High School Football Games of the Week

by Marc Narducci | Aug 28, 2023
High School Football Games of the Week
This is the first full week of the high school football season after there were plenty of games on Zero Week, last week. Here is a look at some of the South Jersey Games of the Week*.

 

Thursday

Hammonton (1-0) at Cherokee, (1-0), 6 p.m.

Both are coming off impressive opening wins. In Cherokee’s 22-19 defeat of Winslow Township, Quarterback Ryan Bender only attempted four passes, but was a major threat running the ball, with 71 yards and three touchdowns. Cherokee is usually a running team, and the ground game will have to carry the Chiefs, at least in the early going. Hammonton opened with a 35-0 win over St. John Vianney at Ocean City’s Battle at the Beach with junior Kenny Smith scoring all five touchdowns. Smith rushed for 143 yards and four scores and added a 58-yard touchdown reception. This came after he rushed for 1,670 yards and 21 touchdowns on 224 carries as a sophomore.

Friday

West Deptford (0-1) at Woodbury (0-0), 10:30 a.m.

West Deptford is coming off a 19-7 loss to Group 4 Hightstown in Ocean City’s Battle at the Beach. The Eagles lost despite more than doubling the yardage output of Hightstown. Sophomore Brady Cobb scored the Eagles’ lone touchdown on a 16-yard run. West Deptford’s defensive effort was led by end Andrew Tighe, who was voted the Eagles player of the game after recording eight tackles. Woodbury is coming off its first state Group 1 championship, beating Mountain Lakes, 31-7, in the title game. (It was also the first year that public school teams could compete for an NJSIAA state championship). Senior Anthony Reagan Jr. is coming off a season in which he rushed for 1,144 yards and 21 touchdowns. Woodbury won last year’s game against West Deptford 14-7.

Ocean City (1-0) at Mainland (1-0), 6 p.m.

Both teams had impressive opening wins in the Battle at the Beach in Ocean City. Mainland defeated Washington Township, 26-7 while Ocean City defeated long-time Thanksgiving rival Pleasantville, 14-6. Mainland, the defending Central Jersey Group 4 champion, rushed for 288 yards and four touchdowns in the win over Washington Township. Stephen Ordille rushed for 128 yards and a touchdown and Rocco DeBiaso rushed for 123 yards and a score. Ocean City sophomore quarterback Ryan Hendricks came in to start the second half due to an injury and ended up throwing two touchdown passes. Mainland is the defending Central Jersey Group 4 champ. Last year Ocean City won by a 21-20 score over Mainland. This year the Mustangs will be the favorite. 

Saturday

Shawnee (1-0) at Camden Eastside (1-0), noon.

Shawnee, which competes in the loaded WJFL America Division, opened with a 48-21 non-division win over Northern Burlington. Senior Joe Papa threw for 134 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 119 yards and three scores. Camden Eastside opened with a 6-0 victory over Irvington, which entered the game ranked No. 10 in the state by NJ.com. Willy Love, one of the top prospects in South Jersey as a safety, scored the game’s lone touchdown on a 30-yard reception from Nazir Flack. Camden Eastside might have one of the better defenses in South Jersey, but handling the formidable Shawnee offense will be a difficult task. Shawnee beat Eastside, 48-14 last year, but this one should be much closer. 

 *All stats courtesy of NJ.com

 

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Author: Marc Narducci

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