WVC football Week 6 at a glance

By John Erzar - [email protected]
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Coughlin (0-5) at Dallas (5-0)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Coughlin’s Ciro Cinti (71-66, 13th year); Dallas’ Rich Mannello (20-18, 4th year)

Last Meeting: Coughlin 28-0 in 2017

All-Time Series: Dallas leads 21-14

Scouting Coughlin: The Crusaders had to juggle things when QB Garrett Wardle was injured early in a 25-14 loss to Pittston Area. Sa’id Hollis took the snaps and produced some yardage on the ground, something lacking all season. Still, they won’t surprise Dallas.

Scouting Dallas: Dallas goes for its sixth consecutive win, something the program hasn’t accomplished since 2012. The Mountaineers were outstanding in a 42-6 win vs. Wyoming Valley West. QB Michael Starbuck throws a pretty ball, making it easier for the receivers.

What To Expect: Dallas is too much for Coughlin to handle.

GAR (1-4) at Northwest (1-4)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: GAR’s Paul Wiedlich Jr. (53-42, 9th year); Northwest’s Lon Hazlet (106-103, 20th year)

Last Meeting: Northwest 45-8 in 2017

All-Time Series: GAR leads 9-7

Scouting GAR: The Grenadiers faced two D2-3A contenders the past two weeks and the results haven’t been pretty. They had 114 yards in a 41-7 loss to Wyoming Area, with 61 of them coming on one play. Eight turnovers in the last two games aren’t helping matters.

Scouting Northwest: The Rangers were victims of big plays, including a 97-yard kick return TD, in a 35-21 loss to Lake-Lehman. The schedule, though, was top heavy and Northwest could go on a bit of a roll if things come together.

What To Expect: Northwest in a close one.

Hazleton Area (2-3) at Delaware Valley (2-3)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Hazleton Area’s Mike Brennan (130-93, 17th year); DelVal’s Keith Olsommer (135-84, 20th year)

Last Meeting: DelVal 31-3 in 2017

All-Time Series: DelVal leads 9-5

Scouting Hazleton Area: Well, at least the Cougars are exciting. They followed up their second one-point loss with a 34-32 victory over Wallenpaupack. Will Garcia’s field goal with less than a minute left was the difference and came after Hazleton Area blew a 14-point lead.

Scouting DelVal: A perennial D2 power for a decade, DelVal isn’t as strong as past years. The offense was bad two weeks ago before pulling out a 21-20 overtime win against Honesdale. It went flat in last Friday’s 27-14 loss to North Pocono. No numbers stand out.

What To Expect: If the Cougars can get their legs after a long bus ride, they could come home with a win.

Pittston Area (3-2) at West Scranton (2-3)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Pittston Area’s Nick Barbieri (9-7, 2nd year); West Scranton’s Brian Fahey (13-33, 5th year)

Last Meeting: Pittston Area 30-21 in 1971

All-Time Series: Pittston Area leads 4-0

Scouting Pittston Area: The Patriots held off Coughlin 25-14 for a victory. The running game received a big boost from RB Jordan O’Boyle, who came out of nowhere to rush for 172 yards. Pittston Area still hasn’t topped 200 yards on the ground this season, so enthusiasm needs tempering.

Scouting West Scranton: The Invaders have been difficult to figure out. They have impressive wins vs. North Pocono and Lakeland, but have also failed big time against the LFC’s top dogs. They were trampled last Saturday by Scranton Prep 46-7.

What To Expect: Don’t know, don’t know, don’t know.

Scranton (1-4) at Williamsport (3-2)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Scranton’s Steve Shumbres (0-4, 1st year); Williamsport’s Chuck Crews (39-42, 8th year)

Last Meeting: Williamsport 38-34 in 2017

All-Time Series: Williamsport leads 4-0

Scouting Scranton: The Knights picked up their first victory, 28-16 over winless Abington Heights, last Friday. However, it did show a problem they’ve had this season – a lack of offense. The running game is averaging 131 yards while the passing game is stuck in neutral.

Scouting Williamsport: RB Treyson Potts had 100 yards each rushing and receiving in a 49-26 win vs. Crestwood. The run defense, though, allowed over 300 rushing yards for a fourth consecutive game. The unit could straighten things out tonight.

What To Expect: Williamsport has too much offense to falter.

Susquehanna (3-2) at Meyers (3-2)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Susquehanna’s Kyle Cook (26-34, 6th year); Meyers’ Jeff Labatch (22-17, 4th year)

Last Meeting: Meyers 32-0 in 2015

All-Time Series: Meyers leads 2-0

Scouting Susquehanna: The Sabres’ three victories have come against opponents who are a combined 2-13. They topped winless Montrose 36-6, but considering Montrose’s incredible struggles perhaps the margin should have been larger. Expect a big dose of RB Sam Cosmello.

Scouting Meyers: Like Susquehanna, Meyers’ wins have come against opponents a combined 2-13, including 60-0 plastering of Montrose. Rival Hanover Area gave the Mohawks a tussle last Friday and the score was 9-0 going into the fourth. Meyers won 23-6.

What To Expect: A competitive game overshadowed by others on the schedule.

