South Jersey Football Rankings: Woodrow Wilson rockets up the Top 10
The Tigers rise to No. 3 after an imposing victory over then-No. 2 Shawnee.
It was a statement win. It also was a catapult.
Woodrow Wilson’s 48-0 victory over Shawnee underscored the Tigers’ status as one of the most explosive teams in the state. It also rocketed the Orange and Black back into the upper levels of the rankings to the No. 3 spot in South Jersey.
Here’s the new Top 10, with last week’s ranking in parentheses:
1. Williamstown (1) 6-0: The Braves ground out a 24-7 win over an improved Cherokee squad in another West Jersey Football League American Division battle. It marked the fifth time in six games this season, and the 16th time in 19 games since the start of last season, that the Braves’ defense held the opponent to a touchdown or less. Senior defensive lineman Aaron Lewis, a Michigan recruit, continues to lead the way for the Braves. Williamstown is home vs. Washington Township on Friday.
2. Lenape (3) 4-1: The bye week was good to the Indians, allowing players to nurse some bumps and bruises and allowing the team to rise to the second spot in the rankings. Lenape has been getting some great work from senior linebacker Clyde Washington, a Purdue recruit. Lenape returns to action Friday at Camden Catholic.
3. Woodrow Wilson (9) 4-1: That might have been the Tigers’ best all-around game in five seasons under coach Preston Brown. Sophomore quarterback Devin Kargman threw five touchdown passes. Senior Fadil Diggs, a Texas A&M recruit, caught 12 passes for 172 yards and three scores. Running back Muheem McCargo, a Temple recruit, gashed the Renegades’ defense with key gains and also caught a touchdown pass. The defense pitched its first shutout since October 2017, a stretch of 24 games. Woodrow Wilson visits Delsea on Friday.
4. St. Augustine (4) 3-3: For the second week in a row, transfers Carnell Davis and Kanye Udoh made a major impact for the Hermits. Davis scored on a pick-six and a reception, and Udoh ran for 164 yards in a 34-0 victory over Rancocas Valley. St. Augustine has won two in a row by a combined score of 39-3 in advance of Friday night’s visit to old rival Holy Spirit.
5. St. Joseph (5) 5-1: Jada Byers scored two touchdowns to become the all-time leading scorer among Cape-Atlantic League players in a 19-11 win over Vineland. Byers has 542 career points, breaking the mark of 532 set by Ocean City’s Kevin Sinclair in 1996. St. Joseph visits No. 6 West Deptford on Friday night in a highly anticipated rematch of last year’s game between two of South Jersey’s top programs. The Wildcats were in turmoil last season and reeling from the two-game suspension of veteran coach Paul Sacco when the Eagles arrived at Bill Bendig Field and registered a 51-0 victory. It’s probably not a stretch to say the Wildcats have circled the rematch on the calendar.
6. West Deptford (6) 5-0: The Eagles took care of business against archrival Haddonfield, building a 28-0 lead and taking a 28-14 victory in a result that likely will secure them the WJFL Colonial Division title. Gavin Shields found the end zone on a run and also on a scoop-and-score of a fumble return while quarterback Aaron Graeber, a junior whose emergence has taken the offense to another level, scored on a pair of runs. Friday night’s game with St. Joseph has major significance for the Eagles, too. Beating the Wildcats two years in a row would speak volumes about the strength of the program under second-year coach Jason Morrell.
7. Penns Grove (7) 6-0: The Red Devils scored 30 or more for the 14th time since the start of last season in a 34-6 road win at Linganore, Md., a six-time state champion. Coach John Emel’s team has won 19 games in a row. On paper, the Red Devils will be heavily favored to enter the South Jersey Group 1 tournament with a 22-game winning streak. Penns Grove hosts Schalick on Saturday.
8. Highland (8) 5-1: The Tartans recorded a 35-12 victory over Moorestown, avoiding a possible letdown after an emotional victory the week before over rival Timber Creek. Highland has won five in a row since a season-opening loss to St. Joseph Aug. 31 at Rutgers. The Tartans, who host dangerous Burlington Township on Friday, are in prime position to earn a high seed in the Group 4 tournament.
9. Shawnee (2) 5-1: it’s a tricky thing to figure how far to drop a top team after a lopsided loss. Shawnee has some impressive wins, including an overtime triumph over St. Augustine. The Renegades, no strangers to battling through adversity after last season, have a tough stretch ahead, including a road game Friday at North Jersey Group 5 power Union City, followed by an Oct. 25 visit from No. 1 Williamstown. The game at Union City should be memorable since the Soaring Eagles have one of the most interesting home fields in the country, sitting on top of the school, surrounded by a high fence.
10. Camden (10) 4-1: The Panthers were off this week. Behind senior linebacker Tirek Austin-Cave, Camden has three shutouts in its first five games. Austin-Cave, a Miami recruit, has 65 tackles, an average of 13 per game. Camden visits rival Pennsauken on Friday night at Vince McAneney Stadium.
Under consideration (listed alphabetically): Cedar Creek (4-2), Delran (5-1), Haddonfield (4-2), Mainland (6-0), Pleasantville (4-1), Timber Creek (4-2), Willingboro (5-1).