Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Clairton QB Shines on Defense, Too

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Clairton QB Shines on Defense, Too

Article excerpt

It comes as little surprise that Clairton standout Aaron Mathews is putting up big numbers while quarterbacking the most potent offense in the WPIAL, but it has been his exceptional play on the other side of the ball that might be even more impressive.

Mathews, a 6-foot-5 senior, is having one of the best all-around seasons of any WPIAL player. A big part of his success has been his play on defense, where he has spent time at safety, defensive end and linebacker. Mathews leads Clairton in tackles (37.5), tackles for loss (17), sacks (7) and forced fumbles (4). Mathews has also intercepted two passes, returning one 100 yards for a touchdown against Greensburg Central Catholic.

And while Mathews is being recruited by Division I schools to play wide receiver, he has done very well lining up under center, completing 66 of 93 passes for 1,593 yards and 20 touchdowns. Mathews has also rushed for six touchdowns for the defending WPIAL Class A champion Bears (8-0), who average a WPIAL-best 59.8 points per game.

CWNC QB finds a home

Last school year, Erick Taylor played football at the Linsly School in West Virginia before playing basketball at Obama Academy.

This fall, the well-traveled senior is the quarterback of a team that has WPIAL title hopes.

Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic is 8-0 and ranked No. 2 in Class A. The Trojans lead the Black Hills Conference in scoring with 39.9 points a game, and Taylor has played a key role. Taylor, who is 6- 4, 225 pounds, has thrown for nearly 1,200 yards, which ranks sixth in Class A and is the most by a North Catholic quarterback since Brandt Gribbin passed for 1,224 in 2011.

Taylor has 13 touchdown passes and has also rushed for more than 400 yards and eight touchdowns. He has helped lead the Trojans to big wins the past two weeks. Taylor passed for 231 yards and a touchdown and also rushed for a score in a 26-14 win at Avonworth, and then rushed for a 45-yard touchdown and added a touchdown pass in a 20-0 triumph against Bishop Canevin. …

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