Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Trojans Qbs Praise Line Play High School Football

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Trojans Qbs Praise Line Play High School Football

Article excerpt

The relationship between a quarterback and an offensive line is a crucial one.

It's becoming quite clear as Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic High School prepares for this week's Class A state semifinal against Clarion that a seamless transition occurred when starting quarterback Adam Sharlow was injured in the Trojans' 21-14 non- conference victory against Neshannock in the eighth week of the season on Oct. 18.

Game time is 7 p.m. Friday at DuBois Area High School. The Trojans advanced with a 48-7 mercy-rule victory last Friday night against Tussey Mountain at Hampton's Fridley Field. Friday's winner advances to the PIAA Class A final against the winner of the other semifinal between Old Forge and Steelton-Highspire.

When Sharlow, a 5-foot-10, 185-pound junior from Brighton Heights sustained a knee injury in the victory against the Lancers, his role changed from quarterback to teacher and classmate P.J. Fulmore, a 5- 8, 180-pound junior from the South Side, was willing to listen.

"[Fulmore] is a quick study," Sharlow said. "It didn't take him long to learn the signals, but we had to work on his passing form. But he did take quick control of the offense and the team."

Trojans coach Bob Ravenstahl said Fulmore's familiarity with taking snaps in the wildcat formation a year ago made that aspect of the game easy.

"What he had to get used to was passing the ball and getting comfortable in the pocket," he said. "He had to learn to look downfield and read coverages. Since he'd been a receiver, he knew most of the patterns."

Fulmore didn't have to pore over the playbook when he was thrust into the quarterback role.

"I knew the plays," Fulmore said. "I just had to learn to throw the ball effectively, and it got easier as I worked on my mechanics."

Fulmore showed how much he's learned as he connected with Ronnie Meder on a 50-yard touchdown pass with 1:49 left in the second quarter of the victory against Tussey Mountain.

"His passing has gotten better," the coach said. "He's come a long way in the last five or six weeks, and he's gotten better at standing in the pocket and [dealing with] pressure. …

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