Mechanicsburg and Triad will headline a Friday full of interesting football matchups around the county, with the Indians looking to stay perfect and the Cardinals looking to blemish their rivals’ undefeated record.
This game has all the makings of a shootout, with both teams putting up points in bunches in the early stages of the season.
“Our goal is to always shut down the other team as best we can, but they’re going to make plays,” M’burg Coach Kurt Forrest said. “Both sides are going to be very, very excited.”
The Indians have been a juggernaut on both sides of the ball, running and passing at will and slowing opposing offenses to a crawl.
“We’ve been very, very balanced,” Forrest said. “We’re going to take what you give us, but we’re also going to take what we want to do.”
Triad (1-3), meanwhile, has a handful of skill players that feed off the explosiveness of quarterback Trent McIntyre.
Both coaches know McIntyre is a wild card, with Forrest going so far as to say that the Cardinals have a chance to win every time he plays.
Triad Coach Payton Printz knows his defense needs to get better, though, after giving up enough touchdowns to make an arena league team shudder.
Also in the OHC, West Liberty-Salem (3-1) takes on another road test at Greeneview (3-1) this week after nearly falling short in a comeback at Northeastern last Friday.
“They’re an extremely fundamental, disciplined team,” WL-S Coach Dan McGill said of the Rams. “We have to take care of the football – that’s the number one thing in all phases.”
The Tigers are still the same young team they had at the beginning of the year, but McGill sees improvements.
“Experience is a tremendous teacher. We still have a lot of young guys who are first-year starters,” he said. “It seems like guys are taking the coaching. I can’t complain about the effort.”
Urbana (1-3) got dismantled by unbeaten Stebbins last week and has to host improving Tecumseh (2-2) this week.
The Hillclimbers are struggling on both sides of the ball, with a very inexperienced team trying to fill the big shoes of quarterback Nathan Mays and his Mad River Division champions of the past four seasons.
Tecumseh is coming off a big win over Graham – with the Falcons (1-3) hosting Stebbins (4-0) this week.
“(Tecumseh) jumped on us early,” GHS Coach A.J. Woods said. “We had flashes of good play, but on the road, it’s a tough environment.”
Woods knows his Falcons need to be disciplined on defense this week against the triple option of Stebbins.
“The quarterback’s tough. They run the ball like crazy on anybody they play,” Woods said. “It’s a lot of one-on-one tackling.”
Still, the scheme won’t change much to account for the polished option attack.
“We don’t want to change a lot week to week,” Woods said. He added that Graham has a lot of first-year players in a first-year scheme and he wants them to adjust to his system before tweaking it.
Reach Justin Miller at 652-1331 (ext. 1776) or on Twitter @UDC_Miller