Flames can’t take McGuffy’s heat

By MEL PERKINS

Northgate took a long drive into the country last Friday night where they met up with the Highlanders from McGuffy High School. The Highlanders are playing down in class this year, joining the WPIAL’s class 2A after playing up in 3A.

The Flames (0-0, 0-2) entered the game looking to rebound from their 22 – 7 loss to Perry High School in Week Zero. McGuffy (0-0, 2-0) was riding high after beating Ambridge 28 – 0 to start their season. But, playing out of conference proved to be too much for the Flames and they fell to the Highlanders by the score 48 – 0.

Midway through the first quarter McGuffy scored their first TD to make the score 7 – 0. After the score, the Flames went on offense. Anthony Barbarino and Eric Hogan tried to establish the run game and Christian Davin targeted Davontae Christie through the air. The Flames were on the move. Starting on their 42, they crossed midfield to the Highlanders’ 39, but the drive ended with a fumble when Northgate chose to go for it on 4th-and-1.

Northgate’s defense rose to the occasion, ending the McGuffy series after only four plays with a Hogan interception that gave the Flames the ball on their 18-yard line. The Flames relied on the pass, with Davin throwing to Christie, Barbarino, Hogan and E.J. Williams. After crossing midfield, the series stalled and the Flames were forced to punt.

The Highlanders scored twice in the second quarter and at halftime the Flames went into the locker room down 21 – 0.

The Flames began the second half on offense, but a fumble on third down gave the Highlanders the ball on the Northgate 41. McGuffy wasted no time and with 10:19 on the clock in the third quarter, the Highlanders went up 27 – 0.

The Flames’ next two possessions ended with Heman Darjee punting, and the Highlanders scoring TDs on their possessions. The third quarter ended with the Flames being down 42 – 0, but on offense and driving. Davin targeted Williams, Barbarino, and Dre Allen through the air. And, after starting on their 30-yard line, the Flames drove 49 yards to the Highlanders’ 19-yard line, but an interception halted the Flames in their tracks, and the Highlanders capitalized with a score of their own to make the score 48 – 0.

With 2:26 left in the game, both teams substituted freely, and when it was all said and done the Flames, a very young team, had fallen to a very experienced team in a hostile environment.

Christian Davin finished the night completing 11 of 18 passes for a total of 113 yards, and Anthony Barbarino had five catches for 35 yards.

The Flames travel to Moon Township tomorrow night to take on the Chargers from OLSH.