By Matt Popchock

(mpopchock@kdka.com)

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A year ago Beaver quarterback Christian Herstine had the game at his fingertips. Trailing Class AA Midwestern Conference rival Aliquippa in overtime, Herstine rolled to his left, poised to throw to the end zone, perhaps for a decisive score, on fourth and goal…

…and slipped. Play over. Game over.

Herstine would get a shot at redemption in the WPIAL Class AA Quarterfinals, but the rematch wasn’t nearly as close. The Quips whipped the Bobcats en route to a third consecutive berth at Heinz Field.

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Head coach Jeff Beltz hopes the third time is the charm, and that his Bobcats (5-0, 6-0) can do in Week 7 of this season what no one else in Class AA has done–figure out a way to knock off mighty Aliquippa (6-0, 6-0)–and in the not-so-friendly confines of “The Pit,” no less.

Beltz talked to “Mr. High School Sports” recently about the maturity of his quarterback, whether last year’s regular season matchup is still fresh in his mind, and what the keys to an upset will be for Beaver Friday night:

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(Follow me on Twitter: twitter.com/mpopchock)