Here are five must-see individual matchups you’ll want to watch when L-L League football teams hit the field for Week 10 games:
Manheim Central at Solanco: Safe to say the Golden Mules will stick with their trusty triple-option attack in this clash, which means the Barons — who are angling for their 24th Section 2 victory in a row, and the outright section championship — must be in run-stuffer mode from the get-go. Keep an eye on a pair of Central gap-plugger D-tackles in the trenches: Troy Kolk (51 tackles, 2.5 sacks) and Tyler Fahnestock (24 tackles, 2.5 sacks) must help curtail Solanco’s rushing frenzy, which has amassed a league-leading 3,020 yards. … And this: Mules’ FB Nick Yannutz (1,365 yards, 14 TDs) is the league’s leading rusher heading into Week 10. Central has the third-ranked defense in Section 2 (314 yards a game against), and the Barons have allowed 1,431 rushing yards, third-fewest in the section.
Northern Lebanon at Donegal: The Vikings have aired it out to the tune of 1,670 passing yards from QB Ethan Borcky, who has sure-handed wideouts Nate Leedy-Reidel (36-703, 6 TDs) and Alex Folmer (29-340, 2 TDs) at his disposal. That means a busy night for Indians’ safeties Joe Fox (86 tackles, 3 INT, 2 pass breakups, 3 fumble recoveries) and Mason Ober (48 tackles, 1 INT, 2 pass breakups, 1 fumble recovery), who have to be ready over the top to help out in coverage. … And this: Northern Lebanon has rushed for a league-low 308 yards, so the Vikings certainly won’t be shy about going up top; Donegal is fifth in Section 3 in total team defense (312 yards a game against), and the Indians have yielded 1,089 passing yards — third-fewest in the section.
Lebanon at Annville-Cleona: Alex Rufe continues to shine on the flanks for the Cedars, with 44 receptions for 751 yards in the last five games, and a league-leading 65 catches (for 943 yards, 7 TDs) heading into this intriguing Lebanon County backyard scrap. A-C DB Dylan Scheer (18 tackles, 2 INT, 4 pass breakups) has been a solid cover-corner for the Dutchmen, so keep an eye on him to keep tabs on Rufe. … And this: A-C has surrendered 1,728 passing yards, most among Section 3 outfits.
Columbia at Elco: The Crimson Tide must slow down the Raiders’ rugged Veer rushing attack, with QB Braden Bohannon (1,259 yards, 15 TDs), RB Erik Williams (497 yards, 3 TDs) and RB Luke Williams (465 yards, 5 TDs) all doing damage toting the rock. Last week in a 62-14 win over Northern Lebanon, Columbia D-tackle Matt Gambler returned a blocked punt for a TD, and DB Jvon Collazo had his second pick-6 interception return for a score this season for the Tide, which will need another spirited defensive effort against Elco, which locks up a D3-4A playoff bid with a win. … And this: Elco has 2,428 rushing yards, second-most in Section 3, and Columbia has yielded 1,809 rushing yards, second-most in the section.
Hempfield at Manheim Township: The Blue Streaks are angling for a 10-0 regular-season ride — and their first undefeated regular-season campaign since 1977 — against their bitter rivals, and they must curtail Black Knights’ scatback Tanner Hess (895 rushing yards, 13 TDs) and QB Colin Peters, who passed for 267 yards and two scores in a 30-12 win over Penn Manor last week. One of Township’s top D weapons has been LB Tyler Kurtz (40 tackles, 5 for losses, 2.5 sacks), who has helped the Streaks amass 69 hits for losses, 23 sacks and nine QB hurries. … And this: Township is No. 1 in the L-L League in total team defense (131 yards a game against), rushing defense (418 yards against), scoring defense (55 points allowed; the next closest is Warwick, with 95 points surrendered), total team offense (415 yards a game) and points scored (421).