Men’s Interhall Football: Playoff berths, seeds on the line this weekend
Joe Meixell | Friday, October 6, 2006
Alumni and Dillon have opposite intentions but the same motivation for Sunday’s 1 p.m. game at Riehle Fields.
The Dawgs, who at 1-1 are in the middle of a playoff run, are playing for a possible three-seed. The 0-3 Big Red are playing to avoid a winless season.
Both teams, however, know exactly how important the game is.
“We’re always motivated,” Alumni captain Richard Dancy said. “The rivalry exists no matter what the records are. Last year we were 0-2-1, and we beat them in the last game of the season.”
Although Dillon is winless, Alumni has prepared for the game like any other.
“Dillon has a talented quarterback,” Dancy said. “He’s explosive and fast. We’ve worked this week to be able to contain a mobile quarterback.”
Alumni also needs to get its offense back on track after failing to score in its last game, an 18-0 loss to Morrissey two weeks ago.
“We got a different front from Morrissey than we were expecting,” Dancy said. “We went back over the basics. We worked with the line and backs on remembering assignments.”
Dillon will have an extra momentum boost heading into the game. Every year, former residents of Dillon come back and practice with the team for a day.
That includes Joe “Crackhead” Parker – a nickname referring to his affinity for breaking plates over his head during the annual Dillon Pep Rally.
Figueredo stressed the importance of these practices for the team’s motivation and morale.
“It’s Alumni,” said Figueredo, referring to the importance of the game. “It’ll be a fun one.”
Zahm vs. Siegfried
Last year’s reigning champ Zahm is still looking for its first win heading into Week 4 of the season, meeting up with the Siegfried Ramblers at 1 p.m. on Riehle West field Sunday.
But a playoff-ready Siegfried squad isn’t ready to let Zahm get that win any time soon.
The Ramblers (2-1) have looked strong this season, posting early wins over St. Ed’s and Knott but dropping their most recent game to the Green Wave.
Zahm (0-2) hasn’t started the season well. The Rabid Bats have yet to score a point.
Zahm captain and quarterback Sean Wieland expressed the team’s new attitude toward the game against Siegfried.
“Obviously it’s important for us to win,” he said. “Our playoff status is kind of in jeopardy so we’re just going to go out there, have some fun and play some football.”
Knott vs. Carroll
Sunday’s 2 p.m. Knott-Carroll matchup on Riehle West field will have a significant impact on the playoff picture of the Blue League.
An undefeated Carroll squad looks to stay on top and earn the top seed for October’s playoffs, while Knott, currently tied with the Sorin Otters for the last playoff spot, desperately needs to win this game just to get in.
The Vermin (2-0) hope to continue their winning streak by utilizing a brilliant passing game that generated 146 yards of offense and three touchdowns against the Stedsmen.
The Juggerknotts (1-1-1) are coming off of a solid defensive performance that resulted in a 6-6 tie with Sorin. That game could have settled the playoff situation in the Blue League, but the tie made things much more complicated. Knott now faces a must-win situation in order to secure the fourth and final postseason slot.
“I think everyone on our team is aware of how important this game is to us,” Knott captain Matt Crosson said. “Our season will be decided on this game so we’re pretty excited for it.”
The game will be decided between Carroll’s offense and Knott’s defense, both teams’ respective strengths. On the opposite side of the ball, Carroll’s passing game has been potent, capitalizing on the height of their receivers, especially Paul Tassinari.
“Our strategy is just to keep everything in the middle, slow down their passing game and keep their offense off the field,” Crosson said.
Stanford vs. Keenan
In the thick of a playoff race, a tough, stingy defense is a very potent weapon. Keenan will wield that weapon once again, this time against Stanford, at 2 p.m. Sunday on Riehle Fields.
The 2-0 Knights have allowed just eight points all season. They shut out O’Neill 10-0 last week and forced three interceptions en route to their victory.
“Defense is always our number one focus,” captain Matt Gibson said. “We win games on the defensive side of the ball.”
Keenan needs a win Sunday to secure its spot atop the Gold League. If Morrissey, also 2-0, beats Keough, both Keenan and Morrissey will be undefeated for their showdown next Thursday, a game that could potentially determine which team will be the number one seed in the playoffs.”
Stanford will be no pushover. A comeback victory two weeks ago against Dillon demonstrated their ability not only to put points up but also to force turnovers and make defensive stops.