The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local Columnists

September 26, 2012

MIKE MASTOVICH| Shade senior piling up the yardage

JOHNSTOWN — Shade’s Brock Medva darted his way to the top of the area rushing statistics and landed in the No. 4 spot in the state, according to

The 5-foot-9, 160-pound senior back gained 338 yards on 22 carries last Saturday at Ferndale. Medva scored three touchdowns in a 35-12 win.

Those numbers pushed Medva’s season total to 863 rushing yards on 93 attempts

– a whopping 9.28 average per carry and 215.8 yards a game.

“Brock’s a guy who’s been really special for us,” Shade coach Mike Pribish said in an understatement. “He has a great attitude and is a great team ballplayer. He’s a phenomenal running back.”

Shade is 2-2 entering a key WestPAC game against visiting Conemaugh Valley on Friday.

“We’re .500 and we have a chip on our shoulders, which is better than being down and trying to work our way up,” said Medva, a starter since his sophomore season and four-year contributor to the Panthers offense.

Including this season, Medva has rushed for 2,754 career yards.

“It starts with the line, everyone on the line except one freshman has experience coming into the season, and that helps. Everyone else contributes,” Medva said. “As long as they get me a hole I can do my own thing once I get an open space.”

Medva also credited senior fullback Dylan Glessner, a long-time teammate and friend.

Glessner ranks 18th in the area with 275 rushing yards.

Against the Jackets, Medva crossed the 300-yard milestone. But he’s been consistent with 100 or more yards gained in all four games.

He had a solid 103 yards against Windber in a close 20-6 season-opening loss.

Medva followed with 231 yards against Conemaugh Township in a 27-14 victory and nearly hit 200 against a tough Portage squad, netting 191 yards in a 35-14 setback.

“I’ve coached a lot of fine football players over the years at a lot of different schools,” Pribish said. “He’s a real pleasure to coach.”

Medva is looking beyond personal accomplishments.

He and his teammates are hoping to have a breakthrough year for a program that won a combined six games in the three previous seasons.

“This is a lot better than where we’ve been at since I was a freshman,” Medva said. “It’s good to be with all the seniors and have success on top of it. It’s a nice thing as long as we keep it going.”

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