Pittston Area (1-3) at Hazleton Area (1-3)
7 p.m. today
The Coaches: Pittston Area’s Mike Barrett (7-17, 3rd year); Hazleton Area’s Jim Drumheller (6-18, 3rd year)
Last Meeting: Pittston Area 26-21 in 2012
All-Time Series: Hazleton Area leads 16-14
Quick Fact: Hazleton Area committed a season-high five turnovers in last year’s meeting.
Scouting Pittston Area: The Patriots snapped a six-game losing streak last Friday with a 12-10 victory over Tunkhannock. They led 12-0 late in the third quarter. There wasn’t much offense for Pittston Area as RB Kyle Gattuso (54 yards) was the leading ground gainer. The defense gave up yardage via the run and hasn’t created a turnover since the season opener.
Scouting Hazleton Area: The Cougars ended a nine-game slide by routing Williamsport 30-7. RB Zach Zukoski rushed for a career-high 190 yards on a career-high 29 rushes. QB Ryan Heller made his first start and had a nice game tossing the ball. The run defense has improved each week. The Cougars have a plus-5 turnover ratio the last three games.
What To Expect: Pretty much like last year, a tough game where both teams will have to grind out offense. Hazleton Area gets the edge since Pittston Area has lost 10 of its last 11 games on artificial grass.
— John Erzar