Tunkhannock (2-3) at Towanda (1-4)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Tunkhannock’s Mike Marabell (2-3, 1st year); Towanda’s Craig Dawsey (136-65, 18th year)

Last Meeting: Towanda 42-35 in 2017

All-Time Series: Towanda leads 27-15-1

Scouting Tunkhannock: The Tigers overwhelmed Holy Redeemer 36-0 to win consecutive games for the first time since 2015. The defense has allowed 39 points in the last three games after surrendering 106 in the first two. Progress, albeit minor for now, is being made.

Scouting Towanda: Towanda is off to its worst start since 2015 when the Black Knights finished 2-8. The defense appears better than in 2015, but the offense is about at the same pace. And that’s not good. A four-point loss and one-point loss could be traced to a lack of pop.

What To Expect: Tough game to figure out, so go with the home team.

Valley View (5-0) at Berwick (5-0)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Valley View’s George Howanitz (72-57, 12th year); Berwick’s Frank Sheptock (23-8, 3rd year)

Last Meeting: Valley View 24-17 in 2OT in 2017

All-Time Series: Valley View leads 1-0

Scouting Valley View: The Cougars return to the scene of the crime, where they defeated Berwick in two overtimes for the D2-4A crown in 2017. The suspects have changed a bit. RB Mason Kordish is now the workhorse and RB Janaasah Boone is now the quarterback, but the Cougars remain very dangerous.

Scouting Berwick: The Dawgs were in a bit of a trap game against down-river rival Selinsgrove, but escaped the snare for a 21-7 win. The defense was unbelievable, but issues remain on offense. Berwick barely topped 200 yards total.

What To Expect: Valley View … maybe … in a low-scoring game.

Wallenpaupack (2-3) at Wyoming Valley West (3-2)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Wallenpaupack’s Mark Watson (58-71, 13th year); WVW’s Pat Keating (79-32, 10th year)

Last Meeting: Valley West 35-7 in 2017

All-Time Series: Valley West leads 2-1

Scouting ‘Paupack: A one-point loss to Honesdale and a two-point setback to Hazleton Area has skewed the Buckhorns’ record. RBs Joe Ingulli and Nick Ruggieri have been doing the heavy lifting on offense. The defense has been solid, but doesn’t create turnovers.

Scouting WVW: The Spartans have lost two in a row, albeit to 5-0 opponents. Still, there are concerns with an offense that sputtered in the second half vs. Berwick and again in a 42-6 loss to Dallas. Running room has been limited for RB Carson Canavan.

What To Expect: In a key D2/11-5A game, WVW to prevail.

Wyoming Area (5-0) at Lake-Lehman (4-1)

7 p.m. Friday

The Coaches: Wyoming Area’s Randy Spencer (54-49, 10th year); Lake-Lehman’s Jerry Gilsky (61-35, 9th year)

Last Meeting: Lehman 54-7 in 2013

All-Time Series: Wyoming Area leads 26-7

Scouting Wyoming Area: The Warriors rolled GAR 41-7, but like a week prior had some early missteps that need addressing. They can’t afford a slow start against Lehman. The rush defense has allowed 56.2 yards per game and 1.7 per rush, but Lehman’s offense has plenty of moving parts.

Scouting Lehman: Since allowing 308 yards rushing in a season-opening loss to Western Wayne, the defense has clamped down on opponents. But like some of Wyoming Area’s opponents, we’re not talking offensive juggernauts here. A bigger challenge awaits tonight.

What To Expect: A toss-up, with a slight edge to Wyoming Area.

Hanover Area (1-4) at Holy Redeemer (0-5)

1 p.m. Saturday

The Coaches: Hanover Area’s Mike McCree (7-28, 4th year); Redeemer’s Dwayne Downing (27-48, 8th year)

Last Meeting: Hanover Area 43-7 in 2015

All-Time Series: Hanover Area leads 7-2

Scouting Hanover Area: The Hawkeyes snapped a 16-game losing streak by defeating GAR 21-3 in Week 3. Since then, they’ve scored six points. And before the victory, they scored six points. Obviously, offense is an issue. But so has been a leaky defense.

Scouting Redeemer: Since a 14-12 season-opening loss to Holy Cross, the Royals haven’t scored. They had their best offensive output of 106 yards in last Friday’s 36-0 loss to Tunkhannock, but that’s not going to cut it. Just not enough manpower to be competitive.

What To Expect: Redeemer to fight hard but ultimately fall.

Nanticoke Area (2-3) at Crestwood (1-4)

7 p.m. Saturday

The Coaches: Nanticoke Area’s Ron Bruza (35-52, 9th year); Crestwood’s Greg Myers (81-76, 14th year)

Last Meeting: Crestwood 35-7 in 2017

All-Time Series: Nanticoke Area leads 10-9-1

Scouting Nanticoke Area: The offense was fine the first two weeks, but has disappeared. The Trojans squeaked out a 7-6 in over Coughlin, but have lost 35-7 in consecutive weeks to Wyoming Area and Western Wayne. Something is amiss because it’s the same guys on offense.

Scouting Crestwood: The Comets were too pass-happy, mainly due to injuries, for a few games. They went back to the ground game and got a solid effort from RB Anthony Caporuscio in a 49-26 loss to Williamsport. The defense has had its hands full the past four games.

What To Expect: A happy homecoming game for Crestwood.

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By John Erzar

[email protected]

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar

Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar