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Blue Devils hope to add to long victory string at Mansion Park on Saturday night

xBellwood-Antis rides into Mansion Park on Saturday night on the wings of a seven-game win streak. The Blue Devils are hoping for a B-A win and a Windber victory over Portage in a battle of undefeated squads. That combination of events would give Bellwood-Antis the Number two seed in the District VI playoffs which will begin next weekend and guarantee two home games in the playoffs and a short trip back to Mansion Park for the district championship, should they continue to win. The Blue Devils will know by the time they take the field, since the Windber/Portage game is Friday night at Portage. Currently, Portage is in second place with 1,040 seeding points, while the Blue Devils are in third with 1,030 and could not catch Portage if they defeat Windber.
Bishop Guilfoyle and Bellwood-Antis have developed an intense rivalry in recent years, probably second only to the BA/Tyrone rivalry in interest, in just about all sports.
Bishop Guilfoyle first appeared on the B-A schedule as Altoona Catholic in 1941. AC won the first contest 13-0 and Bellwood-Antis returned the favor in 1942, by the same score. Altoona Catholic led the series 4-3 with a scoreless tie in the rain and wind in 1944. The series was discontinued from 1947-59 and again from 1962-70, By the time the series was renewed, the name had been changed to Bishop Guilfoyle to honor one of the area’s early religious leaders.
BG took the series lead through the 1980s, but Bellwood-Antis has taken back the overall lead 17-12-1. The Marauders won in 2002 and 2003, stopping a Blue Devil 26-game regular-season win streak 21-0 in 2002.
Last year, the Blue Devils used a stout defense and put a pair of scores on the board to win 14-0 for their eighth consecutive win of the season at Bellwood Memorial Stadium, with sophomore tailback Josh Kleinfelter icing the triumph with an 87-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.
Bishop Guilfoyle (5-3), under second-year head coach Marty Georgiana slipped to start the 2005 season, dropping decisions to Chestnut Ridge 19-6 and Indian Valley 26-20 in overtime. The Marauders got back on track with four straight wins over Delone Catholic on a trick play 15-14, Philipsburg-Osceola 20-7, Bald Eagle Area 26-12 and Penns Valley 34-6. Tyrone dumped BG 28-6 in week seven, before the Marauders came back last week to stuff Mount Union 34-6.
“Bishop Guilfoyle basically runs a wide open type of offense,” reported Bellwood-Antis coach John Hayes. “They are multiple and will go often with two wideouts most of the time. They will use motion almost every play and use a lot of misdirection running counters and options. They use the misdirection to slow down opponents pursuit and to take advantage when the defense overpursues. The quarterback is the trigger in their offense. He moved in as a starter finishing up last year and this year has really evolved and become proficient at running the offense and throwing the ball.”
The rushing game for BG has been a kind of run-by-committee, typical of their spread offense. Junior fullback Nick Perehenic (5-9, 165) leads the team with 360 yards and three TDs, on 64 carries. Senior quarterback Tom Seasoltz (5-8, 145) has 311 yards and five TDs on 87 carries and halfback Sean McConnell ( Sr. 5-11, 155) adds 310 yards and five scores on 83 carries. Junior Jacob Librizzi (5-10, 152) has carried 24 times for 172 yards and a pair of TDs.
Seasoltz has completed 45 of 85 passes for 626 yards with six interceptions and three TD passes. Senior Lance Phillips (6-2, 185) has completed four of 10 throws for 181 yards and three TDs along with three interceptions. Senior tight end Ryan Craig (6-0, 170) has 19 catches for 342 yards and one TD to lead the receiving corps. Perehenic has 10 receptions for 107 yards and one TD and McConnell has seven catches for 124 yards and one TD. Senior Ross Gioiosa (5-8, 150) has six grabs for 76 yards, Evan Fraundorfer (Jr. 5-11, 164) has four receptions for 41 yards and one TD and Nick Nardelli (Sr. 5-9, 160) adds three catches for 43 yards and two TDs all in the last three games.
McConnell has scored six TDs and a two-point conversion for 38 points, Seasoltz has five TDs and a two-point PAT for 32 points, Perehenic has four scores and a two-pointer for 26 points, and Gioiosa has kicked 11 of 18 PATs and has one TD for 18 points.
BG is averaging 160 yards rushing and 101 yards passing and 20 points per game on offense, while their defense has given up 108 yards rushing and 47 passing and 14.75 points per game.
“BG uses a 5-3 alignment on defense, with a three-deep secondary,” said Hayes. “They will bring linebackers some, bringing an extra guy to help out. How much they blitz will determine what we can do on Saturday night.
“We will try to take advantage of what they give us and dictate to them what we would like them to do. We should be back at full strength this week. We will go with the same basic lineup, although a few guys who have been nicked will be back to full time.”
Josh Kleinfelter, who rushed 20 times for 199 yards, has totaled 1,381 yards and 19 TDs on 190 carries. Kleinfelter, a junior has now rushed for 3,001 yards in les than two full seasons, and needs 170 yards to pass Chris McCartney (3,170 from 1988-90) at the top of the all-time B-A career rushing list. Kleinfelter took over the B-A career total offense lead passing McCartney (3,419) last week, with a running total through eight games this season of 3,442 yards.
Jon Davila has rushed 33 times for 178 yards and one TD and Brandon Eger has 148 yards on 28 carries.
Senior quarterback Kyle Drost has completed 44 of 88 passes for 851 yards. Drost has been intercepted five times and thrown nine TD passes. The nine TD passes tie Drost with Ken Woodhall (1945), Gary Hribik (1972), Joe Orolin (1975) and Don Park (1985) for fourth place in TD passes for a season. Woodhall has the top spot with 14 TD passes in both 1944 and 1946. Drosdt has completed 68-of-153 passes for 1,276 yards with 11 interceptions and 11 TDs since taking over when Zach Tomchick went down with an injury last season.
Dan Kovac leads the B-A receivers with 17 catches for 396 yards and eight TDs. Kovac took over the lead for career receiving yardage last week passing Brad Wertz (689 in 1995-96) and now has 699 yards in receptions. Kovac also is tied for the top spot in TD catches in a season with Steve Miller (1984) and has taken over the first spot in TD catches in a career at B-A with 10. Kovac also took over the top spot in reciving yardage in a game with his six catches for 167 yards against Philipsburg-Osceoal earlier in the year. The old marlk had been held by Max kneidinger with 132 yards in receptions against Northern Cambria in 1955.
Devon Clapper with 10 catches for 131 yards, will be back this week, after missing the Mo Valley game. Troy Brunner has nine recpetions for 103 yards and Kleinfelter has six cathes for 195 yards and two TDs.
Kleinfelter is the Blue Devils’ leading scorer with 21 TDs for 126 points, Kovac has scored 10 TDs for 60 points and Evan Celmo has booted all 36 PATs he has attempted and three field goals for 45 points.