When Colby Kincell removed his helmet following Mapletown’s season finale loss to Frazier, the Maples’ do-it-all senior thought his football days were behind him.
Football season merged into wrestling, where Kincell competed in the 138-pound weight class, and he was wrapping up his high school baseball career when he received the news from Mapletown head coach George Messich that he had more football to play.
Kincell, who spent time at several different positions at Mapletown, will play defensive back in Saturday’s 18th annual BeeGraphix Football Classic at McGuffey High School. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
An Observer-Reporter All-District selection last fall, Kincell will play for the South Squad, coached by Monessen’s Andy Pacak. The North Squad, which features players from 13 different high schools, will be led by Chartiers-Houston head coach Terry Fetsko.
Local coaches at 31 different high schools nominate players with the all-star game coaches having final say on who makes the roster. Kincell was one of 34 players chosen to Pacak’s team.
“It was pretty exciting,” Kincell said of the selection. “Looking back on it, I thought I was done with football, but it’s nice to get one more game in. Hopefully I get some playing time.”
The game will feature many high school athletes who will continue playing football in college, but Kincell chose a different path. He is set to begin working at Calfrac Well Services’ plant in Philipsburg. Kincel exceled at Mapletown despite being 5-6 and weighing 138 pounds and did not hesitate to join the booming oil and gas industry.
Kincell will not spend his first summer out of high school relaxing. He will be doing the same thing he did in the previous three – working. Previous summer days would begin with an early wake up, followed by wrestling practice and, just a few hours later, football practice.
It was Kincell’s work ethic that made Messich nominate the recent graduate for the all-star game.
“Colby has been a very dependable player for the last four years,” Messich said. “Everything we’ve asked him to do, he’s done. We felt he was one of the top athletes and he deserved to play in the game – a very hard working kid.”
Mapletown wide receiver Dereck Riggleman, who will play basketball at Penn State Fayette, will join Kincell on the South Squad. Monessen’s Javon Brown and Clintell Gillaspie, Carmichaels’ Brandon Lawless and Ty Aeschbacher and Gino Faieta of Beth-Center are a few of Kincell’s new teammates.
Some notable names on the North Squad are Zach Thompson of Avella, Anthony Byrd of Washington, Jacob Martin of Canon-McMillan and a trio of Chartiers-Houston graduates – Derek Hull, Miles Williamson and Walter Lober.
Kincell might be the smallest of the 61 players competing at McGuffey High School tomorrow night, but his stature has never stopped him from athletic accomplishments.
“Colby is not a real big kid, but he uses his athletic talent to get by that,” Messich said. “He’s very quick, he’s very strong for his size, and he showed that on the wrestling mat. He’s a tough kid. He won’t back down from anything and that’s what made him the football player he is.”