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Football

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Bob Mitchell had hoped his 308th and final game as Northwestern's head coach would end with his team hoisting the Eastern Conferene Class AAA trophy.

However, despite Beca's 13-0 win in Friday night's title game in New Tripoli, Mitchell walked off the field proud of his team and the effort it gave.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Heading in to last week's first round of post-season play, I felt pretty confident that I'd be able to pick up a game or two on some of those sitting right in front of me in the Grid Picks race.

Even though I tied the four guys up front with a 10-5 week, it's not good enough if I want to at least try to finish in the top half of the standings.

Monday, November 16, 2009
Northern Lehigh's Cody Remaley (2) is tackled by a pair of Salisbury defenders, including Jake Kovach (on the ground). The Bulldogs' Matt Gill (44) is also shown.

When Northern Lehigh's running game gets going, it's hard to stop.

Salisbury found that out earlier this season and was reminded of it Saturday night in a District 11 Class AA playoff game. The Bulldogs amassed 279 yards on the ground in a 21-6 win over the Falcons Saturday in Slatington to advance to next week's district semifinal.

"It was just power I and double tight," Tout said. "The game came down to us controlling the line of scrimmage.

Monday, November 16, 2009
Panther Valley's Kyle McAvoy (5) dives to break up a pass intended for Tamaqua's Grif Griffiths. The pass was incomplete.

Tamaqua led Panther Valley four times in their District 11 Class AA quarterfinal contest.

As long as the Panthers have Jake Dunn, however, they may be down, but they are never truly out.

The standout senior wide receiver caught nine passes for 145 yards and three touchdowns, including two truly amazing circus catches in the end zone, the last being the game-winner in overtime, as the Panthers pulled out a 32-26 victory over the rival Blue Raiders Saturday night.

The Panthers also used a dramatic goal line stand on the Raiders' overtime possession to preserve the win.

Friday, November 13, 2009

When the regular season is finally over and we take a step into the post-season, it gets to become 'Crunch Time' around our Grid Picks corner.

It's time to really put your nose to the grindstone and (1) try and stay at the top if you're lucky enough to be there or (2) try to pick an upset or two along the way to get yourself at least within striking distance.

Shawn McFarland, Andy Steinmetz and Bob Ford all had 12-3 records last week putting McFarland, Joe Plasko and Steinmetz as the top 3, each a game apart. Ford moved ahead of yours truly and TJ Engle with his big week.

Thursday, November 12, 2009
Rod Heckman/TIMES NEWS Jim Thorpe’s Shane Edwards, left, is congratulated by head coach Mark Rosenberger after being named TIMES NEWS Football Player of the Week. Edwards carried 27 times for 117 yards and threetouchdowns last Friday in a 48-27 win over Lehighton.

Over the last few weeks of the season, Jim Thorpe made some adjustments to its offense - especially in its running game.

And because of those switches, Shane Edwards saw his role change.

Used to getting the ball a handful of times a game, the Olympian junior instead became a workhorse.

Based upon the results, the move was quite favorable for both Thorpe and Edwards.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

SCRANTON PREP AT NORTHWESTERN

WHAT

Eastern Conference Division II (Class AA) semifinal

WHEN

Friday, 7 p.m.

AT STAKE

A berth in the Eastern Conference AA championship game against the winner of Bethlehem Catholic-Coughlin

RECORDS

Northwestern 7-3 overall (7-3 Colonial League); Scranton Prep 7-3 overall (4-2 Lackawanna League Division 2)

KEYS TO THE GAME

* Two run-oriented offense will square off and the battle in the trenches will probably dictate the outcome.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Here they go again.

Three weeks after battling it out in a crucial Anthracite League contest, Tamaqua visits Panther Valley once again, this time on Saturday night at 7 p.m. in a District 11 Class AA quarterfinal match-up.

The two backyard rivals first met on Oct. 23 at Lansford, with the Panthers posting a 20-2 victory over the Blue Raiders on a rainy night that included two power outages at Panther Valley Stadium.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Another regular season is in the books. Ten weeks of high school football has flown past.

It might seem like only yesterday that the nine area high schools were running through summer practices in the heat and humidity of August, but anyone out attending last Friday night's games when temperatures fell into the 20s knows that the 2009 season is now in its home stretch.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Joe Tout and his Northern Lehigh Bulldogs are glad to be back in the District 11 playoffs after a one-year absence.

Now, the 8-2 squad wants to take another step in returning the program to its glory days.

The No. 2 seeded Bulldogs host No. 7 seed Salisbury (4-6) on Saturday night at 7 p.m. in a Class 2A first round matchup.

The two Colonial League teams met during the regular season with Northern Lehigh rolling to a 41-14 victory. The Bulldogs rushed for 432 yards that night and used numerous big plays to send the Falcons a wakeup call.