Centennial (3-4) at Hammond (5-2)
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Outlook: This matchup features an outstanding defense against one of the best offenses around. Hammond's defense recorded its third shutout last week, trouncing Mount Hebron, 42-0. Centennial's power-I offense is tough to stop, however. The Eagles have scored three touchdowns in three of their past four games. LB Jimmy Jackson (97 tackles), DT Justin Lavis (11 sacks), NG Jim Weston (57 tackles) and S Irving Conwell (six interceptions) are some of the key Bears on defense. They must stop RB Don Culbreth (121 carries, 711 yards) from running off tackle and prevent the Eagles from playing ball control. Eagles QB Brian Dowell should start again after missing two games with a shoulder injury. Offensively, Hammond must improve. Except for last week, the Bears have averaged 10 points per game. RB John White's 521 yards on 59 carries lead the team. RB Mike Sargent has 319 yards on 33 carries. Bears QB Jeff Price has completed 24 passes in 63 attempts for 326 yards and three touchdowns. Sargent has 12 catches for 183 yards and two touchdowns. Turnovers have hurt Hammond this season. The Bears have made 32, including 20 on fumbles. Centennial has lost three straight games and should be hungry for a win, but must cut down on defensive mistakes. Hammond, in a three-way tie for first place with Wilde Lake and Howard, must win its last three games to make the playoffs and clinch a share of the county title, which it has never won.
Oakland Mills (3-4) at Wilde Lake (4-3)
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Outlook: Oakland Mills has lost four straight to the Wildecats and is coming off of a demoralizing 28-6 loss to Howard. The Scorpions must maintain ball control and focus on stopping Wilde Lake RB/DE Mike Green, who is a strong pass rusher. Green has 530 yards on 104 carries and has caught 10 passes for 234 yards. He has scored nine touchdowns. Howard had tremendous success in the air against Oakland Mills, and the Wildecats also may go to the air. QB Seth Willingham has completed 48 of 90 passes for 829 yards and nine touchdowns. He likes to throw to his backs -- Green and Alan Anderson (10 catches, 128 yards) -- but also targets WR Jermaine Sutton (nine catches, 169 yards), WR Brian Bassett (nine catches, 81 yards) and WR Tarkese McDonald (seven catches, 127 yards). Anderson has 269 yards on 58 carries. The Wildecats need a win to remain tied for first place. Oakland Mills runs a wing-T that features RB Jake Daft, who has 575 yards and four touchdowns. QB Chad Fekel has completed 47 of 86 passes for 586 yards and seven touchdowns. Most of Oakland Mills' passing is from bootlegs and roll-outs, which should counter Wilde Lake's strong pass rush.
Atholton (5-2) at Howard (6-1)
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Outlook: Howard is on a roll, having won three straight after losing its league opener to Centennial. Atholton is reeling from a 49-6 loss to Wilde Lake in which the Raiders made five turnovers. Howard excels at creating turnovers. It has a 3-to-1 turnover ratio. Howard's defense has allowed 49 points, fewest by a county team. Howard's offense succeeded at controlling the ball last week. QB Dalawn Parrish had a banner day, completing 11 of 16 for 133 yards. For the season, he is 33-for-67 for 360 yards and five touchdowns. RB Guy Smith has rushed 82 times for 639 yards and 11 touchdowns. Defensively, Atholton must stop Smith. Offensively, it must establish a running game. RB Carlando Love has 485 yards and seven touchdowns on 84 carries. QB Jason Albert has completed 59 of 117 passes for 781 yards and nine touchdowns from Atholton's run-and-shoot formation. WR Matt Treese is the Raiders' most dangerous receiver with 23 catches for 357 yards and five touchdowns. WR Tony Stewart has 18 catches for 229 yards and three touchdowns. Howard must win to remain in first and keep its playoff hopes alive.
Glenelg (5-2) at Mount Hebron (2-5)
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Outlook: The Gladiators are coming off a come-from-behind homecoming victory over Centennial in which QB Sean Lookingbill completed seven of 17 passes for 264 yards and three second-half touchdowns, and RB James McKenney rushed 22 times for 123 yards. Glenelg gained 461 yards on offense. But Gladiators coach Ed Ashwell says his team is making too many mistakes and says it never seems to play well against Mount Hebron. Glenelg's special teams allowed Centennial to return the opening kickoff for a touchdown. A bad snap on a punt set up Centennial's second touchdown. And the Gladiators drew 65 yards in penalties in the second half against the Eagles. Mount Hebron has lost all four league games and been outscored, 168-31, in those games. The Vikings will be hard-pressed to stop Lookingbill, who has completed 39 of 84 passes for 674 yards and seven touchdowns, or McKenney who leads the county with 830 yards and seven touchdowns on 143 carries, or Mike Deming who has 331 yards on 52 carries.