best in the WPIAL and 4th in conference play). Their average score was 23.3 to their opponents 21.6 per game.

KEY GAMES

Pine-Richland
- A sleeper team not garnering much attention after a 3-6 season a year ago. With eight returning starters on offense, including 1,000 yard rusher Justin Williams in the backfield, the Rams will light up scoreboards this year with a high-powered offense.

Hopewell- While they are a triple-A squad, the Vikings hold claim to one of the best ground games in the WPIAL, with Rushel Shell, a 2,000-yard rusher a year ago, leading the way. That fact alone makes this Mount Lebanon's toughest non-conference test.

Bethel Park - Bre Ford and his Black Hawks are, once again, on the top of almost everybody's list as conference favorites. Ford, the catalyst, rushed for over 1,300 yards and scored 20 touchdowns last season. He tallied up over 160 yards with multiple touchdowns in BP’s 27-14 win over Lebo a year ago.

Upper St. Clair - Jim Render and his Panthers defeated Mount Lebanon in a game that came down to the wire last year. Once again the Blue Devils get USC at home in the last game of the year. Perhaps this could be your makeshift Great Southern conference championship game?

Share
PSR VIDEO
See video
Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 1 Penguins TV Channel
See video
Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 2Penguins TV Channel
See video
Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 3Penguins TV Channel
Josh Bell had not hit a walk-off home run since he was a member of the Altoona Curve in 2015. He changed that Friday with a soaring shot for the left field loonies.
Custom 1North Shore Notes
Francisco Cervelli is as passionate about the current state of Venezuela as anybody you'll find. Last month, the Pirates' catcher spoke passionately about the movement, his country's state of affairs and the future of Venezuela.
Custom 2North Shore NotesPress Room
Gustav Nyquist and Jimmy Howard led the way for the Red Wings, who landed Pittsburgh its fourth straight regulation loss.
Blue LineCustom 3Press Room
Monday night was more than a game. For Jameson Taillon, it was another heave in an ongoing push to liberation from a disease that can break down the toughest of men.
Custom 4North Shore NotesPress Room