• Sgt. 1st Class John Cottrell, from the Reading Opportunity Center, starts the four-second countdown for the Mechanicsburg “Wildcats” center during the second round of pool play June 25 at the Second Annual Army Strong Tour – Pennsylvania Passing League – East Division tournament June 25 at Susquehanna Township High School in Harrisburg, Pa.

    1E-Pennsylvania Passing League.1

    Sgt. 1st Class John Cottrell, from the Reading Opportunity Center, starts the four-second countdown for the Mechanicsburg “Wildcats” center during the second round of pool play June 25 at the Second Annual Army Strong Tour – Pennsylvania Passing...

  • Jordan Banks, the Susquehanna Township “Indians” wide receiver, scores the second touchdown for his team in the championship game at the Second Annual Army Strong Tour – Pennsylvania Passing League – East Division tournament June 25 at Susquehanna Township High School in Harrisburg, Pa.

    1E-Pennsylvania Passing League.2

    Jordan Banks, the Susquehanna Township “Indians” wide receiver, scores the second touchdown for his team in the championship game at the Second Annual Army Strong Tour – Pennsylvania Passing League – East Division tournament June 25 at...

HARRISBURG, PA -- The Harrisburg Army Recruiting Battalion offers local football players an opportunity to compete during the summer with its Pennsylvania Passing League.

“It’s a great thing for high school football because in the summer, all a football player has to look forward to is lifting weights,” said Coach Joe Headen, the Susquehanna Township High School head football coach, who has hosted the PPL-East Division for the past two years. “This passing league gives high school football players a chance to get out and compete.”

The Pennsylvania Passing League is broken into the PPL-East and West divisions. The West camp opened June 11 and pitted 19 schools from Western Pennsylvania at Gateway High School in Monroeville, Pa. The East division saw eight schools from central and Eastern Pennsylvania vying for the title June 25 at the Susquehanna Township High School in Harrisburg.

“I love it! It’s very fun and a great competition, and it’s great to interact and meet new people,” said Logan Davis, a wide receiver on the Steelton-Highspire “Steamrollers” football team, who was participating for the first time in the East division tournament. “I think it’s amazing that the Army goes out of their way to help our country and still, takes the time to help us out. That’s pretty cool.”

The league is a 7-on-7 passing competition games for 14-man teams from high schools throughout the Keystone State. Each school’s team gets to play a minimum of four games with three pool games to determine the seeding for the single-elimination division championship brackets.

This year’s West division champions are the Clairton High School “Bears,” and the “Colonials” from Plymouth Whitemarsh High School are the East champions.

Recruiters supported their schools at both league championships as escorts for the teams, game and field managers, on-field referees and score keepers.

“This tournament gives us an opportunity to create or maintain a good working relationship with the coaching staff at each of our schools,” said Staff Sgt. James Slough, the Harrisburg Opportunity Center commander, at the East championships. “It also shows to the coaches and schools that recruiters can be a resource for them.”

This is the second straight year that the battalion and The Sports News Flash Radio Network were the title sponsors for both divisions. It is part of the battalion’s 2011 Army STRONG Tour, which also includes the Army Iron Man Campaign, Army Coach of the Year, Army STRONG Wrestler of the Year, HOOP STARS of the Year and Army Rivalry Tour.

Page last updated Tue June 28th, 2011 at 09:23