Scranton Prep (6-4)
7 p.m. today
Eastern Conference 2A Semifinal
The Coaches: Prep's Nick Donato (143-88-2, 21st year); Crestwood's Greg Myers (48-47, 8th year)
Last Meeting: first meeting
All-Time Series: first meeting
Quick Fact: Of the teams' 13 combined victories, only one came against an opponent with a winning record. Prep edged Wyoming Area 12-6 in the season opener.
What's At Stake: The winner plays the winner of Muhlenberg at Coughlin for the title. Crestwood will host if it win. Prep will be on the road if it wins.
Scouting Prep: After starting the season 5-1, a three-game losing streak to the Lackawanna Conference elite sank Prep's district hopes. The Cavaliers, though, rebounded with a 47-19 win over West Scranton.
The victory was typical of Prep. RB Marshall Kupinski ran for three TDs, pushing his total to 16 this season. He reached 1,200 yards on the ground as well. QB Griffin Dibileo was once again effective and has throw for over 1,200 yards with 15 TDs and only three picks.
Prep held four opponents, including Wyoming Area, to seven points or less before the losing streak. LBs Kupinski and Owen Perih are the top tacklers. Noah Beh – a 6-foot-6, 235-pound junior – is the top pass rusher and a Division I college prospect.
Scouting Crestwood: The Comets controlled their own destiny to the D2-3A playoffs, but lost two of their last three games. They were outscored 35-6 in the second half in last Friday's 42-20 loss to Coughlin.
The defense allowed Coughlin's Zac Evans to rush for a career-high 262 yards, and Kupinski's running style is similar to Evans', perhaps with a touch more speed. The Comets have produced only one turnover in the last three games. On offense, RB Frank Aigeldinger was bottled up for 37 yards on 10 carries after having some impressive games down the stretch.
The matchup in the trnenches could be good. Prep isn't very big up front, but is very quick.
What To Expect: Prep can run the ball like Coughlin and adds a very solid passing element. Crestwood hasn't fared well against teams that can do both well, so the Comets must bring their A-game to advance.
-- John Erzar