Football: New Top 25


By Phil Anastasia

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Here's the first live Top 25 of the South Jersey football season (preaseason ranking in parentheses):

1. Timber Creek (1) 1-0

Senior quarterback Dan Williams is 38-for-48 for 540 yards and 8 TDs in his last two games. The Chargers ran a lot of no-huddle spread in a 34-7 win over Camden Catholic, creating a lot of opportunities for WRS Adonis Jennings and Cameron Chambers. That duo will be tough to contain this season. The Chargers' D, which got a big boost from emerging junior DE Deron Sherif, gets a big challenge this week from Tom Flacco and Eastern. Next: at No. 9 Eastern (1-0) Friday at 7.

2. Williamstown (2) 1-0

The Braves might have set a school record for points in a 67-6 win over CH East Thursday. It definitely was the most since 2004, and the program didn't have many teams before 2004 that were capable of scoring more than 67 in a game. Williasmtown has won 14 in a row. Last loss? To WT after squandering a 17-0 in a SJ 4 playoff game on 11/11/11/. Big test Friday at Shawnee, which is coming off a confidence-boosting win over Kingsway. In 2012, Williamstown beat Shawnee 39-0 and that performance catapulted the Braves through the best season in school history. Next: At No. 10 Shawnee (1-0) Friday at 7.

3. Holy Spirit (3) 1-0

The Spartans jumped out of the gate with a 30-0 over then-No. 13 Hammonton. That's impressive because Hammonton is a good football team this season. Senior RB Taalib Gerald scored 3 TDs in the first half and the Holy Spirit D pitched another shutout. Huge game this week against rival St. Joe. Next: Home vs. No. 4 St. Joe (1-0) Friday at 7/

4. St. Joseph (4) 1-0

The Wildcats sure didn't look like a young team that needs to find its footing in the opener. They hammered a decent Absegami team by 48-6. Sophomore twins Salaam and Alaam Horne burst on the scene in a big way. Some folks in Hammonton think the Horne twins could end up being two of the best players ever to play for SJ. They gave a million miles to go but they are off to a good start. This Friday will be a great challenge for SJ's younger kids, as Holy Spirit is a seasoned, senior-heavy team. Next: At No. 3 Holy Spirit (1-0) Friday at 7.

5. Cherokee (5) 1-0

Senior QB Trevor Osler was 12-for-16 for 141 yards and a TD and senior RB Matt Stickney carried six times for 45 yards in a 34-7 win over Lenape. That's an impressive margin of victory in a rivalry that usually features 1- and 2-score games. The Chiefs' seniors are on a mission this season. They also probably remember losing to Triton last season, a game that cost them a playoff berth. Next: at Triton (1-0) Friday at 7.

6. West Deptford (6) 1-0

It was 62-0 at halftime of a 76-0 win over Gateway Friday night. What is coach Clyde Folsom supposed to do? Tell his quarterback to fall on the football? Wouldn't that be more insulting to Gateway? It was a tough situation and he's looking at another one this week against Lindenwold, which lost 48-7 to Collingswood on Friday. WD Senior Devon Bates carried three times against Gateway and wasn't tackled: 139 yard and 3 TDs.

7. Millville (8) 1-0

Good opener for the Thunderbolts, who scored a 20-6 win over a tough and talented AC team. Junior RB Rob Ennis ran for two TDs. Next: Home vs. Mainland (1-0) Friday at 7.

8. Rancocas Valley (9) 1-0

Junior Shaun Bradley returned a kickoff 86 yards for a TD in a 55-21 win over WWPN. That's a strong start for an RV team that looks poised to make some noise this season. The Red Devils have an early bye in a scheduling quirk and won't take the field for 15 days. Next: at Notre Dame (1-0) Sept. 27 at 7.

9. Eastern (10) 1-0

Senior QB Tom Flacco passed for 191 yards and 2 TDs and ran for 131 yards and 3 TDs in a 63-19 victory over Washington Township. Big game for the Vikings this week at No. 1 Timber Creek. Can the OL protect Flacco against that TC's pass rush? Can the Eastern defense figure out a way to contain that TC passing game? Next: at No. 1 Timber Creek (1-0) Friday at 7.

