If last week was any indication, it's going to be an exciting year of football in Warren County.
Eisenhower, Sheffield, and Warren found the win column in Week 2, and all three teams play at home on Friday.
Warren hosts long-standing-rival Bradford at War Memorial Field, Eisenhower looks for its second region win in a row hosting Iroquois on Homecoming, and Sheffield welcomes Brockway to the Mountain in non-league action. On the flipside, Youngsville hits the road to take on Cambridge Springs in search of its first win.
Times Observer photo by Jon Sitler
Eisenhower’s Alex Johnson (27) and John Shelton (63) lead the Knights on to the field before last week’s 33-6 win over Maplewood at Eisenhower High School.
With region and league play about to hit full swing, every coming week has added significance for teams trying to make their presence known in the postseason picture.
Bradford (1-1) at Warren (2-0), War Memorial Field, 7 p.m., Friday
After a pair of non-region wins to start the season, the Dragons open their Region 5 schedule against Bradford Friday at War Memorial Field. The Owls' 1-1 record includes a win over Kennedy Catholic and a 49-0 loss to Oil City last week. Injuries have been an issue, and Bradford has been searching for younger players to fill starting roles early in the season. Alex Colosimo is the Owls' leading rusher with 152 yards.
"Bradford's game plan is consistent of years past. They'll run you outside the tackles then trap you inside," said Dragons coach Greg Latimer. "They like to run scissors, sweeps, dives, and few passing routes. Controlling the line of scrimmage and following our reads on defense will be important for our team on Friday."
The Warren offense is looking for another big performance from junior quarterback D.J. Fehlman, who has thrown for over 300 yards, and all seven of his team's touchdowns, in the first two games of the season. Tanner Stanz has been on the receiving end of five of those touchdowns, and is the leading target with six catches for 88 yards.
Last year's meeting: Warren 47, Bradford 6
Iroquois (1-1) at Eisenhower (1-1), Eisenhower High School, 7 p.m., Friday
A season-opening loss and a region win over Maplewood has the Eisenhower Knights in a familiar position. Ike won five straight games beginning with Week 2 last season, and hopes to stay on that track with Friday's game against Region 2-opponent Iroquois. The Braves also lost their season opener - 30-0 against Harbor Creek - before defeating Youngsville, 39-6, last week. Iroquois burned the Eagles for 321 rushing yards, including 178 and three touchdowns from junior running back Brandon Roda. Quarterback Dylan Carpin was an efficient 4-for-4 with one touchdown pass to Roda.
"Iroquois is a run-heavy team, and it runs through Brandon Roda," said Eisenhower coach Jim Penley. "They are very aggressive on defense and utilize speed and misdirection on offense. They are a scrappy team and if we are not disciplined we will look bad."
Eisenhower quarterback Rob Wilston shredded the Maplewood defense last week with 229 yards and four touchdowns through the air, along with 99 yards and one touchdown on the ground. Alex Johnson is the leading rusher and receiver for the Knights with 169 yards on 20 carries and five catches for 149 yards this season.
Last year's meeting: Eisenhower 39, Iroquois 8
Youngsville (0-2) at Cambridge Springs (2-0), Cambridge Springs High School, 7 p.m., Friday
After an 0-2 start, Youngsville will look for its first win of the season against Region 2-opponent Cambridge Springs. The Devils have outscored opponents, 110-12, and are averaging 350 yards on the ground thus far in the 2013 campaign. The senior backfield duo of Colton Noble (31 carries, 313 yards) and Devin Walker (16 carries, 150 yards) have carried most of the load on an experienced team.
"Cambridge Springs is very good. They return all their starters from last year," said Youngsville coach John Victor. "We've made some changes that will hopefully help us, but like every other week, all I ask is that my players give 100 percent max effort and get better with each play. I strongly believe this will bring us a win, if not this game then sometime in the near future."
Last year's meeting: Cambridge Springs 30, Youngsville 13
Brockway (2-0) at Sheffield (1-1), Sheffield High School, 1:30 p.m., Saturday
If last week's 27-16 win over Elk County Catholic proved anything, it's that you shouldn't count out the Sheffield Wolverines. Up next for the Wolverines is Brockway in a District 9 Alegheny Mountain League (AML) crossover game at Sheffield High School. The Rovers are led by quarterback Alec Shaffer-Doan, who has thrown for 643 yards and nine touchdowns in wins over Cameron County and Otto-Eldred. Brockway is averaging a staggering 454.5 yards per game on offense, but are allowing 395 yards per game, defensively.
"Brockway is always a tough opponent, but we keep getting closer to the upset every year. I believe we have the talent to beat them this year, but we will have to play mentally tough as well," said Sheffield coach Dave Fitch. "Brockway likes to air it out in a spread formation, but they mix in a run now and then to see if you are paying attention. Although we did win a big game Friday, it is only one game in our quest to get back to the playoffs and we will need to pull off an upset or two to get that done."
Last year's meeting: Brockway 35, Sheffield 21.