SOL Football Forecast (9-2-21)

Scott Huff recaps all of last week’s SOL action and picks the winners for this week in his first weekly column.


Football Forecast


By Scott Huff


Mercy, mercy, mercy…


The Suburban One League National Conference had a less than impressive start to the 2021 scholastic football season.


The SOLN played five cross-over games under the bright Friday Night Lights with schools outside the league - and lost all five.  Three of those losses came by way of the mercy-rule as familiar SOL powers were handled with ease by strong programs out of the SOL.


The mercy rule setbacks came as Academy Park [Delaware Valley League] routed Pennsbury (42-0), Archbishop Wood [Philadelphia Catholic League] sailed by Neshaminy (37-0), and Coatesville [Ches-Mont League] rolled past Central Bucks West (35-14).


Pennridge and Central Bucks East also lost to strong teams outside the SOL.  The Rams lost to Downingtown East [Ches-Mont League] by a 14-7 score, and the Patriots were unsuccessful in their season opener in a 34-29 loss to Ridley [Central League].


North Penn, Central Bucks South, and Abington all collected victories  in opening games.  However, all three SOLN teams collected wins over SOL teams from outside the conference.  The Knights defeated Souderton, the Titans edged Plymouth Whitemarsh, and the Ghosts were victorious over Cheltenham.


The Suburban One League National Conference opens conference play this week with a full slate of four games.


The Suburban One League Continental Conference was the lone SOL conference to have a winning opening week going 4-3.


Upper Dublin, Quakertown, Bensalem, and Council Rock North all collected wins, while Souderton, Council Rock South, and Truman all lost opening night games.  Hatboro-Horsham did not play.


The Suburban One League Continental Conference opens conference play this week with a full slate of four games.


The Suburban One League American Conference finished a collective 2-5 after results from opening night were recorded in the record books. 


Upper Moreland and Springfield were the winners, while Plymouth Whitemarsh, Cheltenham, William Tennent, Wissahickon, and New Hope Solebury were all on the losing end of the final score. 


The Suburban One American Conference plays an entire slate of non-league games this week.




“If you build it, he (they) will come.” – voice of Shoeless Joe Jackson in the movie Field of Dreams


North Penn opened the gates to a beautifully renovated Crawford Stadium with a resounding 42-27 victory over the defending PIAA 6A District One champion Souderton.


And the fans did come from both neighboring communities, and they came in droves to open the 2021 PIAA scholastic football season.


The Knights were not invited to the four-team District One postseason last year after an early season loss to Neshaminy. 


The pandemic shortened season did not allow North Penn to play either of the two SOL teams that eventually played in that district title game – Souderton and Pennridge.  Both the Big Red [SOL Continental Conference] and the Rams [SOL National Conference] had finished the “regular” season unbeaten in conference play.


But that won’t be the case this year as the Knights – after the non-conference victory over the district champion Big Red - will host district runner-up Pennridge on September 24th in a conference contest.


North Penn with the convincing victory over Souderton may just have given notice to the SOL - and the entire District One for that matter - as one the teams to beat this season.  Souderton is clearly not a bad football team, and the Knights have something to prove this year.


 And by the way, the movie Field of Dreams was released in 1989.  And by the way, that was the last time, 1989, that Souderton had beaten North Penn in football – when a brand-new car cost $12,000 and gas was $1.12 a gallon.


And that, my friend, was a very long time ago.



Rivalry Week


The 2021 Suburban One League football season is getting everyone back to the new ‘normal’, but what isn’t normal in recent years has been the juggling of the schedule to accommodate postseason play.


The traditional Thanksgiving rivalries, with some exceptions, have gone from view.  Neighborhood rivalries have been shifted to either the regular season, or the non-conference schedule.


Last week a couple of those old-time Thanksgiving Day rivalries were played as opening games in the 2021 season.


Abington defeated Cheltenham 19-7 to open the season.  The often called ‘Turkey Bowl’ will go in the neighborhood win column for the Ghosts – a rivalry that goes back over 100 years.


Upper Dublin defeated Wissahickon 43-0 to open the season.  The often called “Backyard Brawl” will go in the neighborhood win column for the Flying Cardinals.


Sadly, the Turkey Day high school football flavor is almost gone in the SOL. But thanks to both Pennridge and Quakertown that wonderful taste is still very much alive on Thanksgiving morning.


