Clairton 52, Monessen 7: An easy rout to 51st win in a row
Tyler Boyd dives into the end zone after scrambling, giving Clairton the first touchdown of the game Thursday against Monessen.
Monessen's Javon Brown looks to turn the corner and pick up yardage Thursday against Clairton.
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The Clairton High School football team went home Thursday night on Route 51, fresh off a rout to 51.
Clairton showed its might once again and stretched the country's longest winning streak to 51 games with a 52-7 pummeling of host Monessen.
Clairton's winning streak started in the second game of 2009 with a victory against Monessen. Some thought the team that was on the wrong end at the start of the streak might have a chance to end the streak. Monessen came into the WPIAL Class A Black Hills Conference game with a 3-0 record, the Post-Gazette's No. 4 ranking in WPIAL Class A and a West Virginia University recruit at quarterback in Chavas Rawlins.
While Monessen certainly has some talent and is a team to watch in the future, there is one major element the Greyhounds don't have. Tyler Boyd.
Boyd, Clairton's Mr. Everything, had a do-it-all performance in a Root Sports television game that showed why he has more than two dozen scholarship offers from Division I colleges. Boyd had 231 yards by halftime as Clairton moved to a 39-7 advantage. The Bears scored 26 points in the final six minutes of the first half.
Boyd, a 6-foot-2 senior, finished with 256 yards, scored three touchdowns and played his usual solid game at safety. He did just about everything for Clairton except make the cheerleaders' large sign that Clairton's players ran through at the beginning of the game that read, "Let's Get Messy With Monessen."
Boyd apparently took the sign to heart because he made a mess of Monessen's defense. He played receiver, running back and sometimes quarterback in a wildcat offense. All he did was:
• Rush for 154 yards on 12 carries.
• Complete 2 of 2 passes for 50 yards.
• Catch two passes for 52 yards.
• Make four tackles on defense.
• Punt three times for a 32.0 average.
"We knew we would score a lot of points because our line was just dominating them," Boyd said. "They were making huge holes for us to run through and they were making it easy for us to get yards and put points on the board."
Monessen finished with six first downs and 100 total yards. Rawlins was 3 of 13 for 62 yards.
"Really, I didn't think it would be a close game because I picture our team blowing out every team," Boyd said. "That's just our motto. We go out and dominate."
Clairton coach Tom Nola said, "He's the best player we've had at Clairton since I've been there. He's really special."
Monessen self-imploded a few times in the first half as Clairton piled it on after leading by 13-7 midway through the second quarter. A nifty, 33-yard touchdown run by Rawlins cut the Bears' advantage to a touchdown.
But Monessen lost two fumbles in the first half, and both led to touchdowns. The first fumble came after Boyd scored on an 8-yard run to cap an 80-yard drive on Clairton's first possession.
On the third play after the ensuing kickoff, Clairton's Devonte Harvey recovered a Monessen fumble at the Greyhounds 15. On the next play, Armani Ford hit Santeaun Sims on a slant pattern for a touchdown.
After Rawlins' touchdown, Clairton started at the 20, and it took Boyd three plays to move the Bears for a score. He ran 26 yards, completed a 39-yard pass to Terrish Webb and ran 15 yards for a touchdown.
Ford scored on a 1-yard run before Boyd, lined up at receiver, caught a touchdown pass with 34 seconds left in the half to make it 33-7.
But Clairton wasn't done. A bad snap from center in a shotgun formation went over the head of Rawlins. Clairton's Tyus Booker picked it up and ran 7 yards for a touchdown.
"It's like I said leading up to this game," said Monessen coach Andy Pacak. "You cannot give that [Clairton] team the smell of blood. We were 13-7 and involved in a pretty good game. Then you drop some blood in the water and bam! What did we have two fumbles? You can't do that against this team."
When Clairton's Vinny Moody returned the second-half kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown many of the Monessen fans who filled their side of the stadium left. The mercy rule (running clock) was in effect.
"Monessen has a talented team," said Wayne Wade, Clairton's defensive coordinator. "We may see them again in the playoffs. Maybe even Heinz Field."
First Published September 21, 2012 12:00 am