Oakland Mills (3-3) at Howard (5-1)
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Outlook: This game will be won or lost by Howard's defense, which has given up 43 points, fewest by a county team. The Lions are proficient at creating turnovers and cashing in on them. They created six last week against Glenelg in a 22-6 victory. Howard has 10 interceptions -- three apiece for Brian Bush, Carlton Fox and Dalawn Parrish. Oakland Mills runs a wing-T, one that gave Howard trouble earlier this season against Liberty. To be successful, Howard's defense must not get caught up in play faking. But it also must pressure Oakland Mills QB Chad Fekel, who had a career day last week against Centennial, completing 11 of 16 passes for 177 yards and four touchdowns. Oakland Mills will try to confuse Howard with misdirection and counter plays and hope Howard's defense is overly aggressive. The Scorpions want to maintain ball control to keep Howard's big-play offense off the field. Oakland Mills burned Centennial badly last week with weak-side passes. RB Jake Daft leads the Scorpions with 503 yards and four touchdowns on 60 carries. RB Guy Smith leads Howard with 575 yards and 10 touchdowns on 66 carries. The Lions like to run options and sweeps. Last season Howard beat Oakland Mills for the first time in 10 years, 14-7. Both teams are 2-1 in league play. Howard's John Quinn coached Oakland Mills coach Ken Hovet when Hovet played at Oakland Mills in the late 1970s.
Hammond (4-2) at Mount Hebron (2-4)
Time: 2 p.m.
Outlook: The Golden Bears are coming off of a 16-14 win over Wilde Lake, a team they had not beaten since 1986. Defense is Hammond's strength. DT Justin Lavis was sensational against Wilde Lake with 15 tackles, five sacks, four blocked passes and a fumble recovery. Jim Jackson, John White and Jim Weston are other defensive stalwarts. Hammond runs an I, but also has a shotgun formation that it used successfully last week on its winning drive in the last two minutes. Tim Spruill is the QB in the shotgun. White leads Hammond in rushing with 426 yards on 49 carries. Bears PK Neil Arnold, who kicked a winning 35-yard field goal last week, also beat Good Counsel with a field goal, 3-0. The Bears have struggled offensively, scoring just 52 points, many of which were created by the defense. They are 2-1 in league play. Mount Hebron has been outscored, 126-13, while losing its past three games. The Vikings are led offensively by RB Charles Kosh, who has 418 yards and four touchdowns on 48 carries. Leonard Frieson has caught 11 passes for 180 yards and two touchdowns.
Centennial (3-3) at Glenelg (4-2)
Time: 2 p.m.
Outlook: Each of these teams is reeling from two straight losses. This is Glenelg's homecoming game, so the Gladiators will have extra incentive. They are led offensively by RB James McKenney who has 704 yards and six touchdowns on 125 carries. QB Sean Lookingbill has completed 32 of 67 passes for 410 yards and five touchdowns. Centennial must stop McKenney and create a pass rush on Lookingbill. Glenelg made six turnovers last week against Howard, and Centennial needs to improve its record of creating turnovers. The Eagles have created only six all season, but have committed only five. RB Don Culbreth leads the Eagles with 610 yards and seven touchdowns on 95 carries. He gains rugged yards up the middle out of Centennial's power-I. RB Rob Hauff has 255 yards on 42 carries. Starting Centennial QB Brian Dowell missed last week's game with a dislocated shoulder and is a doubtful starter this week. Sophomore QB John Webster filled in well.
Atholton (5-1) at Wilde Lake (3-3)
Time: 2 p.m.
Outlook: Despite its superior record, Atholton enters as the underdog. Wilde Lake should be fired up after last week's 16-14 loss to Hammond. Atholton is coming off of a 35-13 win over Mount Hebron. The Raiders must establish a running game to keep Wilde Lake's blitzing defense honest. Atholton RB Carlando Love has 458 yards and six touchdowns on 70 carries. If Raiders QB Jason Albert gets time, he can operate the run-and-shoot successfully. He is 57 of 107 for 716 yards and nine touchdowns. WR Matt Treese has 20 catches for 273 yards and five touchdowns, and WR Tony Stewart has 18 catches for 229 yards and three touchdowns. Wilde Lake QB Seth Willingham led his team to two touchdowns in the last seven minutes against Hammond last week. He's completed 40 of 73 for 702 yards and seven touchdowns. He likes to throw to his backs. Green has seven catches for 189 yards and two touchdowns, and Anderson has eight catches for 88 yards. But Willingham also has completed passes to WR Tarkese McDonald five times for 94 yards and three touchdowns and to WR Brian Bassett nine times for 81 yards. TE Jermaine Sutton has eight catches for 165 yards. RB Mike Green has 412 yards and four touchdowns on 86 carries. RB Allan Anderson has 226 yards and three touchdowns on 53 carries out of Wilde Lake's wishbone.