John Buffone, Pat Huggins and Matt Catrillo break down three Week 6 football matchups in the Lancaster-Lebanon League. Video by John Buffone.
Last week was an awesome week to be a high school football fan and a not-so-great week to be a high school football prognosticator. While some teams may have turned their seasons around last Friday night, let’s see if I can right the ship on my porous predictions.
Record last week: 6-6
Overall record: 56-24
Winning percentage: 70%
THE GAME: Cedar Crest (4-1, 2-0) at Cocalico (4-1, 2-0)
THE WINNER: Cocalico
THE REASON: The Eagles are coming off a catapulting win over previously unbeaten Manheim Central in which they rushed for over 330 yards and made key defensive stops in crunch time.
Cocalico ran their veer option offense with the utmost efficiency to control the clock and limit the amount of offensive possessions for Central.
This week, they get to host a Cedar Crest squad that likes to establish the run game as well and to pull out an out cliché, this battle could be won in the trenches.
While there is the potential for an emotional letdown after such a big win, I don’t think Cocalico head coach Dave Gingrich will let his squad come into this game unfocused.
THE GAME: Manheim Central (4-1, 1-1) at Elizabethtown (4-1, 1-1)
THE WINNER: Manheim Central
THE REASON: The Barons got stunned on their home field last week against Cocalico and will be looking to ease that frustration this Friday when they make the trip to E-Town.
However, The Bears’ defense has shown its ability to turn teams over and Manheim Central will have to make sure they don’t lose the field position game.
This game will feature two dynamic QBs in Central’s Kody Kegarise and E-Town’s Micah Garber and both offensives have the ability to make big plays.
Though this is looking like it could be a rather competitive game, I’ll give the edge to the Barons because I imagine they’ll be able to get in a better rhythm this week on both sides of the ball.
THE GAME: Solanco (1-4, 0-2) at Lampeter-Strasburg (4-1, 1-1)
THE WINNER: Lampeter-Strasburg
THE REASON: The Mules are giving up points in bunches this year; allowing almost 36 points per game.
Meanwhile, the Pioneers bounced back big against Ephrata last week; racking up over 400 total yards in a 56-14 victory.
I’m rolling with L-S on this one because they’ll be able to make the necessary stops on defense.
THE GAME: Garden Spot (3-2, 1-1) at Ephrata (0-5, 0-2)
THE WINNER: Garden Spot
THE REASON: After only mustering up seven points against Cedar Crest last week, the Spartans will have an opportunity to get their offense back on track against Ephrata.
The Mounts are currently giving up 50 points per game.
THE GAME: Warwick (3-2, 1-1) at Hempfield (1-4, 1-1)
THE WINNER: Warwick
THE REASON: The Black Knights finally got into the win column last week with a 31-24 win over Penn Manor but they’ll face a tough task when they host Warwick this Friday.
The Warriors can break plays from numerous angles, starting with their dual-threat QB Tyler Trimarchi, who passed and ran for a TD last week vs Lebanon.
If Hempfield keys in on Trimarchi, Warwick can look to other playmakers like Carter Forney and Ryan Long.
THE GAME: Wilson (4-1, 2-0) at Penn Manor (1-4, 1-1)
THE WINNER: Wilson
THE REASON: The Bulldogs shook off their narrow win over Warwick two weeks ago by rolling McCaskey last week, 55-0.
Penn Manor is giving up around 170 yards on the ground this week, which is great news for Wilson dual-threat QB Connor Uhrig and tailback Iggy Reynoso.
THE GAME: McCaskey (2-3, 0-2) at Manheim Township (3-2, 2-0)
THE WINNER: Manheim Township
THE REASON: The Streaks are looking for their third win in a row and will hope to keep their offense firing on all cylinders.
Township back Grayson Sallade is running the ball exceptionally well lately and if McCaskey decides to stack the box, Streaks’ QB Luke Emge probably won’t object to going through the air to targets like Kade Kibicki.
THE GAME: Lebanon (1-4, 0-2) at Conestoga Valley (3-2, 1-1)
THE WINNER: Conestoga Valley
THE REASON: Since their last win over Ephrata in Week 2, Lebanon has given up 46 points per game while scoring just an average of 12.
It’ll be hard for the Cedars to contain CV’s multi-faceted offense this Friday night.
THE GAME: Elco (2-3, 0-2) at Lancaster Catholic (2-3, 0-1)
THE WINNER: Elco
THE REASON: Both of these teams are looking for redemption after losing games they expected to win last week.
Both Elco and Catholic gave up a ton of yards on the ground last week but it was the Crusaders that turned the ball over three times; something they’ll have to clean up if they want to win this week.
Call this my semi-upset pick of the week because if Elco can establish any kind of a run game and create a turnover or two, they can hand Catholic their third straight loss.
THE GAME: Donegal (2-3, 1-1) at Northern Lebanon (2-3, 1-0)
THE WINNER: Northern Lebanon
THE REASON: The Indians pulled an upset win over Elco last week while the Vikings dropped a 48-31 game to York Suburban.
I like Northern Lebanon in this game because of the upward trending of QB Michigan Daub and Stevie Herb, who has filled in more than admirably for Luke Funck.
THE GAME: Annville-Cleona (4-2, 2-0) at Columbia (0-4, 0-2)
THE WINNER: Annville-Cleona
THE REASON: The Little Dutchman are flying high after their win over Lancaster Catholic last week and that momentum should continue this Friday when they travel to Columbia to take on the Crimson Tide.
In their four games this year, Columbia has been outscored, 149-58.