The second week of Catholic League Red Division football action features an intriguing contest between Archbishop Wood and Archbishop Ryan.
Wood, the defending PIAA Class 5A state titlist, is 3-2 after last week's 42-0 league romp over Roman Catholic. First-year coach Kyle Adkins and the Vikings have won three straight since losing to McDonogh (Md.) and Bergen Catholic (N.J.).
High-flying Ryan is 6-0 and has outscored foes, 248-114. The Raiders opened league play last week with a 38-20 defeat of Northeast Philly neighbor Father Judge.
Wood looks to knock Ryan from the ranks of the unbeaten when the squads clash at 3:30 p.m. Saturday at George Washington.
Wood's Jake Ross has performed well at quarterback since replacing injured starter Jack Colyar late in the season opener. The converted wide receiver has connected on 30 of 47 passes for 442 yards and five touchdowns.
"He moves around well, throws the ball into tight windows," Ryan coach Frank McArdle said of the 6-foot-2, 190-pound senior.
Wood's other key offensive contributors are running backs Tom Santiago (76 carries for 478 yards, five scores) and Leroy Pendleton. Backfield mate Chris Blackstone has missed the last two games because of an injury.
Wood regularly gives opponents fits on the line of scrimmage. The surge up front is headed by center Luke Stengel (6-4, 250), guard Brett Gross (6-0, 220), and Army-bound tackle Connor Bishop (6-3, 260).
"They're a really active and physical group," McArdle said.
A Ryan offense averaging 40.2 points is spurred by dual-threat QB Jahlil Sanders, multipurpose threat Tyreek Chappell, halfback Julian Jones, and wide receiver Kyron Long.
Sanders fired TD passes of 30 and 27 yards against Judge. The 6-1, 195-pound senior ran for fourth-quarter scores of 46 and 9 yards.
"He can hurt you in a bunch of ways," Adkins said. "That's the challenge of playing Ryan, that they're anything but one-dimensional."
Bishop McDevitt (5-1) vs. No. 20 West Catholic (5-1), at Widener, 8 p.m. West is focused is on slowing halfback Jon-Luke Peaker (122 carries for 830 yards, six TDs). Pick: West, 19-17.
No. 25 Quakertown (5-1) at Upper Dublin (4-1), 7 p.m. The visiting Panthers have a strong one-two punch in QB Brad Bryan and halfback Mike Terra. Pick: Quakertown, 24-23.
Radnor (5-1) at No. 24 Springfield (Delco) (5-1), 7 p.m. Radnor's Matt Cohen carried 133 times for 863 yards and eight scores. Pick: Springfield, 14-7.
No. 22 Harry S Truman (5-1) at Pennsbury (3-3), 7 p.m. Can the host Falcons beat the improved Tigers for their fourth straight win? Pick: Truman, 28-24.
No. 9 Wood (3-2) vs. No. 15 Ryan (6-0) at George Washington, 3:30 p.m. Ryan must hold its own on the line of scrimmage to have a shot at staying perfect. Pick: Wood, 27-17.