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Written by: Brian Ptashinski on Thursday, November 18th, 2021
Taking a Look Back to Week 11 and Previewing Week 12 Games Featuring Teams From District XI.
District XI crowned five of the six classification champions this past weekend. We seen some great team efforts as well as fantastic individual performances in some very entertaining contests:
1A Championship WILLIAMS VALLEY 28 TR-VALLEY 13 at NORTH SCHUYLKILL.
Williams Valley avenged a 14-0 loss to Tri-Valley a couple of weeks prior by using a strong second half effort in capturing the District title. Isaac Whiteash completed 9 of 18 passes for 100 yards and two touchdowns. Running back Alex Ahenbach picked up 117 yards on 27 carries and one score as well as throwing a touchdown pass. Brady Evans contributed with 6 receptions for 108 yards and 2 touchdowns. This was the third consecutive District championship.
2A Championship NORTHERN LEHIGH 64 PALMERTON 34 at LEHIGHTON HS.
Saturday afternoon in a steady rain falling at the Multi-Purpose Stadium in Lehighton. Northern Lehigh behind the running of Matt Frame routed Palmereton. Frame rushed for a personal best 334 yards and five touchdowns in the win on only 19 carries. Trevor Amorim picked up 70 yards and found the end zone twice in the win. It was the Bulldogs first District championship since 2010 and coach Joe Tout got his 100th win as well.
3A Championship NORTH SCHUYLKILL 40 JIM THORPE 7 at LEHIGHTON HS
In the nightcap at Lehighton on Saturday, North Schuylkill Spartans blitzed the OLympians of Jim Thorpe to advance to the state playoffs. The Spartans using their speed and quickness to overwhelm the Olympians as they scored on their first six possessions of the first half. Quarterback Jake Hall rushed for over a 100 yards and had a 30 yard score and threw two scoring passes to Joey Flails, who also had a 68 yard punt return in the rout.
4A Championship ALLENTOWN CENTRAL CATHOLIC 21 NORTHWESTERN 14 at NORTHERN LEHIGH HS
Maybe in the surprise of the weekend the 8-3 Vikings of Allentown Central Catholic knocked off previously unbeaten Northwestern Lehigh Tigers. This was the fourth meeting in district playoffs between these two schools. The Wing-T offense of the Vikings kept the Tiger defense on their heels much of the night. Caiden Shaffer ran for 165 yards in the game and scored three times. The game went back and forth on scoring after Shaffer scored first for the Vikings to take 7-0 lead. With score tied at 14, Shaffer scored from 8 yards out to tie the score at 14. On the the ensuing kickoff the Tigers fumbled the return and ACC would take advantage as Shaffer score from 5 yards to make it 21-14. A last minute pass from Justin Holmes to Taylor Wickert was incomplete in the end zone thanks to Matt Keyes deflecting the ball away in the end zone preserving the win.
5A Championship EAST STROUDSBURG SOUTH 47 WHITEHALL 41 Overtime Lehighton HS
The game of the weekend took place between East Stroudsburg South and Whitehall Friday night. The Cavaliers came back from being down 27-6 to advance with a 47-41 win in overtime. Quarterback Bobby McClosky connected with Shane Bulley in the flat for a touchdown that gave his team the win. McClosky ran for 142 yards and threw for 283 in the contest.
6A Semifinals EMMAUS 21 PARKLAND 14 FREEDOM 21 NORTHAMPTON 9
Emmaus revenged an earlier season loss to top seeded Parkland Friday night 21-14, behind Jared Groller’s efforts to assist his team’s 21 unanswered points for the come-from-behind vicory as the Green Hornets trailed 7-0. A trick pass play from Tyson Karrot to Jaiden Robinson for a 52 yard score keyed the rally. Karrot took a hand-off from QB Josiah Williams before tossing the ball to Robinson. Groller rushed for 65 yards after intermission and scored the game winner after recovering a Trojan fumble at the five. At Northampton the Freedom Patriots ended the KonKrete Kids bid to stay undefeated and move into the championship game with a 21-9 win. QB Brian Taylor ran for two scores and picked up 143 yards on the night on 13 carries and completed 5 of 12 passes for 43 yards in the win.
Here is a look to what those teams advancing to the state tournament will be facing and the District XI 6A Championship is on the line Friday night at Whitehall Zephyr Stadium:
1A WILLIAMS VALLEY VIKINGS(9-2) vs (10-0) OLD FORGE BLUE DEVILS at DUNMORE HS
The upset win by the Vikings over Tri-Valley last week will setup a first round state playoff game with District 2 power Old Forge, who comes into the contest unbeaten. Old Forge comes into the game averaging 40 points/game and has four shutouts on the season. The Blue Devils are led by Hezekiah Deitz who has rushed for 727 yards on 73 carries and scored 9 times. Josh Spindler has added 501 yards on 51 touches and 7 touchdowns. Quarter back James Sobol completed 74 of 99 passes on the season for 1,338 yards and 17 touchdowns. Alex Achenbach leads the Vikings offense in rushing with 150 yards per game he has touched the ball 256 times for 1,657 yards and 16 touchdowns. Quarterback is 90 of 178 completions for 1,334 yards and 14 scores but does have 11 interceptions. Brady Evans is the leading receiver with 42 catches for 789 yards and 12 touchdowns. I think this game will be closer than expected but I think the Blue Devils advance 38-21.
