Backyard brawls highlight Week 3 Lower Bucks football slate

By RICK FORTENBAUGH,, @RickFort7 on Twitter

The games have nothing to do with any league standings or titles, but from a local rivalry standpoint, it’s one of the biggest weekends of the Lower Bucks County football season.

The reason is there are three backyard brawls on tap with Council Rock North traveling to Pennsbury, Council Rock South hosting Neshaminy and Truman playing at Bensalem.

All of these teams will begin Suburban One League play next week, but for now, the focus is squarely on gaining some local bragging rights.

WEEK 3: SEPT 18-19

Council Rock North (1-1) at Pennsbury (1-1), Friday night, 7:00

After massive defensive breakdowns in week one, Rock North rebounded with a solid 39-29 win over Central Bucks South. Pennsbury fell by the score of 14-0 to powerhouse La Salle, but it actually played better than in its opening loss to Council Rock South. Something has to give here. Led by standout QB Brandon McIlwain, Rock North is averaging 36 points a game. Pennsbury has just 13 points in two outings. Defensively it’s the exact opposite with Pennsbury having yielded just 20 points, as opposed to Rock North’s 85. Pennsbury’s defense relies more on speed than size so that could help against an athlete like McIlwain. What the Falcons need to do is find the end zone. It’s been a while since Rock North has been able to deal with Pennsbury’s Ground and Pound – last year the Falcons put 57 points on the board – and its defense is going to have to take it up to another level to slow down the likes of hard-running fullback Chris Rupprecht. Could be a great game, but Pennsbury’s defense gives it the edge.

Neshaminy (1-1) at Council Rock South (1-1), Friday night, 7:00

Here is another game with the potential to be a thriller. Neshaminy is coming off a loss to Downingtown West, while Rock South rebounded from its opening loss by crunching Bensalem. Neshaminy needs to get off a better start than it has in its first two games. It got away with a slow start in a wild victory over Montclair in week one, but keep in mind the New Jersey team was beaten again last week. The Redskins have an edge in the speed department and will look to hit some big plays. Rock South will hope to pound Neshaminy with its option game and control the clock. If Vince Bedesem’s Rock South team had a true speed back, it would really be tough. Don’t be surprised if this could still go either way in the fourth quarter.

Truman (1-1) at Bensalem (0-2), Saturday night, 7:00

The Tigers got a reality check last week in a 38-7 loss, but it came on the road against a highly-regarded Upper Dublin team. Bensalem is struggling on both sides of the ball. An interesting side note is Bensalem is now led by former Truman coach Ed Cubbage. These teams usually play each other tough, but the Tigers have a balanced offense and too many weapons for the home team.

Bristol (1-1) at Kennett (0-2), Friday night, 7:00

Coming off a 42-7 thrashing at the hands of Avon Grove, Kennett is 0-2 and has been already been scorched for 91 points. Last year it was 1-9. On the flip side, it is a Class AAAA team and Bristol is barely a Class AA. The Warriors are coming off a 21-13 loss to Pennington, but showed some good things in that game and are clearly well coached with John Greiner in charge. Warrior quarterback R.J. Collins isn’t flashy, but he does make plays and is a competitor.

Conwell-Egan (2-0) at Upper Moreland (2-0), Friday night, 7:00

If you go by comparative scores, the home team is the favorite. Conwell-Egan beat Archbishop Carroll, 6-0, in its opener. Last week Upper Moreland ripped Carroll, 27-6. The Eagles are coming off a 14-6 against Martin Luther King in which they once again largely failed to get their offense untracked. On the other hand, the defense has been solid. This week it will be tested by Upper Moreland’s one-two running punch of Rodney Morgan and Nick DeLuca. A tough one to call.

Immaculate Conception (1-0) at Morrisville (1-1), Friday night, 7:00

This is sort of a mystery game. Immaculate Conception of North Jersey didn’t even have a varsity team last year and elected to play on the JV level. You have to like that from a Morrisville viewpoint, but don’t be so sure. Immaculate Conception opened its season in fine style with a 20-7 victory in which Christian Marsette ran for two TDs and the defense was solid. Morrisville, meanwhile, got crunched by George, although it looks like the Newtown preppies may have one of their better teams in recent years. Considering a parochial school can load up at any second, the Dawgies had better be ready.

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