While title races in the Catholic, Central and Del Val leagues intensify, fans of the Inter-Ac League can rejoice. It’s opening weekend.
It should be an exciting six weeks. With quarterback Drew Gunther showing the way, Malvern Prep (6-0) is considered the league favorite. The Friars are one of five Inter-Ac teams with winning records.
Delco’s two Inter-Ac teams did fairly well in nonleague action. Episcopal Academy (4-1), No. 3 in the Super 7, has won with low-scoring and come-from-behind drama. Haverford School (2-2) has already fared better than last year’s one-win Fords team, but are far from a complete package.
In addition to the Garnet Valley-Radnor showdown, which is previewed in today’s Daily Times, here are five games to watch in Delco this weekend:
Upper Darby (6-1) at Marple Newtown (4-3), 7
The Royals earned their fifth straight victory with a 47-0 rout of Harriton. Defensively, they are allowing the fewest yards per game (173.3) in Delco. Kevin Kerwood completed 10 of 14 passing attempts for 191 yards and a career-high four touchdowns against Harriton. Marson Weh had three catches for 111 yards and two scores, while Kareem Adams ran for 99 yards and a TD.
The Tigers leaned on All-Delco running back Marlon Weathers in a 35-21 decision over Conestoga. Weathers enjoyed his best game of the year, going for 169 yards and three TDs.
Haverford (6-1) at Strath Haven (3-4), 7
The Fords might be the most dangerous team in the county, coming off a 70-7 drubbing of Penncrest. In limited action, senior quarterback Jake Ruane passed for 117 yards and a touchdown. He is 69 yards shy of becoming the career passing leader in school history. Trey Blair hauled in a touchdown pass and ran for a score, while running back Chasen Wint scampered for three TDs.
The Panthers suffered their third loss in a row at Ridley, 42-21. Turnovers and ineffectiveness on defense resulted in the Panthers’ second-half downfall. Zack Hussein ran for two touchdowns and is the third-leading rusher in the county with 930 yards.
Chester (2-5) at Academy Park (6-1), 7
The Clippers put forth their most complete effort of the season, and snapped a four-game skid in the process. In a 38-0 blanking of Glen Mills, running back Ish Maultsby had three touchdowns (two receiving, one running) and quarterback Tahree Fuller-Bryan eclipsed the 1,000-yard plateau for the season. Defensively, the Clippers forced nine turnovers and received tremendous efforts from senior defensive end Tylee Williams-Clark and junior defensive back Rafiqe Hilliard.
AP outslugged Chichester, 52-39. It wasn’t pretty, but the Knights improved to 2-0 in the league as quarterback Skylor Fillis threw for 142 yards with touchdowns to Zion Bradley, Barry Brown and Jarrick Wilcox. The Knights are one of seven Delco teams averaging more than 30 points per contest (32.3).
SCHA (5-1) at Episcopal Academy (4-1), 7
The Churchmen prepped for the start of Inter-Ac play by handling Salesianum (Del.), 13-6. EA relied on its ground game as All-Delco DeeWil Barlee ran for 137 yards and 13 carries, while Billy Adams accounted for both TD runs.
EA’s first five games came against teams from four different states. The Churchmen have victories over Lawrenceville (N.J.), Hill School (Pa.), St. Mary’s (Md.) and Salesianum (Del.).
Springside Chestnut Hill Academy is averaging 41.5 points per game. Last week the Blue Devils steamrolled Springfield (Montco), 42-0. Senior quarterback Aaron Angelos has thrown for 1,111 yards and 15 touchdowns. Wide receivers Ke’Shawn Williams and Pat Elliott have been a dynamic duo in the passing game.
Interboro (2-5) at Chichester (3-3), 1
The Bucs made things slightly interesting in the first half of their game last Friday against Penn Wood (6-1), but ultimately could not keep pace with the Patriots. Interboro’s rushers amassed 201 yards, the team’s second-highest output of the season. Evan Sorrentino led the way with 108 yards on nine carries. Defensively the Bucs are allowing 40 points and 400 yards per game.
Chichester’s Nate Decenzi threw for a school-record 317 yards and four touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough to beat Academy Park. Chi has dropped back-to-back decisions by completely opposite scores (6-3 to Glen Mills and 52-39 to AP).