H.S. football preview capsule
PIAA Class 5A quarterfinals
Who: Gateway Gators (12-1) vs. Hollidaysburg Golden Tigers (8-3)
When: Today, 1 p.m.
Where: Mansion Park Stadium, Altoona
Coaches: Gateway — Don Holl (19-6 in two years at Gateway; 107-73 in 16 years overall). Hollidaysburg — Homer DeLattre (27-25 in five years at Hollidaysburg; 79-89 in 16 years overall).
Last meeting: Hollidaysburg, 33-23 (Oct. 2, 2015)
All-time series: Tied, 1-1 (first met in 2014)
How they got here: Gateway — defeated Woodland Hills, 35-23; defeated Latrobe, 41-8; defeated Connellsville, 50-8; defeated Armstrong, 54-13; defeated Hampton, 40-14; lost to Penn-Trafford, 28-0; defeated Plum, 48-14; defeated Kiski Area, 61-21; defeated McKeesport, 21-18; defeated Franklin Regional, 33-17; defeated Woodland Hills, 40-28, in the District 7 quarterfinals; defeated McKeesport, 28-21, in the District 7 semifinals; defeated Penn-Trafford, 21-16, in the District 7 championship. Hollidaysburg — defeated Central, 30-20; defeated Silver Oak, Md., 31-6; lost to State College, 55-27; lost to Fort Hill, Md., 42-10; defeated Brashear, 49-26; lost to McDowell, 42-38; defeated Allderdice, 42-6; defeated Tyrone, 38-7; defeated Central Mountain, 52-18; defeated DuBois, 34-7; defeated Grove City, 30-27, in the District 6-8-10 championship.
When Gateway has the ball: Gateway offense — QB Brady Walker (sr., 18), RB Derrick Davis (fr., 8), WR Brandan Cain (sr., 23), WR Travis Thompson (sr., 4), WR Courtney Jackson (jr., 9), TE Tui Faumina-Brown (so., 15), T Zac Storch (sr., 62) or Jalen Chavis (so., 59), G Canaan Cleveland (sr., 55) G Tomi Woodson (jr., 52), C Amir Wahid (jr., 54). Hollidaysburg defense — DE Liam Steward (sr., 82), DE Brock Irvin (jr., 4), DT Sam Haines (jr., 76), NT Trevor Mitchell (jr., 63), LB Patrick Young (sr., 30) or Hunter Barr (so., 42), LB Nate Fisher (jr., 15) or Dan Molliver (sr., 20), LB Gus Dellinger (jr., 48), CB Dylan Allison (sr., 34), CB Trevor Miller (sr., 11), S Michael Day (sr., 5), S Jack Sauserman (sr., 2).
When Hollidaysburg has the ball: Hollidaysburg offense — QB Brady Walters (jr., 6), RB Gus Dellinger (jr., 48), RB Patrick Young (sr., 30), WR Jack Sauserman (sr., 2), WR Trevor Miller (sr., 11), TE Brock Irvin (jr., 4) or Liam Steward (sr., 82), T Deekan Pugh (jr., 70) or Nick Yingling (jr., 77), T Nathan Howells (jr., 64), G Ben Burk (sr., 54), G Josh Howells (jr., 61), C Josh Dunkle (sr., 78). Gateway defense — DE Canaan Cleveland (sr., 55), DE Justin Works (sr., 16) or Kelvon Nelson (fr., 26), NT Tomi Woodson (jr., 52), LB Derrick Davis (fr., 8), LB Tui Faumina-Brown (so., 15), LB Jay Johnson (so., 37), LB Jordan Stancovich (so., 10), CB Courtney Jackson (jr., 9), CB Travis Thompson (sr., 4), S Jeremiah Josephs (jr., 2), S Brendan Majocha (jr., 12).
What’s next: The winner plays the District 3 champion (either Governor Mifflin or Manheim Central) on either Dec. 1 or 2 at a site to be announced.
Notable: Hollidaysburg is making its first interdistrict playoff appearance since 2008 and seeking its first interdistrict playoff win — outside of PIAA-mandated subregions — since 1993. … The Golden Tigers now are 15-23 all-time in playoff games. … Gateway is playing its first-ever game beyond the WPIAL championship game. All of the Gators’ previous championships came before the current system of advancing all district or subregion champions to the state tournament. … The teams competed in the same section of the WPIAL when they were in Class 3A in 2014 and 2015, before Hollidaysburg decided to leave the league and operate as an independent. … The Tigers are outscoring opponents 114-41 in the fourth quarter. … Hollidaysburg has outrushed the opposition in all five games during their current winning streak. Young needs 58 yards to reach 1,000 this season. … Hilling has nine field goals this season. … Walker ranks among the state’s top passers with 3,597 yards this season. He has 38 touchdowns. … Gateway is the alma mater of Penn State assistant coach Terry Smith, who also coached the Gators for many years before moving to the college ranks.
— Philip Cmor