Did Breylen Carrington have his moment in the sun when the Peters Township cornerback intercepted four passes against Penn-Trafford?
PT head coach TJ Plack said he thinks the 17-year-old senior’s best may be yet to come.
“Breylen is a young man that I can see drastically improving each week as he gains confidence and experience on the field,” Plack said.
Carrington’s tenure at PT has been marred by injuries. He broke his clavicle while diving for the football during a 7-on-7 passing camp in the middle of the summer of 2019.
Then two weeks before the season started and on the first day he returned to practice, Carrington shattered the bone again when he landed on his shoulder. He missed nine games, but returned for PT’s playoff run, which culminated with an appearance in the WPIAL championship game.
“I was so anxious to get back to playing,” Carrington said. “It wasn’t fully healed. That was really upsetting. It made me very sad.”
Carrington saw limited action upon his return to the team so he was determined to make his senior season count.
He said he gained 20 pounds of muscle by lifting and sticking to a high-protein diet, worked on his passing routes and focused on his foot speed by working on defensive drills.
“Not playing much was tough on me and the injuries made me hungry for this season. They drove me. I worked harder, ate well, lifted more,” said Carrington. “Playing football is a great experience and I missed a lot of that my junior year. So I want to have the best senior season I can.”
So far so good.
“It was fantastic to see Breylen get off to the good start,” Place said. “It was great to see considering the setbacks he has experienced.”
Carrington, of course, was pleased with his debut.
“I was excited,” he said. “It’s one of the best games that I have ever had. While I am happy I played well, I am more excited that we won.”
Carrignton said he owed his success to his teammates.
“The defensive line put the pressure on the quarterback. It was not all me,” he said. “I am really excited for the rest of the season and what the have planned.”
Carrington didn’t intend for his breakout game to be on defense. As a sophomore, he excelled on special teams and by his junior year he was ready to start on offense as one of quarterback Logan Pfeuffer’s go-to targets
“I always thought that wide receiver was my strength and that I was going to play offense in college, but now I’m not so sure,” he said. “My first game showed I have defensive strengths that I did not know about.”
As a youth, Carrington’s father encouraged him to try every sport. Mark Carrington had played football in high school and basketball in college.
Carrington settled on football and soccer as a youth. He played both sports since he was 6, but picked football after eighth grade.
“I did want to play both but they are during the same season,” said the 17-year-old son of Mark and Daneen Carrington, who was a striker in soccer. “It was tough to choose between them but my final decision was football because I liked it better.”
Carrington is hoping to attract attention from college recruiters, but his goals for the season revolved around his team.
“The goal is to never lose and play the best I can,” he said. “That’s all I can ask of myself. At the end of the season, I want to know that I gave my all.
“Right now I don’t have much to show but I believe I can better,” he added. “I believe there are no limits on what I can really do.”
Indeed, Carrington added a fifth interception for the season when Peters Township defeated South Fayette, 17-3. The turnover eventually resulted in a 28-yard field goal by Andrew Massucci.
In the win over the Lions, the Indians also gained from a 96-yard second-half kick-off return by Donovan McMillon and a two-yard plunge into the end zone by Corban Hondru.