2A LACKAWANNA TRAIL LIONS(8-3) at (9-3) NORTHERN LEHIGH BULLDOGS
Northern Lehigh comes into this contest on a roll winning their last six games after losing a shootout to District XI 3A Champions North Schuylkill 56-42. The Bulldogs other losses were to two of the top teams Northwestern Lehigh 34-33 and Notre Dame Green Pond 34-27. Northern Lehigh led by quarterback Dylan Smoyer 80 of 134 passing 1,437 yards 18 touchdown and just 5 picks. Running back Matt Frame has 745 yards on 103 carries and 11 touchdowns. Trevor Amorim has caught 34 passes for 720 yards and 5 scores. Trail out of District 2 is run dominate team as Owen Lisk has only thrown the ball 53 times and completed 21 on the season for 376 yards with 5 touchdowns. Kody Cresswell leads the ground attack for the Lions with 1,079 yards rushing and 13 scores. Evan Litwin is the leading receiver with 8 catches for 167 yards and 3 touchdowns. With this a home game for the Bulldogs, I believe they will advance 48-21.
3A (10-1) NORTH SCHUYLKILL SPARTANS vs (9-1) Neumann-Goretti Saints at Cardinal O’Hara
North Schuylkill will have to travel to Philadelphia suburbs Friday night to face the always formidable Saints of Neumann-Goretti. This Spartan team is fast and plays at a frantic pace as they snap the ball quickly in their potent offense. I think North Schuylkill gets the win 28-21.
4A (12-0) JERSEY SHORE BULLDOGS at (9-3) ALLENTOWN CENTRAL CATHOLIC VIKINGS at J. Birney Crum Stadium. Friday night
The unbeaten Bulldogs are led by quarterback Brady Jordan is 95 of 208 passing with 1,639 yards and 8 touchdowns Jordan also gained 930 yards rushing on 114 carries scoring four times. Hayden Packer has 992 yards on 159 touches and 18 touchdowns. Cayden Hess leads the receiving corps with 45 receptions and 826 yards and 9 scores. The Vikings of Central Catholic have key wins over Parkland, Emmaus and Whiteall, along with last week’s District championship win over Northwestern Lehigh. Quarterback Tamlin Ferguson has thrown for 1,38 yards on 14 of 173 passing and five touchdowns. Caiden Shaffer had 165 yards rushing against Northwestern last week and three touchdowns. Griffen Patridge is the leading receiver with 496 yards on 39 catches and 5 touchdowns. This should be a tight game, I believe though with the kind of schedule the Vikings played in the EPC should bode well moving on Central Catholic 31 Jersey Shore 28
5A (10-1) ERIE CATHEDRAL PREP RAMBLERS vs (9-3) EAST STROUDSBURG SOUTH CAVALIERS at Bald Eagle Area HS.
Perennial power Cathedral Prep will face a tough challenge from District XI 5A Champions East Stroudsburg South, who showed no quit though being down 27-6 last week to Whitehall. Quarterback Bobby McClosky has 2,032 yards passing on the season on 129 of 227 passing and 27 touchdowns. Colin Burdain leads the team in receptions with 38 for 743 yards along with 13 scores. Running back Ron Blake has gained 1,068 yards on 131 carries and found the end zone 21 times. Carter Barnes directs the offense for the Ramblers completeing 63 of 120 passes for 1,1136 yards and 19 touchdowns. Michael Parks III has rushed for 1,381 yards and 14 scores. Teammate Suhtaun Lewis, a Sophomore has gained an additional 629 yards on 64 touches and has scored seven times. I see East Stroudsburg South playing a competitive game but in the end the Ramblers come out on top 35-28.
6A (9-3) EMMAUS GREEN HORNETS vs (10-2) BETHLEHEM FREEDOM PATRIOTS at Whitehall HS
Freedom is the hottest team in the EPC winners of eight straight games and scoring at least 24 points in those wins. Emmaus did defeat Freedom 13-6 in week two but the Patriots look to renege that loss come Friday night. Freedom is led by quarterback Brian Taylor 85 of 164 passing for 1,374 yrds and 15 touchdowns. Deante Crawford leads the team in rushing 217 carries 1,397 yards and 22 scores. Owen Johnson is the leading receiver with 528 yards on 24 catches and six touchdowns. Emmaus coming off a come-from-behind win over rival Parkland 21-14, have won two in a row after back-to back losses to Easton and Parkland 17-13 and 25-14 respectively. The Hornets arte led by quarterback Josiah Williams 99 of 212 1,607 yards and 16 touchdowns. Tylik Jarvis has 499 yards rushing, Sam Moratori 462 yards and Jared Groller 359 yards. Jaiden Robinson has caught 31 passes for 513 yards with five scores. Freedom will look to capture a District XI title and should proceed in the playoffs 31-21.
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