Game of the Week: Penn Hills at Upper St. Clair -- teams seen here in a match-up last season.

Varsity Xtra: High school football returns -- your complete Friday night preview

Advance coverage of tonight’s gridiron action, from Mike White’s Varsity Notebook to the prognostications of the formidable Fumbler.

about 7 hours ago

 Martavis Bryant lines up Thursday against the Panthers at Heinz Field.

Steelers notebook: Suspended receiver Martavis Bryant must help himself

Art Rooney II said the team can support Martavis Bryant, but ultimately it will be up to Bryant if he wants to avoid further discipline.

about 8 hours ago

 The Pirates' Aramis Ramirez reacts to striking out at the end the seventh inning against the Brewers at Miller Park Thursday in Milwaukee..

Bob Smizik: Swept by the Brewers!

Nobody asked me, but . . .

about 3 hours ago

 Pascal Dupuis celebrates his second goal of the game in the teams 5-0 win against the New York Islanders in first round of the 2013 NHL playoffs.

Dupuis' children pray nightly for his healthy return to the Penguins

Forward Pascal Dupuis gradually working back into hockey after harrowing, life-threatening bout with blood clot in his lung.

about 8 hours ago

 Steffi Bruinghaus of Squirrel Hill, left, protests against Michael Vick, as Renarda Walker, right, supports him during a rally Thursday outside Heinz Field as the Steelers played the Carolina Panthers in a preseason game. More than 100 people demonstrated against the new backup Steelers quarterback who served jail time for dogfighting.

Anti-Vick group holds vigil outside Steelers game

A “silent, respectful vigil” remembered the dogs that died in the operation that led to Michael Vick serving 21 months in prison.

about 8 hours ago

 Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen hits a one run triple off of St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Michael Wacha during the fifth inning at Busch Stadium on Aug 12, 2015.

Pirates notebook: An opportunity to make up ground on Cardinals

A three-game series against the NL Central leaders give the Pirates a chance to cut into lead, but winning at Busch Stadium a challenge.

about 8 hours ago

 The Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady won the AFC Championship game in 2005 at Heinz Field and has tortured the Steelers ever since.

Ron Cook: Brady decision tops bad summer for Steelers

The preseason could not have gone much worse with the loss of Maurkice Pouncey, a couple of kickers, and now Deflategate overturned.

about 8 hours ago

 Volunteers from the Duquesne Youth Athletic Association, members of the community and Sam’s Club work together to install wooden bleachers at Duquesne Stadium.

Duquesne community rallies to renovate grandstand

The Duquesne Youth Athletic Association was able to repair the stadium grandstand with help from Sam’s Club and local businesses.

about 8 hours ago

 Pitt fans hang their head as their team falls further behind Youngstown State during the 2012 season opener at Heinz Field. Youngstown St. would stun Pitt 31-17.

A few older Pitt players still recall loss to Youngstown State in 2012

The shocking 31-17 loss adds little extra motivation for players such as Lafayette Pitts who thought it was an easy one for the win column.

about 8 hours ago

 Penn State football defensive back Jordan Lucas arrives for the team's Media Day on Aug. 6, 2015 at Beaver Stadium.

His brother's keeper: PSU's Lucas relishes special bond with his little brother

Senior safety Jordan Lucas uses his little brother Brandon to serve as his motivation.

about 8 hours ago

Obituary: Bart Cummings / Legendary horse-racing trainer

Mr. Cummings prepared the winners of almost 7,000 races during his training career, which started in 1953.

about 8 hours ago

 Aliquippa's DiMantae Bronaugh, left, drags a New Brighton defender during a game last September.

Varsity Notebook: Aliquippa RB fighting tough foe

DiMantae Bronaugh’s world was rocked by the news of a Leukemia diagnosis last Thursday.

about 8 hours ago

The Fumbler: Feeling hot, hot, hot

We could potentially near the record high for the opening day of high school football, which came in 1953 when the thermometer soared to 95.

about 8 hours ago

 Penn Hills QB Billy Kisner, left, on the run against Upper St. Clair in a Sept. 2013 game.

