THE RED Devils' state title quest continues.
St. Clairsville's explosive gridders find themselves in the regional championship game Friday night against a formidable Johnstown-Monroe squad. The winner of the Zanesville-based contest will punch its ticket into the coveted Division IV Final Four.
Coach Brett McLean's Devils have been virtually untested all season long, winning each of their 12 starts in comfortable fashion. Last week's regional semifinal was no different as St. C. demolished Piketon, putting 59 points on the board.
But now the Red Devils' playoff road will get a little bumpier. The hurdle gets a little higher. There are no soft touches left, as a mere eight schools are still grasping for the Division IV brass ring.
Johnstown-Monroe will provide an acid test for St. C. The Johnnies are 10-2, blasting always-tough Ironton in Week 12. Johnstown-Monroe is the reigning regional champions.
So obviously St. C. will be put to the challenge. It is one, however, we believe McLean and his capable coaches will have the Devils well prepared for.
St. C. obviously boasts much talent. All the remaining teams do.
The Red Devils have thrived with more than physical talent. They are a coachable and selfless unit, focused from day one on the pot of gold at the end of a 15-week rainbow.
The Red Devils understand that team achievement trumps individuals glory. They have bought into hard work, commitment and team play.
St. Clairsville has come too far and worked too hard to be felled Friday.
We again extend our best of luck to St. Clairsville and fully expect game 13 will play out similar to the preceding 12.