WESTTOWN — The comparisons of the 2012 PIAA runner-up Coatesville team will follow this year’s version, and likely the next couple.
The fact that the 2016 squad is reminding folks of that great team should worry opponents.
The 2012 team became its most explosive when Daquan Worley became a dominant runner. Aaron Young, who wears the same number as Worley did, has become that much sooner, and it is making the Red Raiders’ offense very, very hard to defend.
Friday night, Young and the Red Raiders ended West Chester Rustin’s five-game win streak with a 41-13 road, non-league victory in the regular season finale.
Coatesville finished 9-1 and will host a first round Class 6A District 1 playoff game next Friday.
“Our philosophy with the running game takes some time,” Coatesville coach Matt Ortega said. “We really wanted to come out and run. In 2012 it took Worley until the eighth game or so to have 100 yards, but Aaron has been running well and the offensive line is blocking well. We’re healthy and feel comfortable heading into the playoffs and we’ll take it week to week and try to improve.”
Rustin (5-5), who will likely start on the road in the Class 5A playoffs, set Coatesville up with great field position on its first three drives, starting 45, 37 and 37 yards away from the end zone, respectively.
Young took it from there, scoring on 23 and 30-yard runs the first two drives. He set Ricky Ortega’s one-yard touchdown sneak with a 28-yard catch and run on fourth-and-seven.
Still in the first quarter, Young dashed 44 yards for his third score and punched in a nine-yarder in the second quarter for his 22nd rushing TD of the season.
“It’s great, our offense is really rolling,” Young said. “Our defense is playing great and we’re trying to keep the momentum going in the playoffs.”
Young finished with 169 rushing yards on 10 carries, adding 32 yards on two receptions on the five drives he played. He heads into the postseason with 1,123 yards on the ground, while averaging 10.7 yards a carry.
Rustin coach Mike St. Clair’s defense had no answers for the speedy sophomore, and found the words to describe him just as elusive.
“He’s at a different level,” St. Clair said. “He’s just at a different level.”
Isaiah Hall finished the scoring for the Red Raiders, lining up at fullback in the heavy package and slamming in from three yards out. Coatesville’s starters kept the Knights out of the end zone and out-yardaged them 364-41 at halftime.
“We came out here a little nervous,” Matt Ortega said. “Having just won the league last week and having the playoffs two weeks away, (Rustin) was a team that had been doing well for a couple weeks now. We came out and took care of business early.”
Rustin got on the board with second-half TD runs by Brandon Frazier and Zack Vanscovich. The Knights won five of their last six after their worst start of a season ever at 0-4. Ty Pringle was not dressed for Rustin, Friday, but a full, healthy lineup could make the Knights a tough out in the 5A bracket.
“We saw one of the best teams in the state (Friday night),” St. Clair said. “They’re well-coached and they’re big, strong and fast. It was a tough matchup and hopefully we rebound next week and finish the season strong.”