Game of the Week: Penn Hills at Upper St. Clair

It will be a battle of Upper St. Clair’s physically huge offensive line and Penn Hills’ read-option offense.

about 8 hours ago

 Will South Fayette's Hunter Hayes, shown here carrying for a 95-yard touchdown against Dunmore in the third quarter of the PIAA class AA championship at Hersheypark Stadium in December, extend the school’s 32-game winning streak?.

Football 2015: Top 10 storylines

Mike White breaks down the top themes for the district high school football season.

about 8 hours ago

 Upper St. Clair soccer coach Uwe Schneider, shown here in a 2013 photo, spent nearly four months last summer using a wheelchair after falling from a ladder.

Boys Soccer: Upper St. Clair coach stepping back into routine

Uwe Schneider spent about four months using in a wheelchair after falling two stories while doing housework last July.

about 8 hours ago

2015 Girls High School Volleyball Preview

Players, teams and storylines to watch and preseason rankings.

about 8 hours ago

District Fishing Report: 9.4.15

During a Mentored Youth Fishing program on Labor Day, Sept. 7, increased angling opportunities will be available for kids.

about 8 hours ago

Local auto racing: Lernerville hopes for a big bang this weekend

Track reschedules Firecracker 100 for Saturday, pairing it with the Working Man 50 on Friday for a big weekend of racing in Sarver.

about 8 hours ago

North/South/East/West Xtra: Plenty of storylines on football's opening night

Each week freelancer Brad Everett will take a look around the area and write about the most intriguing football highlights.

about 8 hours ago

Moon Area senior hopes Hoops, Heart ‘N’ Heroes tournament will raise awareness

Stephen Englert is holding a basketball tournament to draw attention to the rate of sudden cardiac death among college basketball players.

about 8 hours ago

South Xtra: Game of the week

Thomas Jefferson (0-0) vs. Ringgold (0-0)

about 8 hours ago

 Jason Zadrozny, director of buildings and grounds at Belle Vernon Area, stands on the bleacher seating overlooking the installation of the golden turf at James Weir Stadium.

South Xtra: The grass isn't always greener at Belle Vernon Area

District is ready to show off its shiny, new ... and gold ... football field.

about 8 hours ago

 Slippery Rock offensive lineman Cory Tucker is a graduate of South Park.

South/West Xtra: Bookends anchor Slippery Rock's line

Tackles Cory Tucker of South Park and Kyle Henderson of Moon lead the way for SRU’s efforts up front.

about 8 hours ago

 South Fayette's Marissa France was a third-team All-Section 6 selection last season.

South/West Xtra: South Fayette looks to carry on tradition

The girls volleyball team has been a regular in postseason play and looks for more of the same this season.

about 8 hours ago

 Charlotte Madson's busy summer was nothing new for this Upper St. Clair tennis player.

South Xtra: Upper St. Clair senior goes that extra mile to improve

Charlotte Madson hoping summer tournaments translate into WPIAL success.

about 8 hours ago

South Xtra: Rebellion wraps up a successful sophomore season

Attendance, ownership keys to professional softball team’s future.

about 8 hours ago

South Xtra: QB key to California's balanced attack

Talented senior James Harris ready to use his arm to lead Vulcans offense.

about 8 hours ago

North/East Xtra: Game of the week

Knoch (0-0) vs. Franklin Regional (0-0)

about 8 hours ago

 Alyvia Kluska, a top WPIAL tennis player last year at Greensburg Central Catholic, moved with her sister Michaela to White Sulfur Spring, W.Va.

East Xtra: Loss of sisters leaves a big hole in Greensburg Central Catholic's lineup

Centurions forced to deal with the departure of top tennis sisters Alyvia and Michaela Kluska.

about 8 hours ago

East Xtra: Latrobe grad receives Woman of the Year nomination

Valerie Dunlap chosen by W&J as its representative for NCAA national award.

about 8 hours ago

East Xtra: Spudich returns for second stint at Gateway

Girls soccer coach ready to step in where he left off three years ago.

about 8 hours ago

East Xtra: Former Latrobe coach takes over at Hempfield Area

Jenny Feiertag returns to coaching to lead a talented Spartans’ girls volleyball team.

about 8 hours ago

 Gavin Sandidge, a graduate of Central Catholic, is a senior inside linebacker at Case Western Reserve.

