The third time wasn't the charm for Beth-Center.
The Bulldogs have won the Tri-County South Conference three years in a row, but lost in the first round of the playoffs each time.
Apollo-Ridge did the honors this year with a 42-28 win to set up a meeting with No. 1 Sto-Rox.
Beth-Center led, 14-7, after the first quarter but Apollo-Ridge blew the game open with five consecutive touchdowns in the second and third quarters.
Jesse Zelonka scored on runs of 54 and 70 yards in the first half for Apollo-Ridge (8-2). In the second half he went to the air, hitting Tre Tipton for scores of 48 and 82 yards.
Anthony Welsh and Nico Brown had two touchdowns each for Beth-Center (9-1).
The Tri-County South struggled again as a conference, with Carmichaels, Frazier and Avella also losing.
Apollo-Ridge's most recent playoff win was in 2007 when it beat another Tri-County South team, Jefferson-Morgan.
• Sto-Rox 36, Avella 7
Lenny Williams threw for three first-half touchdowns to lead Sto-Rox to a comfortable win. Williams finished with 194 yards on 9-of-13 passing with touchdowns to Jaron Allen (7 yards), Mallory Claybourne (80) and Brendan Blair (56). Blair ran for two more touchdowns from 4 and 34 yards out to give the Vikings (10-0) a 36-0 lead at halftime.
Zach Thompson scored an 81-yard touchdown for Avella (6-4) in the fourth quarter on a pass from Santino Paris. It was Avella's first playoff appearance since 1976.
Williams moved into eighth place in passing yardage in Pennsylvania history.
• Clairton 33, Frazier 14
After a scoreless first quarter, Aaron Matthews ran for three touchdowns in the second quarter to lead Clairton (9-1) to the win.
He finished with 132 yards on the ground and added a receiving touchdown of 52 yards. Harrison Dreher ran 19 times for 146 yards for the Bears.
Both of Frazier's scores were passes from Charles Manack to Dakota Hixson. It was the 10th consecutive playoff loss for Frazier (7-3), while Clairton has won 20 WPIAL playoff games in a row.
• Neshannock 40, Brentwood 9
After a first quarter that ended with Neshannock ahead, 5-3, David Burkes got the No. 6 seed Lancers rolling against 11th-seeded Brentwood. Burkes hit Seth Dueitt for a 1-yard touchdown early in the second quarter and ran for scores of 41 and 91 yards to break the game open.
Burkes found Dueitt again in the third quarter for a 16-yard score and Elijah Owens ran in from 52 yards out in the fourth.
Connor McWilliams hit Bill Madeja for an 11-yard touchdown for Brentwood (6-5).
Owens and Burkes ran for more than 100 yards apiece.
Neshannock (8-2) has a meeting with Monessen next week.
• Monessen 37, West Shamokin 14
Clintell Gillaspie ran 18 times for 274 yards and three touchdowns to lead No. 3 seed Monessen (10-0) to the quarterfinals.
West Shamokin closed the gap to 24-14 in the third quarter, but Gillaspie added a receiving touchdown from Noah Rullo in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach.
Alex Lasslo threw both touchdowns for West Shamokin (6-4). The first was a 69-yarder to Andrew Wingard and the second a 6-yarder to Adam Crise.
• North Catholic 24, Western Beaver 0
No. 15 seed Western Beaver (5-5) held No. 2 North Catholic to just a field goal in the first quarter and 10 points at halftime, but it couldn't find the end zone against the Trojan defense that allows only 12.9 points per game.
Ronnie Meder caught two touchdowns for North Catholic (10-0). The first was a 61-yarder from Ryan Kirby and the second a 34-yarder from P.J. Fulmore.
• Avonworth 34, Laurel 16
Jesse Zubik and Moses Giles ran for nearly 200 yards to lead Avonworth (9-1) to the victory against Laurel (7-3). Each had a rushing touchdown and Zubik scored on a 90-yard reception from Matt Donovan.
• Fort Cherry 13, Carmichaels 12
Brennen McMinn scored with 3:44 left but No. 5 seed Carmichaels (8-2) was stopped on what would have been the winning two-point conversion attempt. Koltan Kobrys and Matt Heslin scored on runs for 12th-seeed Fort Cherry (10-1).