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Week 5 Y-A League high school football game capsules

Patrick Strohecker
505-5402/@P_Strohecker
  • Dallastown and Red Lion are the only two remaining unbeaten teams in Division I.
  • West York and Kennard-Dale will face off. The winning team will gets its first victory.
  • The Northeastern-at-Red Lion game will likely garner the most attention this week.

The following are game capsules for Week 5 of the York-Adams League football season. All games are slated to start at 7 p.m. Friday.

Dallastown's Ben Ferree (59) signals a was one of 62 Pennsylvania Mini Maxwell Award winners for 2016. John A. Pavoncello photo

DIVISION I

York High (0-4) at Dallastown (4-0): The Bearcats are a lot better than their winless record indicates, but unfortunately, the start of Division I play for them doesn’t do them any favors. After losing to unbeaten Red Lion, 49-7, to open division play in Week 4, now York High must deal with another unbeaten division favorite in the Wildcats. Dallastown was viewed as a team expected to take a step back this year, but so far, all it's done is win, primarily on the ground. The Wildcats are second in the league in rushing, averaging 282.0 yards per game. Dallastown won last year’s meeting, 50-14.

Spring Grove (2-2) at New Oxford (0-4): The Rockets were flying high through two weeks, but have dropped their last two games. Despite the recent hiccups, Spring Grove has gotten great production out of sophomore quarterback Nick Shaqfeh, who ranks third in the Y-A League in passing with 527 yards and five TDs. The Colonials, meanwhile, would probably kill for a win of any kind. Things in the Greg Bowman era have not gotten off to a smooth start. The team struggles to score points and also prevent them. New Oxford is scoring 14.8 points per game, while the opposition is scoring 42.8 points per game. Spring Grove won the 2015 contest, 37-7.

Northeastern (3-1) at Red Lion (4-0): I don’t want to say this game lost its luster because of the Bobcats’ slip-up last week against Central York, but had it been a match-up of two 4-0 teams, then we’re talking about a potential classic. Still, this has all the makings of a game that could help decide the Division I championship when it’s all said and done. The two teams are practically even in nearly all statistical categories. Northeastern is first, fifth, first and fourth in scoring offense, scoring defense, total offense and total defense, respectively. The Lions rank second, third, fifth and third, respectively, in the same categories. This should be a fun one. The Bobcats won last year’s meeting, 14-13, in a cold, wet and windy affair in which they didn’t score either touchdown on offense.

South Western (2-2) at Central York (3-1): The Mustangs righted a teetering ship with a blowout win over New Oxford last week to snap a two-game slide. South Western lost a lot from last year’s team, but probably still thought it would get more offensively than it has thus far this season. If the Mustangs can improve their 23.5 points-per-game average, then it should lead to more wins, especially if the defense continues to allow just 15.5 points per game. The Panthers come home after pulling off the first true upset of the year, rallying from 20-0 down to stun Northeastern. Now, Central must avoid a letdown game on home turf. With the Northeastern win, the Panthers are no longer an under-the-radar team. So the question remains, can the Panthers now perform the same way with the spotlight on them? South Western cruised to a 35-14 win in this contest last season.

DIVISION II

Dover (1-3) at Eastern York (1-3): In a battle of two one-win teams, this becomes a game to see which side can get its second victory. The Eagles would like to avoid going 0-2 in division play, and, instead, work themselves into the Division II race. The Golden Knights, however, would love to build off their first win of the year from last week and make it two in a row, and get off to a strong start in division play. However this game goes, it would still be too early to write off either team if it loses, considering the division doesn’t seem very strong and is very much up in the air. Dover won this game in a defensive struggle in 2015, 7-6.

Susquehannock (1-3) at Gettysburg (2-2): The York County Warriors were the odd team out last week in Division II and still had to play a non-league game. The good news for them, however, is they’re done with non-league action and now just have division games remaining. The bad news is they had a fourth-quarter collapse vs. Twin Valley, which prevented them from going 2-2 in non-league play. Susquehannock now must travel to take on the Adams County Warriors, a team coming off a narrow victory over Dover last week. Gettysburg has already doubled its win total from last year, but with six games to play, won’t want to stop there. Hosting this game, it has a great opportunity to get off to a 2-0 start in division play and try to separate itself from the pack. Susquhannock won last year’s contest, 21-7.