East Xtra: Central Catholic grad key part of Case Western's defense

Linebacker Gavin Sandidge ready for final season after leading Spartans in tackles last season.

about 8 hours ago

East Xtra: Seton Hill ready to surprise PSAC opponents

Led by defensive back Christian Carter, Griffins looking to improve on last year’s finish.

about 8 hours ago

 Carrington Motley, a 2012 Sewickley Academy grad, is having an outstanding track career at MIT.

North/West Xtra: Sewickley Academy grad an Elite athlete at MIT

Carrington Motley receives NCAA’s highest award for his efforts as student-athlete.

about 8 hours ago

West Xtra: Game of the week

Montour (0-0) vs. Central Valley (0-0)

about 8 hours ago

West Xtra: Beaver Area ready to make run at WPIAL playoffs

Experience and depth could be keys to a successful run for Bobcats’ girls tennis team.

about 8 hours ago

North/West Xtra: Sewickley Academy jumps from underdog to favorite

An experienced boys soccer team returns this year in hopes of making the PIAA championship for the fourth consecutive year.

about 8 hours ago

 It hasn't been a stretch to say Eric Blinn, a graduate of Western Beaver, is one of the top all-time receivers at Bethany College.

West Xtra: Western Beaver grad grows into top receiver at Bethany

Senior Eric Blinn is a record-setting receiver with two first-team All-Presidents’ Athletic Conference nominations under his belt.

about 8 hours ago

 Shady Side Academy's Ananya Dua could become the third consecutive individual to win at least two WPIAL Class AAA titles this season.

North Xtra: Shady Side senior looks to join impressive ranks

Ananya Dua hoping to become only the fourth WPIAL player to repeat as PIAA singles champion.

about 8 hours ago

 Sophomore middle hitter Erin Williams is one of Avonworth's 6-foot players.

North Xtra: Avonworth ready to tower over its opposition

Coach Doug Vandervort could have the tallest girls volleyball team in the WPIAL.

about 8 hours ago

North Xtra: Experienced Fox Chapel welcomes new season

Foxes have quantity and quality returning this season as it eyes a girls soccer playoff run.

about 8 hours ago

 Cameron Cress, a graduate of Mars Area, has teamed with brother Shane to help lead the Clarion offensive line.

North Xtra: Mars Area grads double-up at Clarion

Cameron and Shane Cress help anchor the offensive line for the Golden Eagles.

about 8 hours ago

 Steelers QB Mike Vick rolls out in front of the Panthers' Mario Addison, right, in the first half of Thursday's preseason loss to Carolina.

Steelers complete dismal preseason with 23-6 loss to Carolina

Mike Vick started at quarterback and completed three of five passes for 24 yards before Landry Jones took over late in the first half.

about 8 hours ago

 The Pirates' Francisco Liriano delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Brewers at Miller Park Thursday night in Milwaukee.

Brewers complete 3-game sweep of Pirates, 5-3

Francisco Liriano issued five walks, two of which scored, and the Pirates lost, 5-3, as the Brewers swept the series at Miller Park.

about 9 hours ago

 West Virginia head football coach Dana Holgorsen addresses attendees at the NCAA college Big 12 Conference Football Media Days Monday, July 20, 2015, in Dallas.

WVU defense moves into spotlight this season

With eight starters back, West Virginia’s defense hopes to build on its 2014 progress, but it will be counted on more than ever.

1 day ago

 Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is expected to be in action when New England hosts the Steelers to open the NFL regular season.

Brady beats Deflategate, will play against Steelers

The NFL said it will appeal the ruling, which came out forcefully in Brady’s favor, maligning the NFL for its handling of the scandal.

about 8 hours ago

 Teammates mob Pirates' Pedro Florimon after he hit a walk-off single in the 15th inning against the Diamondbacks last month  at PNC Park.

Pirates notebook: Rescinded waiver claim of one player leads to September promotion of another

The Cleveland Indians rescinded their waiver claim of Deolis Guerra, which helped the Pirates promote Pedro Florimon Wednesday.

1 day ago

 Pitt offensive lineman Adam Bisnowaty, left, goes through exercise drills at practice in August.

Narduzzi: Lineman Bisnowaty 'ready to go' but might not start in Pitt's season opener

Redshirt freshman Alex Bookser seemed to indicate Wednesday that he and fellow redshirt freshman Brian O’Neill would be the starting

about 17 hours ago