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Red Raiders Sports

Whippets-Red Raiders matchup highlights slate

Posted Friday, October 29, 2010 by Peter DiGiovanni, Daily Local News

Week 9 is upon us and the playoff push and league championships quest is hotter than ever. West Chester Rustin and Downingtown East have to keep winning to take the Ches-Mont League titles, while Malvern Prep takes on Haverford School as the Friars go for the Inter-Academic League title.

But possibly the biggest game of the week is Coatesville invading Kottmeyer Stadium to take on Downingtown West.

Coatesville is in good shape for the playoffs but they need a win over the Whippets to assure themselves a berth in the District 1 Class AAAA dance. If the Whippets defeat the Red Raiders tonight and then beat Bishop Shanahan next week, and get some help, they may also be in the postseason.

Coatesville is coming off an impressive 10-0 win over West Chester Henderson but Red Raiders boss Matt Ortega is very wary of the challenge the Whippets present.

"Their offense is hitting on all cylinders now," Ortega said. "They found a quarterback after the third game and they have only lost once since then. Offensively they present a lot of problems because they use a lot of different formations.

"They try to out-formation you and that makes them a very tough team to prepare for. They are like us in that they are not huge, but they are fast and physical. They are very tough.

"For us, I think our whole defense is playing well. Guys like Kyle Kerrick, Ryan Valentino, Dave Warren, Devyn Gallimore and Marquis Weathington have really played well for us. And, last week against Henderson, Phil Boyd really came on. Offensively, I think Manny Stocker is making good decisions, but we did not run block that well against Henderson. We are going to be ready for a good test against Downingtown."

Pick: Coatesville 21, Downingtown West 14.

Malvern Prep at Haverford School

The Friars have not allowed a touchdown in two weeks and are getting big plays from Joe Nilan and Sean Mooney. Look for Malvern to ground out another Inter-Ac win.

Pick: Malvern Prep 28, Haverford School 7.

Bishop Shanahan at Great Valley

A win for Shanahan pretty much assures the Eagles of their first-ever Class AAA playoff berth. Great Valley will not stop the versatile Eagle offense led by quarterback Ryan Egolf and running back Keegan Lawton, who rushed for over 100 yards last week against West Chester East.

Pick: Bishop Shanahan 30, Great Valley 13.

Lower Merion at Conestoga

The Pioneers are pretty much out of the playoff race but, as always, head coach John Vogan's team will play hard until the end of the season. Blair Brooks may gain 200 yards on the Aces.

Pick: Conestoga 42, Lower Merion 7.

Downingtown East at West Chester East

Things seem to be coming together for the Cougars as they march to a Ches-Mont title and a top four berth in the Class AAAA playoffs. The Vikings only scored three points in their loss to Bishop Shanahan last week. For the Cougars' defense, Jeff Kiely, Kenny Ambrogi and arguably the best defensive back in the Ches-Mont, Brandon Robles, lead the way.

Pick: Downingtown East 35, West Chester East 7.

Kennett at Oxford

Two very improved clubs meet here. I think Oxford has more offense as the Hornets can both run and pass.

Pick: Oxford 24, Kennett 17.

West Chester Rustin at Sun Valley

Sun Valley will not stop the Golden Knights' march to the Ches-Mont title and a possible top eight berth in the Class AAAA playoffs. Will Andrew Fithian go the entire regular season without throwing an interception?

Pick: West Chester Rustin 45, Sun Valley 7.

Avon Grove at W.C. Henderson

Henderson needs a win badly to keep its flickering playoff hopes alive. Linebacker T.J. White is having a great season for the Warriors, who should be able to score on a Red Devil defense that has been giving up a lot of points.

Pick: West Chester Henderson 34, Avon Grove 20.

Octorara at Unionville

Octorara needs to win at least one of its last two games to make the Class AAA playoffs. But Unionville is too tough for the Braves and Rustin awaits the Braves next week.

Pick: Unionville 24, Octorara 14.

To contact staff writer Peter DiGiovanni, e-mail cpn11716@comcast.net.

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