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Week 4 Y-A League high school football game capsules

Patrick Strohecker
505-5402/@P_Strohecker
  • Six Y-A League schools enter league play still unbeaten.
  • There will be two Saturday games in Week 4.
  • West York vs. Eastern York is the only match-up that boasts two winless teams.

The following are game capsules for Week 2 of the York-Adams League football season. All games are slated to start at 7 p.m. Friday unless otherwise noted.

The York-Adams League opens up league play this weekend and brings renewed hope for some programs that struggled during non-league competition. Amanda J. Cain photo

DIVISION I

Dallastown (3-0) at Spring Grove (2-1): The Wildcats are at it again, with a strong start to the regular season, going unbeaten in non-league play. For the most part, Dallastown has been winning on the ground, averaging 295.3 yards rushing per game, the third most in the Y-A League. Zion DeVance and Rodney Scott have rushed for a combined 562 yards in three games, among the best duos in the league. It actually comes as a bit of a shock that the Rockets aren’t unbeaten coming into this game as well, after experiencing a surprising, lopsided defeat to Garden Spot at home last week. Spring Grove turned the ball over three times in that game after only turning it over once in the first two contests. The Rockets were doubled-up in 2015 by Dallastown, 20-10.

New Oxford (0-3) at South Western (1-2): The Colonials are still searching for their first win under new head coach Greg Bowman, and they really haven’t come close yet. New Oxford has lost to all smaller-class schools in non-league play, by an average margin of 22.7 points per game. The Mustangs should get a break to open league play after a tough two-game stretch in non-league play the last two weeks. In those contests, South Western got outscored 56-9 against Manheim Township and Carlisle. This should be a game that gets the Mustangs off to a strong start in division play and back on the winning track. South Western’s defense dominated last year’s contest, winning 21-6.

Central York (2-1) at Northeastern (3-0): Credit to the Panthers for getting through the non-league slate with a winning mark. Nobody really knew how this team would fare under first-year coach Josh Oswalt, but the Panthers are proving to be much more competitive than last year’s 3-7 club. Quarterback Cade Pribula leads the Y-A League in passing, throwing for 532 yards through three weeks. Awaiting Central, however, are the Bobcats, a team that’s been on an absolute tear so far this year. Northeastern not only leads the league in scoring offense (52.0 ppg), but also in scoring defense, allowing just 6.7 ppg. In the first quarter of games this season, the Bobcats are outscoring opponents 68-0. No wonder they’re currently rated No. 1 in the most recent District 3 5-A power ratings. Northeastern posted a shutout in last season’s game, knocking off the Panthers, 42-0.

DIVISION II

Gettysburg (1-2) at Dover (1-2): These two teams combine for half of all of Division II’s wins on the year so far. It’ll be interesting to see what type of game we get between these two. Both are averaging less than 20 points on offense, but surrender more than four touchdowns per game. Both are also very young teams, and it’s shown in the turnover margin. The Warriors have a minus-one turnover margin and have given the ball away eight times in three games. The Eagles, on the other hand, have a plus-five margin, despite committing seven turnovers in three games. They know how to force turnovers and that could be a key in this one. Dover took down Gettysburg in 2015, winning 25-14.

Eastern York (0-3) at West York (0-3): There hasn’t been a ton of positives for either of these teams so far this year. A win for either team would be the first of the season and would instantly put the team atop the Division II standings. The Golden Knights nearly pulled off a mini, early-season upset last week in their home opener against Littlestown, but fell late. The Bulldogs, meanwhile, haven’t had much success at all. They’ve gotten outscored by 150 points in three games thus far. West York doubled-up Eastern in 2015, 42-21.

Kennard-Dale (0-3) at York Suburban (1-2): There was a rare optimism surrounding the Rams entering 2016, but so far, it hasn’t come to fruition. K-D is still winless and plagued by the same problems from past years — struggling to score on offense, while the defense gives up large chunks of points at a time. This is Week 4 and due to, not only a favorable schedule, but an unfortunate incident last Friday night, the Trojans will now play their fourth game at home on the year. Because of the threat at Columbia last week, Suburban had its first road game of the season moved back to its home field on Saturday. Eventually the schedule will even out some for the Trojans, but for right now, they need to take advantage of it and try to get back to .500 and off to a 1-0 start in division play. The Rams fell to Suburban last year, 34-12.

