Berks Catholic vs. Pope John Paul II
This Friday’s matchup of the area’s two catholic high schools will definitely have some bragging rights on the line. The Saints of Berks Catholic will host the Golden Panthers for last time as part of a two-year deal between the two schools that saw mergers 3 falls ago.
The Saints who have been hit with the injury bug still come into week one as the heavy favorite over the Panthers who come out of the Pioneer Athletic Conference. The Golden Panthers junior quarterback, Matt Mesaros, may find himself very familiar with Saints standout defensive end Pietro Gaspari, who leads a defense on the 7th ranked AA team in the state.
The guest Panthers will also have to hope to contain senior running back Chris Warren, who was just recently invited to the offense/defense Under Armor All-American game. In a recent interview with BIC Sports, Coach Keeley had mentioned playing Pope John Paul. You can see the interview here: http://youtu.be/MSp10xQSTKQ
All that considered, I still have to go with the Saints in the battle of the Catholics.
Berks Catholic-31 | Pope John Paul-7
The Blazers will be sporting new uniforms on this first Friday night but will be providing the same toughness and tradition. Led by two-way stars Xavier Smith and Kyle Myers, the Boonies will definitely have the big play capability to upset some teams this season. Cocalico will provide a good first test for Boone who looks to improve after last years disappointing season. The X-factor in this game will be the play of quarterback Nick Hughes. I believe that Boone will go as far as Hughes can take them. Also look for some deep passes to Boone wide-out Tom Pufnock, who has shown some big playmaking ability this August.
Although I believe the Blazers have improved, I don’t think week one will fair well for them.
Cocalico-28 | Daniel Boone-10
The Scouts kick off the 2013 season, which has a lot of promise. Standing in their way week one is Berks County Section 2 opponent Blue Mountain. The Scouts have hopes of a Section 1 title after last year’s strong season. Blue Mountain looks to move towards another district playoff birth.
This 2013 campaign marks the final season for Blue Mountain in the Berks County League. They will definitely try to leave a historic mark on this final season. Weiser has without a doubt the top offensive line in Berks County and will definitely use that to their advantage in week one.
The game plan this week for Weiser is a heavy dosage tailback Alex Guilbe, who will try to be the next 1,000 yard man in Weiser history. Let’s face it, behind this offensive line, it seems, even contributing writer Justin Allen could have 1,000 yards for the Scouts.
The Blue Mountain defense will do it’s best to slow down Guilbe with a pair of standout defensive tackles: Tyler Reber and John Ege. However, it is defensive back Sean Greenawalt that seems to be the unspoken leader of this Eagles defense. A member of the All-BIC Sports preseason team, Greenawalt led the team last season with 5 interceptions and expects to have that same type of impact this season.
All in all, I am going with the Scouts in this crossover game. I believe the run game and big play ability will keep the ball in Guilbe’s hands and that could spell trouble for the Eagles.
Weiser-31 | Blue Mountain-13
The Muhls will host McDevitt who comes to Berks County from the famous Philadelphia Catholic League. Muhlenberg will look to start fast and continue a steady push behind that strong offensive line, an offensive line that is anchored by senior center Aaron Lightcap who had this to say in an interview with berksic.com about winning Friday night’s game, “I definitely think we have what it takes. We got some new guys stepping in, but they’re learning the new plays pretty quickly and they’re picking everything up.”
Lightcap and the rest of the Muhl Mafia will look to do some heavy blocking for start tailback Ben Ortiz, who will carry most of the workload for the hometown Muhls. Muhlenberg will also look to be strong on the defensive side of the ball behind senior linebacker Dakota Thompson who recently sat down with berksic.com for an interview. I have a lot of respect for the league they play in (McDevitt), so I know they will be a team that works hard and comes to play. All things considered I still believe the Muhls take care of business with ease at home.
Muhlenberg-42 | McDevitt-14