Football - Latrobe vs Woodland Hills
Latrobe falls short of Woodland Hills in 34-31 loss in season finale.
The mood in Latrobe’s Memorial Stadium started out somber as the Latrobe band took the field for a pregame tribute to longtime high school history teacher Jerry Ferraro, who died earlier this week.
The mood quickly turned as the Wildcats scored first on the visiting Woodland Hills Wolverines in what would be a back-and-forth offensive scoring battle in their WPIAL Class 5A contest.
Wildcat senior quarterback Landan Carns finished off the opening drive with a 1-yard touchdown plunge giving Latrobe a 6-0 lead with 9:55 left to play in the first quarter.
Wildcat senior kicker John McHenry added the extra point and the home team was up 7-0 after their first possession.
Latrobe’s defense stopped Woodland Hills on a 4th down attempt and the Wildcat offense took the field.
Latrobe senior wide receiver Nathan Stemmerich fumbled the ball after making a catch and Woodland Hills defensive back Angelo Reddix recovered it and returned the ball 55-yards for a touchdown and the Wolverines closed to within one point of the lead.
Woodland Hills quarterback Deontae Williams made an electrifying jump into the end zone to secure a two point conversion and the visitors went ahead of the home team 8-7 with 4:37 left in the opening quarter.
The Latrobe offense went to work and moved the ball down the field on the Wolverines.
Wildcat senior running back Dylan Gustafson then busted through the Wolverine defense and dove across the goal line on a 13-yard touchdown run giving the Wildcats a 13-8 lead.
McHenry added the extra point and the lead was 14-8 with 1:30 left in the opening quarter.
Woodland Hills opened the scoring at the 10:27 mark of the second quarter when senior wide receiver T’Rek Scipio caught the first of his two touchdown passes from Williams on the night.
The Wolverines failed on the two point conversion attempt and the score was tied at 14.
Latrobe’s Carns scored his second touchdown of the night on the ground when he crossed the goal line on a 6-yard keeper with 3:12 left in the opening half.
McHenry added the extra point putting Latrobe up 21-14 over Woodland Hills.
Woodland Hills mounted a drive that ended when Williams threw his second touchdown pass of the night.
This one from 40-yards out to senior E’shawn Carter.
The Wolverines fumbled the ball on the two-point conversion and the Wildcats maintained their lead 21-20 with 47 seconds left in the half.
Latrobe mounted a last minute drive as halftime neared.
McHenry finished the opening half scoring when he kicked a 26-yard field goal to end the half.
Both teams returned to their locker rooms with the Wildcats leading the Wolverines 24-20 in their Big East Conference clash.
Latrobe’s band took the field again for a couple of songs and then the Homecoming Court was recognized.
Senior Annie Duda was crowned this year’s Homecoming Queen.
Then all of the seniors from the cheerleading squad, band and football team were recognized before the home town fans in attendance.
Woodland Hills wasted no time in dampening the Homecoming festivities however as senior E’shawn Carter retuned the second half kickoff 75-yards for a touchdown retaking the lead over Latrobe 26-24.
Wolverine defensive back Williams intercepted Carns with 3:52 in the third quarter stalling a drive by the Wildcats.
Woodland Hills extended their lead a couple of minutes later when Scipio made a circus catch in the corner of the end zone on a 26 -yard touchdown pass from Williams for their second touchdown combination of the night.
Williams crossed the goal line on a two point conversion and with 1:32 left in the third quarter the Wolverines were pulling away from the Wildcats 34-24.
The Wildcats had other plans and pulled within three points on Gustafson’s second touchdown of the night when he scored with 11:27 left to play in the game.
McHenry added the extra point and the score was 34-31.
Latrobe was halted on a promising drive whenever Wolverine defensive back Keshawn Davis intercepted a Carns pass at the 6:33 mark of the 4th quarter.
After Woodland Hills was unable to get a first down on a stingy Latrobe defense they punted and the home team was looking for a comeback.
However the Wildcats were unable to convert a crucial 4th and 10 with 1:47 left in the game when a Carns pass over the center of the field fell incomplete.
Woodland Hills killed the clock and ended the game in victory formation with Williams taking a knee twice and allowing the Wolverines to escape with a narrow 34-31 conference victory.
Williams threw three touchdown passes and had an interception in the victory.
Carns and Gustafson scored twice each for the home team in the loss.
Woodland Hills improved to 5-2 on the season and 3-2 in the conference.
Latrobe finished the season 2-4 overall and 1-3 in the conference.
Watch this link for a full gallery of action photos available for purchase or sharing the day after the game.
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