And the beat goes on…



SOL National Conference
September 3, 2021

Abington Ghosts (1-0) @ North Penn Knights (1-0)
Last Week:

Abington defeated Cheltenham 19-7 in a non-conference opener.  John Dzielawa completed 16 passes for 133 yards that included a TD pass to Danny Moynihan.  Zahmir Lee rushed for a game-high 133 yards on 16 carries and scored a touchdown.
North Penn defeated defending District One champion Souderton 42-27 in a non-conference opener. Khalani Eaton rushed for a game-high 238 yards on 27 carries and scored 4 touchdowns.  Levi Carroll scored on the final play of the first half on a 34-yard TD pass from Ryan Zeltt and ran the second half kickoff back 97 yards for a score.
North Penn Knights 35 – Abington Ghosts 24

Central Bucks South (1-0) @ Central Bucks West (0-1)
Last Week:

Central Bucks South
opened its season with a 35-27 non-conference victory over Plymouth Whitemarsh.  Patrick Maerz completed 9 passes for 195 yards and a touchdown pass to Tom Donnelly.  Cole Maholtz rushed 20 times for 64 yards and scored 3 touchdowns.
Central Bucks West lost its season opener in a 35-14 non-conference loss to Coatesville.  Donte Mancini rushed 18 times for 107 yards and scored a touchdown for the Bucks.
Central Bucks South Titans 28 – Central Bucks West Bucks 21

Pennsbury Falcons (0-1) @ Pennridge Rams (0-1)
Last Week:

trailed 27-0 at the half and lost a 42-0 non-league contest to host Academy Park.

Pennridge led 7-0 early when Adam Mossbrook returned the opening kickoff 91 yards for a touchdown.  The Rams, however, managed just 55 yards of total offense.  The defense allowed only 175 yards of total offense to the Cougar offense.
Pennridge Rams 17 – Pennsbury Falcons 14

Central Bucks East (0-1) @ Neshaminy Redskins (0-1)
Last Week:

Central Bucks East
lost its non-league opener to Ridley, 34-29.  Pat Keller had a terrific game for the Patriots throwing for 160 yards and 3 touchdowns to 3 different receivers – Quinn Moody, Matt LaBouliere, and Ethan Shine.  Shine ran for 134 yards also scored a rushing touchdown.
Neshaminy had a tough non-league outing as the Redskins were mercy-ruled by PCL power Archbishop Wood, 37-0.  Neshaminy managed only 105 total yards of offense against the Vikings and allowed 288 yards to the Wood offense.
Neshaminy Redskins 24 – Central Bucks East Patriots 21


SOL Continental Conference

September 3, 2021

Council Rock South Hawks (0-1) @ Upper Dublin Cardinals (1-0)
Last Week:

Council Rock South generated very little offense in its 21-7 non-conference loss to Upper Moreland.  The Golden Hawks had 136 yards of total offense.  Thomas Woloshyn scored for CR South on a 1-yard run.
Upper Dublin had an offensive explosion as the Flying Cardinals soared by Wissahickon 43-0 in a non-conference opener.  Colin O’Sullivan threw for 254 and 3 touchdowns to spark the offense.  Noah Lee (41 yds), Griffin Penebene (29), and Chris Kohlbrenner (38) all latched on to TD passes for the winners.
Upper Dublin Flying Cardinals 38 – Council Rock South Hawks 7

Souderton Big Red (0-1) @ Harry S Truman Tigers (0-1)
Last Week:

lost its non-conference opener to North Penn by a score of 42-27.  The Big Red led 17-14 at the end of the first half.  Nate Hageman completed 10 passes for 119 yards and 2 touchdowns.  Shaun Purvey scored on a 70-yard interception return.  SAHS kicked a pair of field goals – a 31 yarder by Ty Quintois and a 28-yarder by Ryan Zuk.
Harry S Truman opened its 2021 football season with a 15-9 non-league loss to Chichester.  The Tigers led 9-7 at the close of the first half but failed to score in the second half.
Souderton Big Red 42 – Harry S Truman Tigers 13

Hatboro-Horsham Hatters (0-0) @ Bensalem Owls (1-0)
Last Week:

did not play.
Bensalem opened the 2021 season with a thrilling 28-20 overtime non-league win over Norristown.  Matthew Saunders scored the game winner on a 1-yard run in the OT.  Zach Roberts scored on a 70-yard interception return, while Josiah Leonard rushed for 171 yards on just 9 carries and scored on runs of 43 & 53 yards.
Bensalem Owls 27 – Hatboro-Horsham Hatters 14


