Next up for North Penn QB Reece Udinski: 12-0 St. Joseph's Prep
North Penn's Reece Udinski prefers not to discuss his passing statistics, possible college destinations, or record-setting performances. The senior captain is as humble and low-key as they come and more comfortable with deflecting praise to his teammates than talking about himself.
North Penn's Reece Udinski prefers not to discuss his passing statistics, possible college destinations, or record-setting performances.
The senior captain is as humble and low-key as they come and more comfortable with deflecting praise to his teammates than talking about himself.
An example is when 6-foot-4, 180-pound quarterback quickly mentions his receiving corps after a game. "They've been awesome all year," he said. "It makes my job a whole lot easier having all those weapons."
Even though he prefers to stay out of the spotlight, Udinski's efforts this year deserve considerable acclaim.
He has completed 210 of 336 passes for 3,827 yards and 37 touchdowns while leading the Knights to a 14-0 record and the PIAA Class 6A state semifinals.
"It's been an awesome ride," Udinski said. "Ever since we beat La Salle in the opener, we've been on a roll. "We just try to keep pushing forward and getting better."
North Penn aims to take the next step in its quest for state gold when it squares off against fellow unbeaten St. Joseph's Prep (12-0) at 5 p.m. Saturday at Northeast's Charlie Martin Memorial Stadium.
The winner will advance to the final against either District 7's Pittsburgh Central Catholic or District 3's Wilson in Hershey.
Udinski hit on 23 of 28 throws for a single-game school record of 442 yards and four scores in leading the host Knights to a 48-38 win Friday night over Garnet Valley.
The second-year starter made good on 12 of 13 throws for 258 yards and two scores in the first half, including an 83-yarder over the middle to Ricky Johns.
Udinski spread the ball among wideouts Johns (eight catches for 210 yards), Justis Henley (six for 89) and Jake Hubler (five for 57), tight end Nick Vasger (two for 21, two TDs), and halfback Nick Dillon (two for 65, TD).
Udinski's family moved from Doylestown to North Wales before last school year. The ex-Central Bucks West player lives across the street from Johns. "We've become best friends," Udinski said.
Udinski played youth football for the Lenape Valley Indians - his father, Jim, was one of the club's coaches - and was a sophomore starter at free safety for C.B. West.
His brother, Ward, starred at QB at C.B. West (class of 2011) and Juniata. An 8,616-yard career passer at Juniata, he played last year for the Munich Cowboys of the German Football League.
"Every summer, when he came home from college, we practiced together," Reece Udinski said. "He had a lot to do with my development."
Udinski and several teammates were at Northeast on Saturday afternoon for St. Joe's Prep's 38-17 win over District 11's Parkland. Hawks tailback D'Andre Swift, a Georgia recruit, carried 18 times for 318 yards and two scores.
"He's a tremendous player and they have a great team," said Udinski, who also plays basketball and lacrosse. "We have to be prepared and play at a high level."
Surprisingly, Udinski's lone football scholarship offer is from St. Francis (Pa.). "I'm just thankful to be in the position I'm in right now," the 18-year-old said. "Once the season is over, that's when I'll sort out my options."
Extra points. St. Joe's Prep's Terrance Greene caught eight passes for 124 yards and two TDs vs. Parkland. Hawks linebackers Phil O'Connor (eight), Bradley Cobaugh (seven), and James Johnson (six) totaled 21 tackles. Cobaugh and Johnson each made five solo stops. O'Connor and safety Dejuan Dandridge each made interceptions. . . . In 10 games for Southern, Zaki Samuels carried 230 times for 1,321 yards and 14 TDs. . . . Lincoln's Allston Augustin established a new single-season school passing record with 1,578 yards. He surpassed the old mark of 1,449 set by Joe McCausland in 2009. . . . Marple Newtown middle guard Cooper Maas notched 78 tackles, including 101/2 sacks. Next in line were end Kyle Tobin (72, seven) and tackle Mike Miller (56, six). Tigers junior Anthony Paoletti converted 160 of 280 passes for 2,739 yards and 24 TDs. He also ran for nine scores.
PIAA Class 5A Semifinal
Archbishop Wood vs. Academy Park, 7 p.m. at Plymouth Whitemarsh
PIAA Class 4A Semifinal
Imhotep Charter vs. Bethlehem Catholic, 7 p.m. at Northern Lehigh
PIAA Class 6A Semifinal
North Penn vs. St. Joe's Prep, 5 p.m. at Northeast