The Blue Devils look to start playoffs strong against Westmont Hilltop


Ali Wagner

Jack Showalter and the rest of the Devils’ talented offensive line will look to keep things going in the District 6 2A playoffs.

Colin McCaulley, Sports Writer

The undefeated Bellwood-Antis Blue Devils, sitting at No. 2 coming into the District 6 2A playoffs, face off against the No. 7 Westmont Hilltoppers tonight at Memorial Stadium.

In the past the knock on the Blue Devils was always that they had no competition in the I.C.C., and when it came time for playoffs the Blue Devils would struggle to stack up.

This year this isn’t the case. B-A rounded out the season against three one-loss teams at the time of the matchups. Mount Union had a superstar in Duante Martin, Southern Huntington had a powerful offense and equally talented defense, and Northern Bedford had a good quarterback and great defense. Though the I.C.C. may be a weak league overall,  there are still a few good football programs.

We’ve been doing it all season against talented teams in the I.C.C.

— Jack Showalter

Senior Jack Showalter agrees the Blue Devils are good enough to compete saying,“I feel that our team can rise up against adversity. We’ve been doing it all season against talented teams in the I.C.C.”

Following a 1-3 start the Hilltoppers have won five of six games, losing by a mere 6 points to the three-time defending 1A state champion Bishop Guilfoyle.

The Hilltoppers run a less-than-usual offense, only throwing 24 passes this season. They’re a power football team that uses cluttered backfields to hide ball carries and run behind a big and powerful front line.

Senior Chris wertman said the Blue Devils are preparing defensively by bringing, “an extra lineman in and we’re staying pretty tight to the line.We have to come off the ball low and hard so we don’t get pushed back.”

A run heavy team is the Bellwood-Antis defense’s dream, because it has been tremendous stopping the run this season, only allowing 70.2 rushing yards per game.

The Blue Devils offense has done well so far this year, averaging 430.7 all purpose yards per game.

Shawn Wolfe has thrown for 960-yards in his first season as the starter, and Thor Schmittle has 989 yards on the ground. Shawn and Thor look to carry the Blue Devils tonight against a talented Westmont Hilltop squad.

The Blue Devils are fully capable of competing in the playoffs, and they look to prove it tonight at 7 at Memorial Stadium.