10. Shawnee (14) 1-0

Anthony DiOrio (20), Jake Parola (20) and Michael Welsh (21) combined for 61 carries in a 25-19 win over then-No. 12 Kingsway. DiOrio (pictured) ran for 183 yards, and Parola and Welsh combined for 157 and 2 TDs. A confidence-boosting win for the Renegades, who will need to be sharp when Williamstown comes to Medford this weekend. Next: Home vs. No. 2 Williamstown (1-0) Friday at 7.

11. Penns Grove (11) 1-0

Dahkim Seals ran for 127 and 2 TDs and the Red Devils rallied for a 14-12 win over rival Glassboro on Saturday. Those Group 1 powers might meet again in the playoffs. PG has won 14 in a row. Like RV, Penns Grove has a schedule quirk that results in a Week 2 bye. The Red Devils are off until Sept. 28. Next: at GC (1-0) Sept. 28 at 1.

12. Haddonfield (16) 1-0

The Bulldogs got strong work from junior RB Mike DeFeo and rolled past Audubon 47-6 in the first game on their new turf field. The second should be a lot tougher as Woodbury comes to town this weekend. Next: Home vs. No. 25 Woodbury (1-0) Friday at 7.

13. Camden (23) 1-0

Huge victory for the Panthers as they travelled to Franklinville and beat defending SJ 3 champion Delsea 38-29. Key for coach Dwayne Savage and his assistants is to keep the team from too high after such a big win. Next: at No. 22 Camden Catholic (0-1) Friday at 7.

14. Delsea (7) 0-1

For the third year in a row, the Crusaders dropped an early game they were "supposed" to win -- on paper, anyway. Tough test this week against No. 17 Moorestown, which handed Delsea its only loss last season. Next: Home vs. No. 17 Moorestown (1-0) Friday at 7.

15. Kingsway (12) 0-1

The Dragons started last season with a loss to Shawnee and ended up in the SJ 4 title game. They could do it again. Next: Home vs. Deptford (0-1) Friday at 7.

16. Hammonton (13) 0-1

The Blue Devils need to put that 30-0 loss to Holy Spirit out of their minds. Next: at Oakcfrest (0-1) Friday at 7.

17. Moorestown (22) 1-0

Led by senior LB Shayne Lawless and soph DT Niles Turner, Moorestown D looked strong in 7-0 win over Seneca. A dry field should work wonders for senior QB Tyreek Robinson. But an angry Delsea team awaits in Franklinville. Next: at No. 14 Delsea (0-1) Friday at 7.

18. St. Augustine (17) 1-0

Junior RB Lamont Harris with a big debut in 48-14 win over Middle Twp. Next: Home vs. LCM (0-1) Friday at 7.

19. NBC (18) 1-0

Senior Kenyatta Greene ran for 162 and 3 TDs in 35-0 win over Princeton. Next: At Cinnaminson (0-1) Friday at 7.

20. Burlington Twp. (19) 1-0

Senior all-purpose Jahseim Rover's fake-punt run for first down sparked 23-6 win over Willingboro. Next: at Holy Cross (1-0) Friday at 7.

21. PVI (20) 0-0
The Eagles open the season Monday night at Cherry Hill West in a game postponed by weather on Thursday night. Keep an eye on junior WR Irvin Charles.

22. Camden Catholic (21) 0-1

Sophomores Tyree Rodgers and Benny Walls are playmakers for the Irish. Next: Home vs. No. 13 Camden (1-0) Friday at 7.

23. Absegami (15) 0-1

The Braves need to regroup after tough opener against St. Joe. Next: Home vs. Middle Twp. (0-1) Friday at 7.

24. Bridgeton (24) 1-0

If the Bulldogs are the No. 1 threat to SAP in the CAL National, they'll prove it against Cedar Creek. Next: Home vs. Cedar Creek (1-0) Friday at 2:30.

25. Woodbury (25) 1-0

The Thundering Herd gave new coach Al Mailahn a great gift in a 41-0 win over Haddon Heights in the opener. Mailahn is a teacher and senior class advisor at HH. Next: at No. 12 Haddonfield (1-0) Friday at 7.

Under consideration (listed alphabetically): EHT (1-0), Sterling (1-0), Triton (1-0).

-- Contact Phil Anastasia at Follow @PhilAnastasia on Twitter.

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