Sports

Archbishop Wood Begins Its Real Season

High School Football Frenzy
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Top 10
Week of Nov. 14, 2011
1. Archbishop Wood (Record: 10-1. Previous Week: 1. Weeks Rated: 12.)
2. La Salle (Record: 10-1. Previous Week: 2. Weeks Rated: 12.)
3. Council Rock South (Record: 10-1. Previous Week: 3. Weeks Rated: 12.)
4. North Penn (Record: 9-2. Previous Week: NR. Weeks Rated: 1.)
5. Garnet Valley (Record: 10-1. Previous Week: 8. Weeks Rated: 3.)
6. Malvern Prep (Record: 9-1. Previous Week: 6. Weeks Rated: 11.)
7. Neshaminy (Record: 8-3. Previous Week: NR. Weeks Rated: 1.)
8. Pennsbury (Record: 8-3. Previous Week: NR. Weeks Rated: 1.)
9. Central Bucks South (Record: 8-3. Previous Week: NR. Weeks Rated: 1.)
10. Coatesville (Record: 9-2. Previous Week: NR. Weeks Rated: 1.)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)– You can almost excuse Archbishop Wood for being bored. The Vikings entered this season as the crème de la crème of Southeastern Pennsylvania and have done nothing to disprove it, winning 10-straight games after a season-opening loss. Wood captured its fourth-straight Philadelphia Catholic League Class AAA title last weekend and are going for its fourth-straight District 12 (city championship) Class AAA championship, against Dobbins Tech on Saturday at 12-noon at Northeast High School.

Wood is 10-1 and has scored more points than any Class AAAA team in the area, with 490 total points, averaging 44.5 points a game. Wood has three shutouts and surrendered 88 points, giving up 11 points a game. The Vikings are beating teams by an average of 33.5 points a game. Over its last six games, Wood has scored 296 points and is averaging 49.3 points a game, outscoring opponents by 44.3.

So you can excuse the Vikings if there is a whining yawn or two as they begin what is the real part of their season. What drives them is what happened when Wood reached last year’s PIAA Class AAA state semifinals, losing to eventual Class AAA state champion Allentown Central Catholic and star quarterback Brendan Nosovitch, 49-27.

The loss wiped out an incredible year for Wood, which left the field dejected—and determined not to end its season again like that.

“I think it’s why we play 100 mile an hour all the time,” said Colin Thompson, the Vikings’ senior tight end/defensive lineman who’s going to Florida on a football scholarship. “I remember walking off that field last year and how depressing that was. It’s something I think we’re all thinking about this year, it’s something we don’t want to go through again. It is motivating. We don’t talk too much about the state championship. We’ve been patient, taking it a game at a time.”

Wood may not be truly tested until the state finals. Central Valley and Bishop McDevitt (Harrisburg), LeSean McCoy’s alma mater, could emerge from the western part of the state. On this side of the state, there is defending champ Allentown Central Catholic again, though the Vikings have had a difficult time stopping teams this year. Allentown is on a four-game winning streak and has played better defense, but it includes shutout victories over two winless teams.

“We need to keep the same attitude we’ve had since the beginning of the season,” said Wood offensive lineman Brandon Arcidiacono, who’s headed to Rutgers. “We have to take it a step at a time, but we all know what the goal is and what the expectations are.”

The Vikings know they can’t catapult themselves there without winning in the playoffs.

Game of the Week
Neshaminy (8-3) at North Penn (9-2), Friday 7 p.m.
It’s been a funky year in the District 1 Class AAAA playoffs. Only two of the top eight seeds survived the first round, No. 1 seed Council Rock South and No. 5 seed Garnet Valley. Otherwise, every lower seed won, including two traditional powers, Neshaminy and North Penn, which are getting better and better. North Penn is on a nine-game winning streak and the Redskins are a four-game run, after suffering a hiccup in the middle of the season, when they lost an uncharacteristic three of four games.

Reported by: Joseph Santoliquito

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