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October 26, 2012TweetFollow @achiappazzi
Each week, PaPreps will highlight some of the more intriguing match-ups of the weekend, from interesting locations to milestone moments to premium contenders going at it, we'll try and grab the best potential games of the weekend.
Later Friday night and again on Saturday, we'll post scores from around the state as they come across the Associated Press wire.
Week 9 Games of the Week
Coatesville at Downingtown West
Buzz: Coatesville is one of the few teams to push Downingtown East to the brink this season. Barring a major upset, East is all but locked into one of the top two seeds. Coatesville, though, is battling with Friday night's opponent in the giant rumble that is the rest of the District 1 bracket. Both Coatesville and Downingtown West need another marquee win, as they face below average opponents in the final regular season game next week. This is their last chance to make a move up the District 1 ladder and maybe, just maybe, get a home game in Round 1.
Perkiomen Valley at Pottsgrove
Buzz: There isn't just a Pioneer Athletic Conference title game. No, as if this game didn't need enough juice, it's also wielding a significant impact on the playoff chances for Perkiomen Valley. Though this is a league game, Perkiomen Valley is a Class AAAA team while Pottsgrove is Class AAA. Pottsgrove all but has the No. 1 seed in District 1 locked up in 3A. Even with a loss, it's doubtful Interboro or Academy Park picks up enough points to slip by. But for Perkiomen Valley, a win over an 8 or 9 win Pottsgrove would be a major boost and very well might push PV into a Top 8 slot in the 4A playoffs.
Wilson West Lawn at Penn Manor
Buzz: Speaking of games with major playoff implications, the de facto Lancaster-Lebanon title game at Penn Manor this week could have an enormous ripple effect on District 3. Wilson is currently No. 1 in the district's power points in Class AAAA, while Penn Manor - which actually has a better record (8-0 to 7-1) - is No. 3. In between is Central Dauphin. Needless to say, Friday night's winner - especially if it's Wilson - can move very close to locking up the top seed. Not that it's a guarantee, but with both teams possessing stingy defenses, very few teams will want to roll into West Lawn or Millersville in a playoff environment.
Beaver at Aliquippa
Buzz: After Aliquippa's dismantling of Beaver Falls, there's still quite a bit of doubt as to whether anyone in the WPIAL can beat Aliquippa in 2012. The Quips will get their last regular season test against Beaver in a rivalry game that's taken on more meaning in recent years. Beaver has become a legitimate Class AA contender, and this year both teams are 8-0. Behind running back Darian Bradley, who is a bit hobbled but may try to play, Beaver has methodically grounded teams down. Aliquippa is explosive, but they also have surprising strength. Beaver's defense can be exploited. Whether the Quips do that or not will determine the game.
West Mifflin at Thomas Jefferson
Buzz: The buzz every year in the WPIAL in Class AAA is always on the Parkway Conference. But West Mifflin and Thomas Jefferson are both undefeated (unlike anyone in the Parkway), and the winner likely will end up as the top seed in the playoffs. The two teams also have two of the more underrated stars in the region. West Mifflin RB James Wheeler has surpassed 1,500 yards and has 19 TDs. Thomas Jefferson QB Joe Carroll has thrown 31 touchdowns to just 2 interceptions.
Brockway at Port Allegany
Buzz: These two teams played three times last year, once in the regular season, once for the league title, and once in the district playoffs. It could happen again this year, as they're already destined for a league title game next week. It's a little bizarre to have two teams playing each other back-to-back, but that's the way the schedule fell in District 9. This week might be a little vanilla, but there will also be a spotlight on Port Allegany QB Matt Bodamer. He's second on the all-time PIAA passing list, 312 yards behind former Brockway QB Derek Buganza. It seems all but certain he'll break it against Buganza's former team, either this week or next week.
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