Twin Valley (1-2) at Susquehannock (1-2): The Warriors won’t begin division play until Week 5, so they’ll finish out their non-league slate with a visit from the Raiders. Susky and Twin Valley have really had similar seasons up to this point — one easy win, a one-sided loss and a narrow defeat that could’ve been a win. The Warriors don’t turn the ball over, doing so just twice in three games. The Raiders enter averaging 25.3 points per game, while surrendering 21.7.

DIVISION III

Biglerville (0-3) at Fairfield (3-0): The Canners desperately need division play to begin after a brutal non-league schedule. Biglerville just never seemed to rebound after having an all-but-certain win snatched from it in Week 1. The Canners rank in the bottom third of the Y-A League in both points scored and points allowed, something that will need to change if they want to see any success in Division III. As for the Green Knights, the question looms, how long can they keep the best start in program history going? Fairfield never began a year 3-0 until now and has a favorable home match-up this Friday night to possibly push it to 4-0. What’s more, the Green Knights are rated No. 1 in the District 3 1-A power ratings. Not a bad start to the season at all. Biglerville shut out Fairfield in last year’s game, 47-0.

York Catholic (2-1) at Delone Catholic (3-0): Nothing like a little bragging rights on the line between the two parochial schools to open up Division III play. With how strong both sides have looked so far this year, this could be an early boost in the division for the winner and a substantial step back for the loser. The Fighting Irish were riding high after back-to-back wins to open the season, but were humbled in their home opener by a powerful Berks Catholic team. The 34 points allowed was more than York Catholic allowed in its two wins combined. The Squires have gotten off to a fantastic start and are definitely a team to consider for the Division III title, along with the Fighting Irish and Bermudian Springs. Thanks to its perfect start, Delone is atop the District 3 2-A power rankings. York Catholic won a tight affair in 2015, claiming a 29-24 victory.

Bermudian Springs (2-1) at Hanover (2-1): The Eagles finally suffered a setback on the year courtesy of unbeaten Shippensburg last week. Still, as division play begins, they’re a team that should make some noise within Division III. There hasn’t been anything flashy about Bermudian’s start. It ranks in the middle of the Y-A League in both scoring offense (29.0 ppg) and scoring defense (24.0 ppg). The Nighthawks, like the Eagles, got off to a flying start with back-to-back wins, but suffered their first defeat last week, falling to Annville-Cleona by nine. Even with the 29-point offensive output in Week 3, Hanover is still second in the Y-A League in scoring offense, averaging 46.3 points per game, while quarterback Camden Mumma has thrown just one interception to six touchdowns on the year. The Nighthawks won last year’s game, 22-14, handing the Eagles their fourth straight defeat to open the year.

SATURDAY

Red Lion (3-0) at York High (0-3) (noon): Behind the two-headed rushing monster of quarterback Sam Emig and running back Dylan Gurreri, the Lions not only look like threats to win the Division I crown, but also to make the District 3 6-A playoffs. Of course, it’s still early for talk of that, but Emig and Gurreri are the only teammates that rank in the top 11 of the league in rushing and are the fourth-highest ranking duo in total yards. The Bearcats continue to show more and more promise every week, but it hasn’t translated into a win yet. Unfortunately, it’s tough to see this week as the time to get their first, and chances will be fewer and fewer once they get into the meat of the Division I schedule. Red Lion won this match-up last year, 70-6, but York High is much better than last year’s team.

Littlestown (3-0) at York Tech (2-1) (1 p.m.): Very few people likely predicted this Week 4 meeting to be between two teams with a combined record of 5-1. The Thunderbolts needed a late-game win at Eastern York to remain perfect last week and definitely came back down to earth a bit after an impressive first two weeks. The Spartans have reeled off back-to-back victories after opening with a loss and are getting great production through the quarterback-wide receiver connection of Josiah Smallwood and Jordan Ray. Smallwood is tied for second in the league in passing yards (520), while Ray leads the league in receiving, totaling 350 yards on nine catches. Littlestown won last year’s contest, 23-6.

— Reach Patrick Strohecker at pstrohecker@yorkdispatch.com