Southeastern PA Top 10

Week of Sept. 20, 2013

1. Coatesville (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 4.)

2. Archbishop Wood (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 4.)

3. Imhotep Charter (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 4.)

4. St. Joseph’s Prep (Record: 2-1. Weeks Rated: 4.)

5. Neshaminy (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 4.)

6. Pennridge (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 4.)

7. La Salle (Record: 2-1. Weeks Rated: 4.)

8. Council Rock North (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 3.)

9. Episcopal Academy (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 2.)

10. Archbishop Ryan (Record: 3-0. Weeks Rated: 1.)

By Joseph Santoliquito

Philadelphia, PA (CBS) — Each week they load up the box trying to stuff Mike Class and every week opposing defenses have trouble stopping him.

Class, arguably the best tailback in Southeastern Pennsylvania, is coming off a five-carry, 130-yard, three-touchdown performance—in one half—during a 49-20 victory over Council Rock South last week. In that game, Class broke the all-time Pennridge career rushing record (4,230 yards rushing on 567 carries, averaging 7.5 yards per carry).

As a junior last year, the 5-10, 185-pound Class rushed for a single-season, school-record 2,420 yards and 32 touchdowns in 13 games, averaging more than eight yards a carry. Penn State is among the various suitors showing him attention.

What makes Class so impressive this season is everyone knows what the Rams are going to do. The Rams know it and still do it. Opposing teams can’t help it—nor can stop him. He’s explosive, fast and when the time arises, he can lower his shoulder and run through a defender.

But the concern for Class is to stay healthy, and to get the Rams deep into the PIAA District 1 Class AAAA playoffs. The Rams reached the district semifinals last year, before losing to Spring-Ford, 35-24.

Class and his teammates will be facing a test themselves in Academy Park tailback Jerry Lanier and the undefeated Knights.

Games of the week

Abington at Council Rock North, Friday, 7 PM. Both Suburban One League National Conference teams are 3-0. Both have high-powered offenses. Abington coach Tim Sorber’s team has outscored its opponents 115-41 in three games, while Council Rock North quarterback Brandon McIlwain has led the Indians to 107 points in three games, giving up 46. Council Rock North enters this early-season pivotal game off a short week, beating Hatboro-Horsham on Monday.

Prediction: Council Rock North 36, Abington 33

Pennridge at Academy Park, Friday, 7 PM. Forget that both teams are 3-0. This is a great matchup between two of the best running backs in the area. Class faces Academy Park’s Jerry Lanier, who has rushed for 618 yards over three games, after ripping through Sun Valley for 180 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries last week in a 37-0 Knights’ victory. Expect the stands to be filled with scouts in Sharon Hill, Delaware County Friday night.

Prediction: Pennridge 37, Academy Park 30

Joseph Santoliquito is a contributing sports blogger for CBS Philly.

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