HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — When Bishop McDevitt fell just short of a state championship last year, it’s hard not to want that level of success again. In 2022, the Crusaders want back in to the PIAA State Championship, and want to come home with gold medals around their neck.

The Crusaders fell 34-27 to Aliquippa in the PIAA Class 4A State Title game in 2021, but return a great number of players to this year’s team.

“It’s motivation obviously,” said senior offensive lineman Gabriel Arena. “Just losing that game, getting that sour taste in your mouth, making it to the state final and not be able to get the actual championship and the state ring, that’s your motivation.”

Of course, the Crusaders will rely on their highly touted quarterback Stone Saunders, who is headed into his sophomore season.

Saunders is joined by senior RBs Marquese Williams and Cyncir Bowers, junior WR Rico Scott, senior WR Tyshawn Russell and senior DE/G Riley Robell.

Last year

Bishop McDevitt finished the 2021 season with a 12-2 record. The only loss in the regular season came in the season opener against La Salle College, 21-0.

From there the Crusaders rattled off 11 straight wins. In the regular season, McDevitt outscored opponents by an average of 56 points per game. The defense never allowed more than 14 points in its wins until the state semifinals and had six shutouts.

The State Championship game against Aliquippa their only loss since the season opener, 34-27.

“You’ve been there, you know what it’s like but you haven’t won it,” Arena said. “You’ve got a chip on your shoulder. You have to go back there and get it.”

Full interviews with Bishop McDevitt

Interview with senior OL Gabriel Arena

Interview with senior CB/WR Tyshawn Russell

Friday Night Football returns for its 26th season on abc27. Started in 1997 by longtime abc27 Sports Director Gregg Mace, FNF was the first of its kind in Central PA.

Back in 2018, the show was expanded to 45 minutes of highlights, analysis and reaction. It remains the longest show in the Midstate highlighting high school football for thirteen weeks of the season.

You can watch abc27 Friday Night Football starting at 11:15 p.m. each Friday night on television, or on the web on our Watch Live page. Allie Berube, Nick Petraccione, Jared Phillips and John Repetz break down the best games in the area, bring you closer to the action and give you a comprehensive look at the Mid Penn Conference, Lancaster-Lebanon League and YAIAA each week.