The Lions have been dominant over the last four seasons as they are 55-2 and have won two WPIAL and PIAA titles in that span.
But that was in Class AA and they are now faced with a new challenge as they have moved up to Class AAAA as their enrollment has grown and the PIAA has moved from four classifications to six.
So it is a new challenge for the Lions, but if they have proven anything under 9th-year coach Joe Rossi it is that they are up to any challenge put in their way.
And unlike many teams in the WPIAL who look to take the road to Heinz Field, the Lions will attempt to get there through the air.
That’s because they will again feature one of the best quarterbacks and most dominant passing games in the area and their ability to pass – and rack up big numbers in yards and on the scoreboard – will again be their edge.
Junior quarterback Drew Saxton completed 130 of 208 passes last season for 1,981 yards and 31 touchdowns and set a WPIAL championship game record – albeit in a loss to Aliquippa – by throwing for 435 yards.
Saxton was 27 of 43 that day and threw for four touchdowns and became just the tenth quarterback in WPIAL history to throw for 400 yards in a game but more importantly, he led the team to a 12-1 record.
But Saxton isn’t the only returner for the Lions as there are six starters on offense and seven on defense back and that includes three offensive lineman and both starting receivers.
South Fayette will also be stacked on defense as linebackers Geavonie Love, Dom Malosh and Noah Plack all return.
Rossi will need to rebuild the defensive line a little bit but for the most part there aren’t many holes on the Lions and so they could end up at Heinz Field for the fourth year in a row despite the step up in class.