West York (0-4) at Kennard-Dale (0-4): These teams better take full advantage of this match-up, because, based on their early-season performances, there might not be a better chance to earn a win for either. If you’re looking for a shootout, this shouldn’t be it. West York (7.8 ppg) and K-D (6.5 ppg) rank 22nd and 23rd, respectively, in scoring offense. Their 57 combined points through four weeks is actually less than the next two lowest-scoring teams — Dover and York High — have scored on their own. The Bulldogs won last year, 42-19, but don’t expect that many points this year.

York Suburban (2-2) at Northern Lebanon (2-2): After having their first four games of the season at home, the Trojans will play their first road game. That in itself should be a test to see how the relatively inexperienced bunch responds. The Vikings have two blowout wins to their name so far, including last week, and a narrow defeat, which could’ve gone either way and made them 3-1 coming into this one. They’re averaging 27.0 points per game, so they know how to find the end zone.

DIVISION III

Fairfield (4-0) at Bermudian Springs (3-1): The Green Knights have been the biggest surprise in the entire league thus far, getting off to the best start in program history. It hasn’t been a fluke, either. Fairfield is putting up 37.3 points per game, allowing just 9.3 points per game and has a plus-seven turnover differential. However, this will be the Green Knights' first true test of the season, traveling to face an Eagles side that is every bit a contender for the Division III title, as the Knights are. Bermudian is near the top in most offensive categories within the league and toward the middle in defensive statistics, which has translated into a 3-1 mark. The Eagles won last year’s meeting, 42-12, but this one has all the makings of a much tighter affair.

York Tech (2-2) at Biglerville (0-4): The Spartans, in large part because of the passing game, are surprisingly competitive through four weeks this season. Jordan Ray leads the league with 350 receiving yards and quarterback Josiah Smallwood is second in the league with 616 passing yards. The Canners, meanwhile, have struggled, as indicated by their winless record. Biglerville’s crushing last-minute defeat in Week 1 has carried over, and since then, the team hasn’t come within two touchdowns of winning. However, despite the disparity in records, the Canners should match up well with Tech and this could be a game that they can win, especially at home. Biglerville won last year’s game, 23-6.

Delone Catholic (3-1) at Littlestown (4-0): The Squires had their first setback of the year last week at home to York Catholic, and it was ugly, a 42-7 drubbing. Now we'll see how Delone will rebound from such a lopsided defeat after the first three games went so well. The Squires don’t have many secrets on offense, doing most of their work on the ground. Through four games, they’ve only passed 32 times and rank last in passing yards at just 171 total. The Thunderbolts nearly had their perfect start squashed in Week 3 at Eastern York, but pulled out a narrow win and then thumped York Tech last week to open Division III play. Receiver Tyler Barthel has been great out wide, ranking third in the league with 273 yards and first in the league with 20 receptions. Littlestown coach Mike Lippy goes for win No. 100 with the program. Delone won this meeting in 2015, 26-7.

Hanover (2-2) at York Catholic (3-1): The Nighthawks have sputtered some, dropping two straight after opening the year with back-to-back wins. The scary part about Hanover’s most recent loss, however, is that it scored just nine points. This isn’t a team built to win low-scoring games, so if it can’t find the offense against some of the better teams in Division III, then it might be in trouble. Speaking of better teams, the Fighting Irish shrugged off an ugly loss in Week 3 to a powerhouse Berks Catholic team by rolling past Delone last week. York Catholic will be home for just the second time this year, the only place it's lost this year. The Irish will look to give their fans a better show this time around. Last year’s meeting was a good one, with the Nighthawks winning, 20-13.

— Reach Patrick Strohcker at pstrohecker@yorkdispatch.com