Logic dictates that if a team is down its best player, the person most associated with a team's success, it will subsequently suffer.
Through its first few games of the 2013 WPIAL football season, Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, minus star running back P.J. Fulmore, has proven to be an exception to that rule.
With Fulmore on the sideline with an ankle injury, North Catholic got by Apollo-Ridge, 22-21 in overtime, in its season opener and has flourished offensively in its past two games.
In victories against Springdale and Northgate, the Trojans averaged 38.5 points per game. Last season, with Fulmore leading the way, they averaged 23.7 points per game.
The team's success has not come from the subtraction of Fulmore, but rather from the strong play of those who have temporarily filled the void he left -- Jerome Turner and Adam Sharlow.
In last Friday's 42-6 victory against Northgate, Sharlow, the team's quarterback, rushed for 125 yards and one touchdown, while Turner added 108 yards and a touchdown. The week before that, in a lopsided win against Springdale, Turner rushed for 109 yards and four touchdowns.
Fulmore is listed as questionable for this week.
Raiders break through
For as strong of a program as Seneca Valley has been the past six or seven years, one thing stood in its way on an annual basis, something that continually caused it to come up just short time after time -- North Allegheny.
From 2003-2012, the Tigers defeated the Raiders in all 12 of their meetings before Seneca Valley finally topped its Class AAAA Northern Eight Conference rival last Friday, 20-6, in decisive fashion.
The years of losing were not even the most painful aspect of the streak for the Raiders -- it was how they were losing the games. In North Allegheny's 12-game win streak, it won by an average of 26.5 points per game while averaging 38.3 points per game on the offensive end. Since 2007, Seneca Valley had not gotten within 21 points of beating the Tigers.
The loss was North Allegheny's first to a WPIAL team since falling to North Hills in 2010, its worst loss to a conference opponent since 2008 (also North Hills) and it registered its lowest point total since losing to Upper St. Clair in the 2006 WPIAL semifinals, 24-3.
"I know it's a whole new cast of characters, but a win over them is a nice accomplishment," Seneca Valley coach Don Holl said Friday after his team's win. "I'm really excited for our kids, playing a phenomenal game and getting this done."
Quakers receiver stands out
Quaker Valley has turned its fair share of heads this season, as it is off to a 3-0 start while averaging 41 points per game. Last Friday, in a victory against McGuffey, a large reason for its success was junior wide receiver Chris Conlan, who caught nine passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns, the second of which was the winning score.
Conlan's number of catches and yardage totals were the highest of any Quakers wide receiver since 2009, when Cory Leonard caught nine passes for 129 yards in a game. Last season, Conlan had 27 for 475 yards.
Games of interest
Pine-Richland at North Allegheny, 7:30 p.m., Friday -- Though their struggles against North Allegheny aren't quite as bad as Seneca Valley's once were, the Rams have not defeated the Tigers since 2008, losing their past four meetings by a combined score of 145-24. History is not on Pine-Richland's side in this matchup, as North Allegheny has not lost consecutive games since 2006.
Burrell at Shady Side Academy, 7:30 p.m., Friday -- The Indians gave up their first points of the season -- all eight of them -- in a victory last week against Valley. They lost to the Bucs in lopsided fashion last season, 27-6, but they currently have a one-game lead over them in the Class AA Allegheny Conference standings.
Avonworth at West Shamokin, 7 p.m., Friday -- The Wolves' success has emerged as one of the most surprising storylines in the young season, but the Antelopes are off to a tremendous start, having outscored their first three opponents by a combined 119-19 margin. Avonworth won the meeting between the two teams last season, 28-7.
Craig Meyer: email@example.com and Twitter @CraigMeyerPG