Sunday, October 25, 2009 Updated: October 26, 10:05 AM ET
News and notes for Week 8
By Mike Loveday ESPNRISE.com
There are six undefeated teams in Class 3A this season -- more than any
other classification. The list will soon narrow to five as River
Hill (8-0) and Atholton (8-0) play this week. With four of those
undefeated teams ranked in the top 13 in the MDVarsity.com Media State Poll,
there is a decent chance the 3A title game will be a game of undefeated
Crusoe Gongbay has rushed for more than 1,500 yards this season.
An interesting note is that every region, except two, has at least one
undefeated team. The 4A and 2A West regions are without undefeated
teams. Sherwood (7-1) took down Winston Churchill (7-1) this week in a
4A West game.
Toughest road to title?
Much has been made of the minefield the 3A West region is this season,
but 4A South may be the toughest region to escape unscathed. Wise has
been the dominant team this season, tying a Maryland state record with
its seventh straight shutout last week, but Eleanor Roosevelt went 10-0
last year and lost in the first round to Wise. The battle for
second and third in the region may change with Flowers and Suitland
vying for position. ER's loss to Bowie it may keep the Raiders in
fourth where they will get a chance to avenge last year's first round
exit. No matter the order, it is always difficult to defeat the same
team twice in a season. For example, only 16 points have separated the
three games the four teams have played against each other so far this
Wins of note
Neither team is in the Top 25, but both Forestville and Riverdale
Baptist had wins, I feel, are worth noting. Riverdale Baptist defeated
Friendly 21-6 and Forestville ousted Douglass-PG, 22-20. Forestville's
win is their fourth straight since losing to Riverdale Baptist on Sept.
18. The Knights are in a good position to make the Class 1A playoffs
with Fairmont Heights and Largo upcoming.
Made to be broken
Arundel's Ronnie Harris is the first receiver to crack the 1,000-yard
barrier for receivers this season. The senior receiver has 39 career
touchdowns, one shy of the public school record of 40 held by former
Arundel receiver Brandon Johnson-Farrell. Barring injury, Harris should
at least finish second in career touchdowns. Ten more touchdowns this
season would give him several more records -- most touchdowns in a season
(27) and tied for the career record (49).
Out of the 183 public schools in Maryland, only two start with the
letter Q - Quince Orchard and Queen Anne's. If that was not selected
enough company, both of those schools are 8-0.
Rockville's Crusoe Gongbay is quietly having one of the better seasons
for running backs. The junior has rushed for 1,225 yards and 19
touchdowns. Those numbers have been put up in a little more than six
games, having missed one entire game and most of a second this season
with a sprained ankle.
It is a testament to their seasons that Darius Jennings and Marcus Coker
are still first and third respectively on the rushing list after not
playing this week. Jennings (1,650) and Gilman were off this week while
Coker (1,321) sat out DeMatha's game against O'Connell.
Heading into the final two weeks of the season there are a few big games
that could determine who heads to the playoffs and who stays home.
Archbishop Spalding has a big game this week with John Carroll that
could determine who makes it to the MIAA B conference championship game.
Spalding is 6-1 in conference (7-1 overall) and John Carroll is 5-2
(6-2). A Spalding win will give them a rematch with Boys' Latin who
handed the Cavaliers their only loss. A John Carroll win would give the team
the tie-breaker and put them in the title game if the Patriots defeat
Archbishop Curley in the final game of the regular season.
Staying in the MIAA, but moving to the A conference there is a big game
in Owings Mills this week with McDonogh playing host to Calvert Hall. A
McDonogh win combined with a Gilman win over Mount St. Joseph this week
would mean an Eagles/Greyhounds game in the final regular season game for
the conference title on the line.
Seneca Valley's (5-3) playoff hopes may have ended with a loss to Quince
Orchard last week, but maybe not. Seneca fans will be watching this
week's Damascus/Clarksburg game with earnest. No matter which team wins
will put them in a record tie with Seneca Valley, but depending on which
team wins will matter in the point standings. First, Seneca Valley will
need to win at home against Walt Whitman this week.