Week 9 York-Adams League high school football preview game capsules
- Division I has three teams sitting at 4-1, just a game back of Central York for first place.
- If Dover and Susquehannock both win, they'll set up a Week 10 showdown for outright Division II champion.
- York Catholic, Bermudian Springs and Littlestown all sit at 4-1 in Division III and tied for first place.
The following are game capsules for Week 9 of the York-Adams League high school football season. All games are 7 p.m. Friday.
Dallastown (6-2, 4-1) at Central York (6-2, 5-0): The Panthers were part of the York-Adams game of the week in Week 8 vs. Red Lion. They'll again be part of the week's top game in Week 9, when the Wildcats come to visit. Dallastown is a team that, for the most part, has flown under the radar this year. Central York was the preseason favorite in Division I, Red Lion was undefeated for seven weeks and the reigning D-I champion and York High was the feel-good story of 2017. The Wildcats have simply gone about their business and continued to win. Now, they've found themselves in the race for a D-I crown and battling for a berth in the District 3 Class 6-A playoffs. Currently, they hold the eighth-and-final district 6-A spot. Meanwhile, the Panthers must continue to win if they want to win the division outright and also make districts. Central is the last remaining unbeaten team in D-I play, but there are three teams at 4-1, all ready to pounce if the Panthers slip. Central took last year's contest, 31-27.
Northeastern (4-4, 1-3) at South Western (2-6, 1-4): The Bobcats finally played a team that wasn't in the top half of D-I and snapped their losing streak last Friday, defeating Spring Grove. The offense did its part, scoring 59 points, while the defense did allow 30 points. The good news is that Northeastern should be viewed as a favorite the last couple weeks, which could produce an above-.500 finish. The Mustangs have lost six of their last seven, with that lone win coming against winless New Oxford. It's been a difficult year under first-year head coach, Chris Heilman, and this week likely won't get much better going against a Bobcats team riding some momentum. Northeastern shut out South Western in 2016, 31-0.
York High (7-1, 4-1) at New Oxford (0-8, 0-5): The Bearcats continue to roll this season, and, through eight games, not only is York High in good position to make the District 3 5-A playoffs, but, at the moment, holds down the No. 4 seed, which would give it a home game. Khalid Dorsey continues to dominate on the ground, leading the Y-A League with 1,315 yards. With a match-up vs. the Colonials, he should easily build on that lead for the rushing crown. If there's been any positive for New Oxford this year, it's been the play of quarterback Brayden Long, who leads the Y-A League with 1,754 passing yards and 16 touchdown passes. In a game between two teams both searching for their first win at this time last year, the Bearcats won it, 62-29.
Spring Grove (1-7, 1-4) at Red Lion (7-1, 4-1): The Rockets haven't really shown well since earning their first win a few weeks ago. This appears to be another tough week for Spring Grove. If there's any positive, the Rockets could have favorable match-up in Week 10 against South Western, so creating momentum heading into that game will be needed. The Lions finally saw their long regular-season winning streak end with a loss to Central in Week 8, snapping a 21-game run. But, there's no time for the Lions to hang their heads because they still have a chance to grab a share for the division title. They also need to keep winning to stay in the District 3 6-A playoff picture. The Lions dominated last year's meeting, 42-7.
West York (2-6, 2-2) at Dover (5-3, 4-0): Despite having a less-than-stellar overall record, the Bulldogs still went into Week 8 in the hunt for a division title. West York has played better of late, but a one-point loss to Susquehannock ended any chance of it winning the division. Still, the Bulldogs pose a real threat to D-II opponents, and that includes the division-leading Eagles. Dover got back to its winning ways last week, when it got back into division play. Now, in their final home game of the year, the Eagles need one win to set up a Week 10 showdown with Susquehannock for the D-II crown. Dover won last season's contest, 14-7.
