Football: Gildon leads North Catholic back to semifinals

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

Not long after Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic's football team was eliminated from last year's WPIAL Class A playoffs, the Trojans found themselves without a head coach. The school, which relocated last summer from the Troy Hill section of Pittsburgh up to Cranberry in Butler County, handed over its program to Jason Gildon.

A former Pittsburgh Steeler and 11-year veteran NFL linebacker, Gildon previously served as an assistant high school football coach at Peters Township and Seneca Valley before taking over as head coach of the Trojans. He succeeded longtime coach Bob Ravenstahl, who led North Catholic to WPIAL and PIAA Class A championships in 2013.

With Gildon at the helm, the Trojans (11-0) find themselves back in the WPIAL Class A semifinals for the fourth consecutive season. They will meet Jeannette (10-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday night at Valley High School in New Kensington. North Catholic captured the Black Hills Conference and is outscoring opponents by an average of 39.2-7.9.


Football: North Feature Athlete - C.W. North Catholic's Erick Taylor

Written by John D'Abruzzo on .

Name: Erick Taylor
School: Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic
Grade: 12
Sport: Football
Position: Quarterback

Background: A 6-foot-4, 225-pound senior quarterback, Erick Taylor helped Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic (9-0, 7-0) finish the regular season undefeated by completing 11 of 18 passes for 183 yards with a touchdown last Friday night against non-conference Shenango. Taylor also scored on a nine-yard run as the Trojans rolled past the Wildcats, 28-16.


Boys Soccer: Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic springs upset

Written by Brad Everett on .

Based on their standing in Section 2-A, Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic knew it would need to spring at least one upset to get back into the playoff race. The Trojans got just that when Jordan Mitchell scored his first three goals of the season to fuel Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic's 4-2 home win against Class A No. 5 St. Joseph. The upset creates an incredible logjam in the section where a half game separates first from fifth place. Aquinas Academy (6-3-1, 3-2-1) is in first place, but it could very well still miss the playoffs. St. Joseph (7-4, 4-3), Vincentian Academy (4-7, 4-3), Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic (5-3-1, 3-3) and Springdale (6-5, 3-3) are all within one half game of each other in the most tightly packed section in the WPIAL. Riverview (4-4-2, 1-4-1) can play spoiler in the section but it is also still alive for a playoff berth. Riverview already drew against Aquinas Academy and defeated the Trojans.


Cross Country: North Catholic's Kopchak races to title

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic's Rylee Kopchak won the Gateway Invitational on Saturday. The sophomore finished in 21:37, but Plum's Rachel Valotta was close behind in 21:44.

Kopchak was the only girl from Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic to compete. Last year the sophomore ran a personal record of 19:51.20 at the Central Catholic Invitational.

Kopchak is picking up where she left off last season. Kopchak finished fifth (20:16) at the WPIAL Class A championships and looks to better her time this year.


Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic 2015 Football Preview

Written by Joe Koch on .

There's an adage that if something isn't broken, you don't try to fix it.

That's the situation facing former Steelers star linebacker Jason Gildon in his first season as Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic's coach.

Gildon, who never has been a high school head football coach, assisted in recent years at Class AAAA schools Seneca Valley and Peters Township. He comes to a Trojans team that lost just one game in the past two years under previous coach Bob Ravenstahl and won the 2013 WPIAL and PIAA Class A championships. Last season the Trojans went 11-1, 7-0 in the Black Hills Conference, but lost to Avonworth in the WPIAL semifinals.

"They have been very successful the last two years, and they've been able to see what [success] looks like," Gildon said. "They've had a good senior class leave, but they left them with good habits. They showed those [younger guys] we are a good team and run a good program, and we hope they follow in those guys' examples. That's what we are stressing. When you have a team that has lost one game in two years, you don't want to change a lot. You really want to go in and see what they do well and bolster that. You want to continue to plug away."