Council Rock North Indians (1-0) @ Quakertown Panthers (1-0)
Last Week:

Council Rock North was impressive in its season opener defeating New Hope Solebury 30-0 in a non-conference game.  Gavin Papp scored 4 touchdowns for Rock North on touchdown runs of 13, 12, 5, and 6 yards.  Sawyer Koza gave CRN a 3-0 lead early with a field goal.
Quakertown was impressive as the Panthers clawed host Southern Lehigh, 42-7.  Tyler Woodman scored on a 99-yard kickoff return and also scored 2 touchdowns on runs.  Will Steich fired a touchdown pass to Zach Fondl and also scored a rushing touchdown for the winners.
Quakertown Panthers 35 – Council Rock North Indians 14


SOL American Conference
September 2, 2021

Cheltenham Panthers (0-1) @ Frankford Pioneers (1-0)
Last Week:

Cheltenham opened its season with a tough 19-7 non-conference loss to Abington.  The game was tied 7-7 at the half.  Quarterback TJ Taylor completed 11 passes for 147 yards and a touchdown.  Jamal Banks caught 5 passes that included a 41-yard TD pass reception.
Frankford opened its 2021 season with a resounding 50-0 victory over George Washington.  It was the non-conference opener for both Philadelphia based teams.
Cheltenham Panthers 21 – Frankford Pioneers 20

September 3, 2021

Plymouth Whitemarsh Colonials (0-1) @ Methacton Warriors (1-0)
Last Week:

Plymouth Whitemarsh lost its non-conference opener to Central Bucks South, 35-27.  Greg Feinberg rushed for 97 yards and scored on touchdown runs of 64 & 15 yards.  Aiden O’Brien scored on a 41-yard run, while Chris McLaughlin scored on an 11-yard run.

Methacton defeated Harriton 38-8 in its opener under first year head coach Brian Kennedy.
Plymouth Whitemarsh Colonials 28 – Methacton Warriors 21

Archbishop Ryan Raiders (0-1) @ Upper Moreland Bears (1-0)
Last Week:

Archbishop Ryan
opened its 2021 season with a 21-3 non-conference loss to Bishop Shanahan.
Upper Moreland opened its season with a 21-7 non-conference victory over Counci Rock South.  Byron Hopkins completed 11 passes for 173 yards and 2 touchdowns – one to Ryan Olexa of 14 yards – and one to Stephen Broderick of 12 yards.  Cameryn Jackson carried 20 times for 93 yards and scored on a 5-yard run.
Upper Moreland Golden Bears 28 – Archbishop Carroll Raiders 14

Academy Park Knights (1-0) @ William Tennent Panthers (0-1)
Last Week:

Academy Park
opened its 2021 season with a stunning 42-0 non-conference victory over Pennsbury.
William Tennent opened its season with a 29-7 non-league loss to Great Valley.  The Panthers led 7-6 at the close of the first half.  Brandon Steir scored the lone WT touchdown on a 12-yard run.
Academy Park Knights 45 – William Tennent Panthers 7


Academy of the New Church Lions (0-0) @ Springfield Spartans (1-0)
Last Week:

Academy of the New Church did not play.
Springfield opened its season with a 35-7 non-league victory over Schuykill Valley.  Sophomore Ryan Gibbons carried 19 times for 103 yards and scored 3 touchdowns.  Ben Cooney completed 7 passes for 153 yards that included a 41-yard touchdown pass to Dylan McKensie.

Springfield Spartans 35 – Academy of the New Church Lions 14


Wissahickon Trojans (0-1) @ Owen J Roberts Wildcats (0-1)
Last Week:

Wissahickon opened its season with a 43-0 non-conference loss to Upper Dublin.  Kyle Lehman was both the leading rusher and the leading receiver for the Trojans.
Owen J Roberts opened its 2021 season with a 17-14 non-league loss to Conestoga.

Owen J Roberts Wildcats 27 – Wissahickon Trojans 14


September 4, 2021

New Hope Solebury Lions (0-1) @ John Paul II Panthers (1-0)
Last Week:

New Hope Solebury opened its season with a 30-0 non-conference loss to Council Rock North.
John Paul II opened its season with a 43-14 non-league victory over Archbishop Carroll.
John Paul II Panthers 45 – New Hope Solebury Lions 7