Eastern York (2-6, 1-4) at Central Martinsburg (6-3): The Golden Knights have struggled with low numbers all year and it's starting to take its toll. Eastern has lost its last four games by an average margin of 24.8 points per game, while only scoring an average of 13.3 points per game. This is the final game of the regular season for the Dragons, who have alternated wins and losses the last five weeks.
York Suburban (1-7, 0-4) at Gettysburg (5-3, 2-2): A year ago, this game held a lot of meaning. The Trojans entered with a one-game lead in the division over the Warriors. Suburban won it, leading to a second consecutive D-II title. A year later, the stakes aren't nearly as high. The Trojans going through a true rebuild with a young team. Meanwhile, Gettysburg is still hoping to find its way into a District 3 4-A playoff spot, so this game has some meaning for the Warriors. Suburban was victorious in 2016, 28-22.
Susquehannock (6-2, 4-0) at Kennard-Dale (4-4, 2-3): The Warriors are one game away from setting up a huge Week 10 showdown with Dover to crown a D-II champ. Susquehannock showed some shakiness in its one-point win over West York last week. The Warriors probably should've handled the Bulldogs with more ease, but, also came back from a three-score deficit, showing off their comeback ability. Now, Susky must deal with a sneaky difficult road game vs. the Rams. K-D might not be in contention to win a division or make the district playoffs, but it can still crack the .500 mark for the first time in years. This is the second of three consecutive home games to close out the year, so, getting to that five-win threshold is doable. The Warriors thrashed the Rams last season, 51-0.
Bermudian Springs (6-2, 4-1) at Littlestown (7-1, 4-1): This game has all the drama you'd hope for a Week 9 game. While both teams lost to York Catholic, head-to-head results don't break a tie for division champ, so this game will determine who could potentially share, or win outright, the D-III crown. The Eagles spotted the Fighting Irish a huge lead last week, eventually rallying to make the final score respectable. While Bermudian is still fighting to grab at least a share of the division crown, it also must be wary of hanging on to the fourth-and-final District 3 3-A playoff berth, which it currently occupies. The Thunderbolts are in better shape in district play, but are still focused on making sure they don't miss out on a division championship or co-championship. Last year's showdown was as good as it gets, with the Eagles pulling out a 35-28 win.
Hanover (4-4, 2-3) at Biglerville (1-7, 1-4): The Nighthawks continue to sit in the middle of D-III. They also routinely have one of the more exciting offenses in the division and maybe entire league. Hanover is averaging 37.3 point per game. That offensive total should go up vs. the Canners. Biglerville boasts a defense that is allowing about a touchdown more per game than Hanover is scoring, so this could be a score-fest. The Nighthawks won last year's meeting, 20-14.
York Tech (0-8, 0-5) at Delone Catholic (6-2, 3-2): The Spartans continue to head toward a winless campaign, with a finish against both Catholic schools the final two weeks. If there's any bright spot to this season so far, it's that the Tech offense has found a little more success as of late. Through the first six games, the Spartans scored just 25 points. In the last two, they've put up 34, so, that's progress. The Squires are still technically in the hunt for a D-III title, but it'll take some help from the three one-loss teams ahead of them. Also, Delone needs to win out to try and set up an unlikely all-Catholic-school District 3 2-A title game with York Catholic, which currently sits at No. 1, while the Squires are at No. 3, on the outside looking in. Delone shut out Tech in 2016, 37-0.
Fairfield (4-4, 2-3) at York Catholic (6-2, 4-1): The Green Knights are clinging to that final District 3 1-A playoff spot, which it missed out on by a game a year ago. But, without QB Darian Mort for the last few games, Fairfield hasn't quite looked the same. Going up against an Irish team that has found its groove, this could be a long night for Fairfield. York Catholic has won four straight games since opening 2-2. Not only are the Irish in a good position to defend their D-III title by at least being co-champs, they appear destined to have a chance to defend their district crown, which seemed bleak just a few weeks ago. York Catholic rolled to a 42-7 win vs. the Knights in 2016.
— Reach Patrick Strohecker at firstname.lastname@example.org