Hoping to catch post season fever
Every Pa high school football team has a dream in August that they will have the chance to compete for a State Championship. The only way to have that opportunity after this weekend is to have qualified for their District playoffs. In District One AAAA West Chester Rustin, Neshaminy, Garnet Valley, Coatesville and Pennsbury are on top of the eventual sixteen teams that will begin post season action next week. The teams at the bottom will need a victory and some luck to catch that post season fever. These squads include Council Rock North, Penncrest, Upper Darby and Pennridge . The Central League has two contests that will probably determine playoff seeds. These games include Upper Darby @ Penncrest and Haverford @ Ridley. The winners in these contests keep their post season hopes alive while the losers will have to settle for some regular season games to finish out their seasons. http://www.pawrsl.com/pfn/rankings_2013_dist01.htm
The same scenarios apply to all other levels in the post season races. The District One AAA has Pottsgrove, Glen Mills, West Chester Henderson, Academy Park, Interboro, Bishop Shanahan, Springfield (Delco), and Phoenixville as the teams holding the eight playoff spots after week nine. Upper Merion, Upper Moreland and Chichester are still in reach if any of the top eight should falter.
It is now time to dive right in with predictions on five of the most competitive contests this week.
Week nine predictions did not go well with only two of five winning as predicted. Garnet Valley and LaSalle won as projected while Academy Park, Penncrest and Central Bucks West did not pass the test.
The last seven years the prognostication record stands at 342-144 while going 25-15 for this season.
The fields this Friday night may be damp from afternoon showers but this should not ruin the playoff atmosphere at several local stadiums. One interesting contest to watch involves a Central League match with the Upper Darby Royals traveling to visit the Penncrest Lions. This contest appears to decide which of these two teams will have a playoff berth. The loser is out and the victor is in post season play. Penncrest missed a good opportunity to clinch a playoff seed by losing to the Ridley Green Raiders last Friday night. The Lions were able to come from behind late in the third quarter with a 77 yard TD strike from QB Danny Fisher to Lavaughn Frame and an early fourth quarter 14 yard TD run by Danny Fisher to take a 15-14 lead. However the Green Raiders found a way to capture a victory when Ryan Dougherty intercepted a pass deep in Raider territory and running it back 53 yards to set up the winning TD run by Malcolm Strand-Young . The 20-15 win kept Ridley alive in the playoff race and forced Penncrest into a do or die contest this Friday night. Upper Darby started off the season by losing two of its first three games. The Royals have not lost since that third game including last week’s come from behind 19-7 win over Conestoga. If Upper Darby receives the same rushing effort by Cyrus Barlee as they did last week it should be celebration time on Lansdowne Avenue.
Upper Darby 23 Penncrest 17
The next game to check out is also a Central League showdown. The Haverford Fords will travel to Ridley with a possible playoff berth on the line. The winner of this contest needs some help in the form of losses by Unionville, Pennridge and Council Rock North to catch that post season fever. The Fords need a big effort by QB Jack Donaghy to overcome that ever present Green Mystique.
Haverford 21 Ridley 13
The rest of the fearless forecast:
Downingtown West 31 Coatesville 27
Council Rock North 27 Council Rock South 12
Neshaminy 34 Pennsbury 28
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