Thursday, October 11, 2012

Friday football previews: Pats, Kennett meet with a lot on the line


A big Saturday afternoon (3 p.m.) Ches-Mont League American Division tussle between Great Valley and Kennett that may decide which team goes to the Class AAAA District 1 playoffs highlights the Week Seven scholastic football slate that kicks off tonight. Also, West Chester Rustin and Henderson renew their rivalry, while Conestoga continues its march to the district playoffs against Strath Haven.
Both teams are 4-2 overall. Great Valley is coming off a loss to West Chester Rustin, and head coach Mike Choi knows his team cannot afford another loss.
“We were very disappointed with the way the Rustin game turned out,” Choi said. “We felt we matched up well with them and our offensive line did very well. Our kids are looking forward to getting back at it against Kennett and they know how important this game is to us and our playoff chances.”
Choi knows job one will be to try to stop Jordan Lardani, the area’s leader in rushing yards.
“Kennett is a quality opponent and they have that real good running back Lardani (Jordan). He is big and tough and he keeps his legs churning,” Choi added. “We are going to have to do a good job on him to get this win. We feel good about where we are at right now and to make the Class AAAA playoffs would be huge for this program and we know it starts with the Kennett game.”
Two of the top running quarterbacks will be featured in Great Valley’s Chris Geiss and Kennett’s Jordan Jones. The Blue Demons are coming off a 35-13 victory over Sun Valley.
Pick: Two very good option offenses go at it, take Great Valley 21-14.
In the Central League, Conestoga (4-2) has won three straight games and has allowed just 13 points total in those wins. Head coach John Vogan says that his defense has caught up to the offense and that playing at Strath Haven (3-3) is never an easy thing to do.
“Harry Gicking, our defensive coordinator, has done a great job with the kids,” Vogan said. “And getting Max Dolente back has really helped the defense also.
“Strath Haven likes to keep you off the field by running the football. They have very good skill people and they like to run and create long drives. And their field is one of the few left in the league that has grass and the place is a great atmosphere to play in. It will be loud and the band there does a great job. It is my job to get the kids ready to play in that kind of atmosphere.”
Pick: Conestoga’s offense is too much for the Panthers, it looks like a 31-14 Conestoga win.
West Chester Henderson (5-1) at West Chester Rustin (5-1), 7 p.m.
The Warriors have not beaten the Golden Knights in a while and Henderson should be smarting over a tough 6-0 loss to Downingtown West last week. Both teams are big and physical and this should be a treat for fans of both schools. The Warriors will look to contain Rustin’s Adam Burke, while the Golden Knights should be concerned with Henderson’s all-purpose threat, Spencer Rymiszewski.
Pick: This may be the toughest pick of the week, but here goes. Henderson 21, Rustin 17.
Bishop Shanahan (2-3) at Downingtown East (6-0), 7 p.m.
Shanahan has given up 90 points in the last two games and the Cougars are averaging 42 points per game. The Cougars have a lot of people that can beat you on offense. The Eagles hope they will have running back Pat Corcoran, who missed last week’s game against Coatesville due to injury.
Pick: Downingtown East 49, Bishop Shanahan 14.
Coatesville (4-2) at W.C. East (1-5), 7 p.m.
Quarterback Emmett Hunt has not thrown an interception this year and the Red Raiders are hitting on all cylinders right now, scoring 84 points in their last two games. The Vikings gave up 41 points to Avon Grove, so look out here.
Pick: Coatesville 49, W.C. East 7.
Octorara (1-5) at Oxford (3-3), 7 p.m.
Two southern Chester County teams that badly need a win, with both teams having lost three in a row. Oxford’s defense looks stronger than the Braves’ does. Pick: Oxford 21, Octorara 14.
Unionville (4-2) at Sun Valley (4-2), 7 p.m.
The Sun Valley defense was exposed by Kennett last week and Indians quarterback Tom Pancoast should have a field day here. Tim Christopher, who starred against Oxford, could be a factor again.
Pick: Unionville 28, Sun Valley 7.
Downingtown West (5-1) at Avon Grove (1-5), 7 p.m.
Good to see the Red Devils get their first win of the season last week. Quarterback Tanner Peck, who threw for over 300 yards against West Chester East, is a player that can make things happen. But the Whippets, coming off last week’s slugfest win, look too deep and tough to lose this one.
Pick: Downingtown West 31, Avon Grove 14.
Saturday’s games
Germantown Academy (3-1) at Malvern Prep (3-2), 2 p.m.
Malvern gets back into Inter-Ac play following last week’s 40-20 win on the road at Upper Darby. Eric Purnell showed his game-breaking talent, scoring twice.
Pick: Malvern Prep 34, Germantown Academy 14.

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