By Rick O’Brien
Conestoga has a solid chance at contending for its first Central League championship since 2005 if it can stay healthy.
Pioneers coach John Vogan was missing 23 of his 66 players because of injuries in Friday’s scrimmage against Downingtown West. “We’re a little banged up right now, but we’ll be OK,” he said.
Conestoga’s offense is spurred by quarterback Tim Miller. The 6-foot-3, 190-pounder, who will play baseball at Richmond, threw for 1,622 yards and 16 touchdowns last season.
Miller is joined by tailback Corey Manning, fullback Daquan Perry, multi-purpose threat Jon Locantore, and wide receiver Pete Jean.
By Rick O’Brien
The proposal to expand Pennsylvania high school football from four to six classifications by 2016 is still in play.
It was discussed again by the PIAA board of directors last month and tabled until the strategic planning and football steering committees meet on Sept. 16.
The proposal was developed by Bob Tonkin, a member of District 9’s football steering committee, and first revealed in January. The primary goals are to create a more even playing field and reduce the season from 16 to 15 weeks. Last year’s state finals in Hershey ended on Dec. 13.
Three of eight proposals remain on the table – staying with four classifications; expanding to six evenly distributed classifications; or switching to a Super 700 classification (schools with 700 or more students would compete at the highest level) with the five other classifications split evenly.
By David Mika
Eastern PA football.com has produced a series called “100 players in 100 days”. This is the latest addition regarding a strong talent from Prep Charter, the Panther’s first opponent this year.
School: Prep Charter
40-Yard Dash: 4.8
Class of: 2016
Position(s): LT/ DE
Jersey Number: 72
Every year at the beginning of the season we repeat this article which originally was posted on January 10, 2002. This has been our way of honoring one of Haven football’s most dedicated fans. Hard to believe Jim has been gone almost 14 years. We miss him but whenever we gaze into the stands we sometimes think we catch just a glimpse of him sitting in his favorite seat. We miss you guy!
Haven Friday night football just got even better! Pay your $5 adult admission and get this great souvenir ticket. On the back is a coupon for two Cocco’s Pizza locations for $3.50 off a large or x-large pizza. Wow! Football and pizza is all ready a great combination and now Cocco’s makes it even a better deal! Call ahead and pick up a pizza on the way home from the game! Be sure to tell the people at Cocco’s that you appreciate their continued support of Panther football!
Rick O’Brien, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Inquirer’s Preseason Top 25. Last season’s record in parentheses:
1. St. Joseph’s Prep (11-3). The Hawks’ bid for a third straight Class AAAA state title is headed by tailback D’Andre Swift, two-way back Benny Walls, and offensive linemen Charlie Holsopple and Ed Mooney. Four-year starter Joe DuMond is a force at fullback and defensive tackle.
2. Imhotep Charter (11-2). Albie Crosby’s squad has ample speed and size. The Panthers are led by tight end Naseir Upshur, offensive linemen Johncarlo Valentin (6-5, 340) and Yasir Durant (6-7, 330), linebacker Shaka Toney, and running backs Tyliek Raynor and Mike Waters.
3. Archbishop Wood (14-1). The drive for repeat state glory in Class AAA is keyed by quarterback Anthony Russo, lineman Kurt Stengel, and receivers Mark Webb, James Gillespie, and Jordan Johnson. End Mack Schwartz and Linebacker Sebastian Silva are defensive leaders.
Another glorious morning to watch a football scrimmage. Temps in the low 70’s with little humidity. A light breeze and a few shade trees kept the 100 or so fans very comfortable. Varsity came out first and played a traditional first half with yard markers, scoreboard and time clock. It started out pretty evenly but PJP started to get some control as they moved the ball down to the red zone but the Panther defense held and things started to change. As the Haven ‘O’ line began to find it’s footing the running backs just kept running “up the gut” for 5-7 yards and more and just kept pounding the ball. Some end sweeps and counters really gained yardage and Haven managed one score. The defense kept aggressive and, while allowing yards, kept PJP in check for the rest of the varsity scrimmage. JV also got off to a slow start but then dominated in the later part of the scrimmage on both side of the ball scoring a few times. Webmaster’s note: Catch a one minute video highlight of the scrimmage on Facebook!
A great way to end the last scrimmage and a terrific tune-up for what will be a tough game against Prep Charter. The opener is at home with the kick-off scheduled for 7:30 PM. If you can’t make the game you can always listen to it right here at www.havenfootball.net. Our broadcast begins at 7:15 PM!
By Matt Smith
Coach: Rich Gentile (21st season)
2014 Record: 6-6 (4-5 Central League)
2014 In Two Sentences: The Royals endured a lot of growing pains last fall, so it’s a testament to the coaching staff that the team was able to post a .500 record despite working in several newcomers to varsity. When it was going well, the Royals were one of the most dangerous offensive teams in the county (they played Springfield to a 34-33 loss), but lacked consistency on the defensive side of the ball.
For those fans who like to follow the BIG picture in AAA football here are the preseason rankings from PA Football News. Archbishop Wood is the defending champion.
(2014 record in parenthesis)
1. Imhotep Charter (12-2) – District 12
Talent is not an issue for the Panthers. With several players eventually heading to Division 1 colleges including TE Naseir Upshur and RB Tyliek Raynor. They will win a lot of games, but can they get past the defending champs. On paper, it looks possible which is why they get the top spot in the preseason.
2. Archbishop Wood (14-1) – District 12
Wood has three state championships now and with QB Anthony Russo back for his senior season, a fourth is probably. Obviously, they have to get out of southeastern PA which is always a challenge, but the Vikings have horses to continue to be a factor again.
By Matt Smith
Coach: Chris Britton (Second season)
2014 Record: 12-1 (9-0 Central League)
2014 In Two Sentences: The Cougars triumphed over all comers for 12 consecutive weeks and won the program’s first Central League title since 1994. They suffered their one and only loss of the year to Great Valley in the District One Class AAA championship game.
Key Departures: Adam Krauter (LB), Brian Layden (DL-OL), Brian Allen (QB), Lucas Spence (DB), Colin Bracconier (RB).