His work complete, Archbishop Wood's Jarrett McClenton wrapped himself in a black jacket and stood on the sideline. The running back watched as Wood put the final touches on a 44-7 romp over Great Valley in the PIAA Class AAA football quarterfinals Friday night at Northeast.
McClenton, a senior who has committed to Villanova, ran for 110 yards on 12 first-half carries. He scored four touchdowns: two rushing, one on a pass, and one on a 51-yard punt return.
His spectacular play in the first half relegated him to second-half spectator. Wood coach Steve Devlin removed all his starters by the fourth quarter.
The win sends Wood to its seventh straight state semifinal. And the Vikings regulars should be well rested next weekend when they meet the winner of the Somerset-Bethlehem Catholic game Saturday afternoon.
"We always want to get on a team early. That's how we're used to playing," McClenton said.
Wood wasted little time scoring Friday, as McClenton capped the first drive with a 2-yard touchdown. The Vikings attacked Great Valley on the ground, running the ball on their first eight plays. A pair of touchdowns by McClenton and a safety gave Wood a 16-0 lead with 7 minutes, 13 seconds left in the first quarter.
"He's tremendous," Devlin said. "He's one of the best football players in the state. He's without a doubt a game-breaker, a threat every time he touches the ball. And he's a tremendous kid. That's the great part about him."
McClenton capped his night with a 65-yard touchdown pass from Anthony Russo. The 5-foot-8, 165-pounder caught the shovel pass near the line of scrimmage and sprinted through the center of the field. McClenton was all alone, a defender not within a few yards, as he scampered into the end zone.
As he ran for the score, McClenton told himself not to get caught. It was his last highlight before hitting the sideline.
The touchdown put Wood ahead by 37 points, and the Vikings entered halftime up by 30. The area's most electric player had done enough. His work was finished.
Archbishop Wood 23 14 7 0 - 44
Great Valley 0 7 0 0 - 7
AW: Jarrett McClenton 2 run (Dan McDonald kick)
AW: McClenton 51 punt return (McDonald kick)
AW: McClenton 19 run (McDonald kick)
AW: Ryan Barrett 15 run (McDonald kick)
AW: McClenton 65 pass from Anthony Russo (McDonald kick)
GV: Jake Hubley 57 with fumble (Pat Sauer kick)
AW: Alex Arcangeli 5 run (McDonald kick)