HERSHEY, Pa. - West Catholic's Quran Kent said losing wasn't an option. Not after what he and several teammates endured two years ago, when the Burrs suffered a double-overtime loss to Wilmington in the PIAA Class AA state final.
"We were going to get it done this time, no matter what it took," said Kent, a senior wide receiver. "We weren't settling for second place again."
The redemption-seeking Burrs took home their first state crown Saturday, and did so in no-doubt-about-it fashion. They exploded for 30 second-quarter points, racked up 530 yards of total offense, and dismantled previously undefeated South Fayette, 50-14, at HersheyPark Stadium.
"This feels so good," Kent said. "This is the big 'W' that we've been shooting for all along. We won it for us, the school, the guys on that 2008 team, and the city of Philadelphia."
The Burrs (13-2) set a record for points in a Class AA championship. In 2007, Jeanette, led by current Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, defeated Dunmore, 49-21.
"It stuck with me for two years," West Catholic coach Brian Fluck said of the 35-34 loss to Wilmington. "I take full blame for that loss. This title, we're taking it home for the guys on that team."
Accounting for a big chunk of West's 406 rushing yards was David Williams, a sophomore tailback who netted 183 yards on 14 attempts. He escaped for an 81-yard touchdown in the second quarter and added a 4-yard score in the third.
Quarterback Anthony Reid connected with wideout Jaelen Strong-Rankin for scores of 75 and 25 yards. Overcoming an early interception, Reid hit on 3 of 7 throws for 124 yards.
In the week leading up the final, it was South Fayette quarterback Christian Brumbaugh who received most of the ink. The William and Mary recruit came in with 3,615 passing yards and 50 TDs.
"I didn't really concern myself with any kind of comparison," Reid said. "My job was to make the right reads, drive our team down the field, and score as many points as possible."
Repeatedly hurried by West's front seven, the 6-foot-4, 200-pound Brumbaugh completed just 11 of 28 passes for 111 yards and two touchdowns. With 52 TD passes, he did set a single-season state record.
South Fayette, of District 7, was averaging 46 points a game. The Lions (15-1) were held to 24 rushing yards on 19 attempts. West's defensive line was made up of ends Jim Lynch (eight tackles) and Kris Padgett and middle guard Dom DiGalbo.
"We were sending four or five guys at a time after [Brumbaugh]," Fluck said. "We wanted to make him throw the ball earlier than he wanted to throw it."
Down by 7-6 after the opening 12 minutes, the Burrs notched four second-quarter scores, including Reid's 25-yard strike to Strong-Rankin 4 seconds before intermission, and took a 36-14 lead at halftime.
Early in the fourth quarter, a 26-yard TD run by Joshua Mathis made it 50-14 and put the mercy rule into effect.
"I didn't expect to score that many points," Fluck said, "but I thought we would score some points. We did a heck of a job of being in the right position at the right times."
West Catholic 6 30 8 6 - 50
South Fayette 7 7 0 0 - 14
SF: Z. Challingsworth 8 pass from Brumbaugh (Lee kick)
WC: Williams 81 run (kick blocked)
WC: Strong-Rankin 75 pass from Reid (Kent run)
WC: Reid 7 run (kick failed)
SF: Z. Challingsworth 20 pass from Brumbaugh (Lee kick)
WC: Hollomon 16 run (Lynch pass from Reid)
WC: Strong-Rankin 25 pass from Reid (Kent run)
WC: Williams 4 run (Mathis run)
WC: Mathis 26 run (kick blocked)