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Written by: Carl Frederick on Thursday, November 25th, 2021
Lampeter-Strasburg gathers for the final team at home this season
District 3 4A Championship Preview: Lampeter-Strasburg vs Bishop McDevittA match-up between these two powerhouses had seemed bound to happen since the start of the season. Facing off 5 times in the past decade (Bishop McDevitt leads the series 4-1) there seemed to be a sense since early in the playoffs that these juggernauts would collide.The Bishop McDevitt Crusaders come into this game with an explosive offense lead by Freshman sensation Stone Saunders. Saunders has taken the District by storm throwing for 42 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions. Expect to see his name at the top of many recruiting sites for the next couple of seasons; he has already picked up several Division 1 offers. The Freshman has a number of weapons to throw to including Mario Easterly (46 receptions, 875 yards, 13 touchdowns) and Kamil Foster (33 receptions, 808 yards, 13 touchdowns). Sophomore Rico Scott has 9 touchdowns as well.The Crusaders high powered offense will face arguably its toughest test when the Pioneers come to town Friday evening. Led by Nick Delgrande (Coastal Carolina commit), Drexton Frank (70 total tackles, 8 TFLS) and Giovanni Malatesta (5 Interceptions), the Pioneers recorded their school record 5th shutout in their 31-0 stomping of Kennard-Dale last week.Lampeter-Strasburg has multiple two-way stars including Malatesta, who last week snagged an interception and caught a touchdown pass. Giovanni is an all-league athlete in multiple sports and just last August committed to play baseball for Washington College. He stopped by to talk about his love for both sports, his special senior class and what to expect this Friday:Carl Frederick: Talking with Berkeley last week (view it here), many of you play on both sides of the ball, which position do you prefer?Giovanni Malatesta: I don’t necessarily have a preference. Some days I love making tackles and guarding receivers. While other days I love running routes and scoring touchdowns. CF: You guys have a long history with some classic battles against Bishop McDevitt, what can you tell us about them?GM: They are a very solid team. Fast, athletic, and well disciplined. They have a very solid program and we are up to the challenge.CF: During your recruiting process, did you consider anywhere where you could play both baseball and football? (Malatesta committed to Washington College for baseball this past August).GM: I did consider it but I just want to stick to one sport in college. I am very sad that this will be my last ever football season but all good things must come to an end. I am very fortunate enough to be attending the college I have committed to (Washington College). I loved the coach and they have been with me through my entire recruiting process. I am very excited to be attending there next fall.CF: Give us a play on offense or maybe a coverage on defense that you enjoy the most?GM: I love all of our plays. I love different plays in certain situations. Our coaches are fantastic at choosing the right play for the right time during the game.CF: You are a part of a special senior class, what stands out most to you about everything?GM: The thing that stands out the most to me about our senior class is the bond that we all have. We have been playing with each other since midgets and have always talked about our senior season and winning the district title as seniors together.It is obvious to see how special this potential District title would be for Maletesta and his fellow seniors. His class has had the most success in school history and you can tell that they do not want it to end. Win or lose, this Pioneer class will go down as one of the best. Can the Crusaders end their magical run? Follow me for updates @carljfred going to be a cold hard fought battle.Hats off to:– Jadyn Jones finished the season with nearly 1400 yards on the ground as he and the Wilson Bulldogs were one score away from winning the District 3 6A title. Jones is bound to get several more FCS offers and wherever he ends up, that team will be getting a special player.– Speaking of offers, Wilson Quarterback Brad Hoffman is picking them up by the day, with offers coming in from Morgan State and Pitt State. Congrats to Hoffman, who is as tough as they come and will fit in with whatever offense a team may run.– Congrats to the Harrisburg Cougars on capturing the District 3 6A Championship. They had a back-and-forth battle against Wilson with Junior Mahkai Hopkins leading the way rushing for 128 yards on 25 carries. They return home to face State College (7-5) in the first round of the PIAA State playoffs.– The Kennard-Dale Rams historic season came to halt last Friday against LS. It was a marvelous season for Head Coach Chris Grube’s squad nabbing their first playoff win in school history. They battled all night against the Pioneers. You have to admire what they accomplished this season finishing 10-2.
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