A CLOSER LOOK: NO. 17 ABINGTON AT NO. 23 C.R. NORTH
Friday night's marquee Suburban One League National Conference opener pits Abington against Council Rock North.
The Ghosts and Indians, both 3-0 and featuring quick-strike offenses, meet at 7 p.m. at Walt Snyder Stadium in Newtown.
Abington, ranked No. 17 in Southeastern Pennsylvania by The Inquirer and propelled by senior tailback Craig Reynolds, has won by a combined score of 115-51.
No. 23 C.R. North, which is spurred by the dynamic pass-catch duo of Brandon McIlwain and Dejuan Martin, has outscored foes by 107-46.
Here is a closer look at the contest:
Coaches. Tim Sorber is 90-67 (.573) in 14 seasons at Abington; Adam Collachi, in his fourth year at C.R. North, is 14-19 (.424).
Last year. In Week 4, the host Ghosts, with the aid of four turnovers, turned back the Indians, 19-17.
On a roll. C.R. North is 3-0 for the first time since 2006, when it went 10-1 and 7-0 in the old SOL Continental Conference.
Catalyst. Reynolds, a 5-foot-10, 190-pound senior, has carried 35 times for 334 yards and seven touchdowns. He also has seven receptions for 104 yards.
Rising underclassman. The 6-1, 200-pound McIlwain, a sophomore and second-year starter, has completed 21 of 42 passes for 377 yards and five scores.
In a hurry. Abington's no-huddle, spread attack is directed by senior Anthony Lee, who has hit on 25 of 42 throws for 473 yards and three TDs.
Sidelined. The Indians lost senior running back and defensive lineman Tyler Callender to a foot injury in a 15-13 win at Northeast in Week 2.
Supporting role. Paired with Reynolds in the backfield, junior Tyler Schreiner has rushed 19 times for 182 yards and two scores.
Speedster. Martin, a fleet-footed senior receiver and kick returner, has scored five TDs. The 5-9, 160-pounder, also a threat as a rusher, is a native of Scarborough, Ontario.
Leading the way. Abington's offensive line is anchored by guard Jake Clark (5-9, 260) tackle Andrew Sykes (6-4, 315), and center Colin Maxey (6-0, 235).
Stalwarts. The Indians' defense is led by end Connor Guzy (five sacks), middle linebacker James Closser, cornerback Seth Leuz, and safety Mitch Maisel (two interceptions).
Analysis. The difference in a battle of unbeatens is the Ghosts' size advantage up front. That spells continued success for Reynolds and at least four scores.
Pick. Abington, 30-14.