A CLOSER LOOK: NO. 11 POTTSGROVE AT NO. 18 SPRING-FORD
While Perkiomen Valley may still have a say in things, the Pioneer Athletic Conference title likely will be decided when Pottsgrove clashes with Spring-Ford Friday night in Royersford.
The Falcons arrive for the 7 o'clock matchup at Coach McNelly Stadium with a 4-0 overall record and 3-0 mark in PAC-10 play; the host Rams, who pinned a 14-7 defeat on Perkiomen Valley (3-1, 2-1) in Week 3, are 3-1 and 2-0.
Last year, en route to going 9-0 and claiming top league honors, Pottsgrove blasted Spring-Ford, 26-0.
In recent weeks, the Rams have been led by explosive tailback Jarred Jones. The senior sat out last year's game with a broken wrist.
In three appearances this season, Jones has carried 59 times for 522 yards and eight touchdowns. He netted 243 yards and four scores, including second-half jaunts of 80 and 75 yards, in last week's 41-14 rout of Boyertown.
Spring-Ford suffered a big blow in Week 3 against Perkiomen Valley, losing fleet-footed handyman Tate Carter to a probable season-ending knee injury.
For the run-dominated Falcons, halfback Marquis Barefield has rushed 55 times for 458 yards and five TDs. Also in the mix are quarterback Riley Michaels and fullback Sene Polamalu.
Pottsgrove's first-team defense, which has yielded only one touchdown, is headed by end Patrick Finn, nose guard Anthony Pond, linebacker Jeff Adams, and cornerbacks Barefield and Michael Fowler.
While allowing only three scores since a 37-21 loss to Whitehall, Spring-Ford's defense has been keyed by linemen Mason Romano and Robby Varner, and linebackers Andy Lovre-Smith and Connor Murphy.
Barefield has scored a total of eight TDs: five rushing, one interception return, one fumble return, and one punt return.
Pottsgrove has won 12 out of the last 14 meetings. Spring-Ford broke through with a 49-35 triumph in 2011.
This season, the Falcons have outscored their four foes by 185-41; the Rams have won their last three games by 89-21.
Pick: Pottsgrove, with another solid effort on the defensive side, grinds out a 26-14 win.