Week 3 is upon us and with it comes the last week before section play opens in the L-L. This week gives teams one final dress rehearsal before the journey for a section title commences.
Record last week: 14-3
Overall record: 29-7
Winning percentage: 80%
THE GAME: Conestoga Valley (2-0) at Lampeter-Strasburg (2-0)
THE WINNER: Lampeter-Strasburg
THE REASON: The Buckskins proved me wrong last week and they are fully capable of doing it again with quarterback Grant Stoltzfus throwing for 473 yards and seven touchdowns through two games, including a 14-for-19 performance against Solanco last week.
However, I’m giving the edge to the Pioneers in this one because of their ability to be two-dimensional on offense. Though the passing game struggled last week against Penn Manor, quarterback Todd Shelley still threw a 49-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter. Throw in the consistency of tailback Shane Lawler and an opportunistic defense and I think the Pioneers have a formula to pull out a close victory in the Lampeter Bowl.
John Buffone and Andrew Callahan break down three big L-L matchups for Week 3. Video by John Buffone.
THE GAME: Central York (1-1) at Hempfield (0-2)
THE WINNER: Hempfield
THE REASON: Don’t except a heck of a lot of throws in this game as both teams will likely try to control the line of scrimmage and establish running games.
Hempfield allowed two 100-yard rushers last week but won’t have to deal with Exeter QB Brandon Unterkoefler this week, who accounted for four scores in the Black Knights’ 35-7 loss.
Both teams have allowed roughly 25 points per game so far this year and while Central York has scored more points, Hempfield has an X-factor in quarterback David Martin-Robinson.
This game may come down to who creates a timely turnover or some kind of quirky special teams play but I’ll roll with the Black Knights at home.
THE GAME: Wilson (2-0) at Central Dauphin (2-0)
THE WINNER: Central Dauphin
THE REASON: This is the ultimate “coin flip” game. I’ve picked against Wilson one other time in the regular season and it came back to haunt me.
CD is humming along through two games; defeating Manheim Township and Susquehanna Township by scores of 31-9.
Meanwhile the Bulldogs have to be flying high after a double overtime win over Spring-Ford and could very well come up with enough plays to win this game.
I’m giving the edge to the home team here but wouldn’t be surprised with any outcome.
THE GAME: West York (0-2) at Manheim Central (2-0)
THE WINNER: Manheim Central
THE REASON: The math is pretty simple in this one. West York has given up an average of 54 points so far this year and have only scored 21 total points. Meanwhile, Manheim Central is scoring an average of 46.5 points and has only given up 17.
Expect the Barons to come out swinging.
THE GAME: Cocalico (0-2) at Upper Perkiomen (1-2)
THE WINNER: Cocalico
THE REASON: If Upper Perkiomen is expecting a run-of-the-mill 0-2 squad in Cocalico, they’ll be unpleasantly surprised. The Eagles have lost two heartbreakers so far this season to Red Land and Governor Mifflin.
Look for Cocalico to try to get back on track with their running game that rushed for over 330 yards in Week 1.
THE GAME: Manheim Township (1-1) at Governor Mifflin (1-1)
THE WINNER: Manheim Township
THE REASON: Governor Mifflin has given up five passing touchdowns so far this season and hasn’t seen an air attack quite like Township’s yet.
Though they were successful running the ball last week against South Western, Streaks’ quarterback Luke Emge should see some opportunities this week to light up the scoreboard.
THE GAME: Donegal (0-2) at Palmyra (3-0)
THE WINNER: Palmyra
THE REASON: This isn’t a good matchup for the Indians. Palmyra has allowed just seven points in three games so far this season while Donegal has yet to tally a point in 2016.
This is a very tall task for the Indians on the road.
THE GAME: Ephrata (0-2) at Warwick (1-1)
THE WINNER: Warwick
THE REASON: The Warriors had an impressive win over Garden Spot last week in which quarterback Tyler Trimarchi passed for 347 yards and four touchdowns.
I expect Warwick to keep the momentum going this week when they host a winless Ephrata squad that has yet to put up double digit points.
THE GAME: Garden Spot (1-1) at Spring Grove (2-0)
THE WINNER: Spring Grove
THE REASON: Garden Spot dropped a tough game to Warwick last week and things won’t get any easier this Friday when they travel to Spring Grove. In two games, the Rockets have outscored their opponents, 77-9.
THE GAME: Kutztown (1-1) at Pequea Valley (3-0)
THE WINNER: Pequea Valley
THE REASON: There’s no doubt that the Braves have learned how to close games out with two of their three wins coming within three points or less.
The QB/RB tandem of Jordan Lapp and Connor Horst is only going to get better as the season goes along. I see Pequea Valley reaching 4-0 this Friday.
THE GAME: Penn Manor (0-2) at Dallastown (2-0)
THE WINNER: Dallastown
THE REASON: The Comets took a step in the right direction last week; hanging tough with L-S but going on the road to Dallastown might be too much of an ask this week.
The Wildcats are coming off of 63-3 win over West York last week and defeated Hempfield, 17-13 in Week 1.
THE GAME: Reading (1-1) at McCaskey (1-1)
THE WINNER: McCaskey
THE REASON: The Red Tornado looked good in their 22-6 win over York High last week and I expect them to keep the ball rolling against a Reading squad that has yielded 75 points in two games.
THE GAME: Trinity (1-1) at Lancaster Catholic (1-1)
THE WINNER: Lancaster Catholic
THE REASON: The Crusaders' defense can expect to see a lot more action in the air this week with Trinity quarterback Casey Boguski averaging 31.5 passing attempts in his first two games.
If Catholic can get off the field on defense or create some turnovers, they’ll be in a better position to win (obviously).
The Crusaders kept Waynesboro’s passing game in check last week in their 24-21 victory.
THE GAME: York Suburban (0-2) at Columbia (0-1)
THE WINNER: York Suburban
THE REASON: In their only game this season, the Crimson Tide dropped a 43-14 contest to Delone Catholic. While Columbia will be able to compete in this game, they have to put together some early scoring drives.
THE GAME: Lebanon (1-1) at Elizabethtown (2-0)
THE WINNER: E-Town
THE REASON: The Bears have completely bought in to second-year head coach Bill McDonald’s philosophy and have been efficient on offense while opportunistic on defense.
E-Town hasn’t allowed a point yet on defense and have turned their opponents over six times.
THE GAME: Northeastern (2-0) at Solanco (1-1)
THE WINNER: Solanco
THE REASON: I feel certain that Solanco’s 46-20 loss to Conestoga Valley last week has left a very sour taste in their mouth.
The Mules’ defense will no doubt have to tighten up against a Northeastern team that has scored 109 points in two games. However, if they get another solid performance from the running game, Solanco can control the ball and the clock.
Lebanon County Picks
Annville-Cleona at Hanover
Cedar Crest at Lower Dauphin
Elco at Fleetwood
Northern Lebanon at Daniel Boone