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McGlinn, Badin ready for playoff tuneup

Pat Leonard | Thursday, October 2, 2003

A pair of likely playoff-bound powerhouses square off this evening when McGlinn (3-1) locks horns with Badin (3-1) at 7 p.m. at Riehle West.

Trailing only undefeated Lewis (4-0) in the Gold League, the Shamrocks and Bullfrogs realize the significance of tonight’s match-up – not only can the victor virtually secure the second seed, but it can also set the tone for a successful playoff run.

“Neither of us want to give up that second place spot,” Badin senior captain Jenn Carter said. “It’s going to be a good, tough game.”

Both squads warmed up for the showdown by pounding on winless Howard (0-4).

The Shamrocks shutout the Ducks last Thursday as they rode a quick start and a pair of touchdown tosses by sophomore Bridget Meacham to a 13-0 victory.

Badin made quick work of Howard on Sunday, blowing out the Ducks 33-6. Four different girls recorded touchdowns and the defense chipped in with a couple of interceptions in the route.

With the playoffs looming around the corner, Carter said she believes the Bulldogs are peaking at the right time.

“This is the best that we’ve ever looked,” Carter said. “We’re executing on offense and just getting all the little things done.”

Although the offense is starting to click and the defense has been stingy all season, Carter points to the senior-laden squad’s personnel as its principle strength.

“Our players and coaches are fabulous,” Carter said. “If one of the girls is having a bad day, another will step up.”

Meanwhile, McGlinn tailback Raquel Ferrer feels the team’s effectiveness on both sides of the ball will only continue to improve as the season progresses.

“I think everyone on offense is getting more comfortable with the plays and we’re able to read each other better,” Ferrer said. “The defense came up big last game with a couple of interceptions and hopefully they can come out and do it again.”

Although the fast-approaching playoffs lurk as a potential distraction, Ferrer and the Shamrocks are focused solely on the task at hand.

“For the most part, we haven’t thought about the playoffs yet,” Ferrer said. “We’re just looking to get in the right mental state and come out hard against Badin.”

Pasquerilla East vs. Lewis

Last year’s champs take on one of this year’s strongest teams when Pasquerilla East and Lewis meet this evening at 8 p.m.

The Chicks are coming off a strong shutout victory over the Lions last Thursday, defeating them by a touchdown. PE played Lyons three days later but came up short, losing 13-6.

PE, although the defending champions, has posted a losing record coming into tonight’s game. They lost last year’s quarterback and offensive line to graduation, as well as a great cornerback.

“Most of our key losses were on offense. Our [quarterback] and line are all freshman; they’re very talented, but lack experience. It’s a rebuilding year for us,” said PE captain Laura Wolohan.

The Pyros have struggled in putting together an efficient running offense, and have relied on their defense to stay competitive.

“We’re just trying to get our offense together. The defense has been doing a pretty good job, but they’ve given up a few key plays, and that’s all it takes. We haven’t been making big plays when we need to, that’s why we’re 1-3,” Wolohan said.

Lewis, however, remains undefeated through the first four games of the season. Led by senior Lynne McChrystal, the Chicks have proven strong on both sides of the ball.

“We always look for our defense to be solid, and our defense is the jump start for our offense,” said junior linebacker Sheila Dawes.

Their low scoring game last week could have partly resulted from the players’ lack of experience handling the ball in low temperatures. Dawes said that practices this week have been for “keeping fresh and trying to get ready for cold weather games.”

The Pyros hope to stay strong on defense throughout the game, while putting together some offense drives to get on the scoreboard. Although off to a rocky start, PE hopes to set the Chicks ablaze tonight and begin a successful turnaround in their season. The Chicks, however, plan on coming out strong and continuing their undefeated streak into the playoffs.

Lyons vs. Howard

Lyons (1-3) looks for their second consecutive win of the 2003 season against Howard (0-4) Thursday night.

The Lions’ 13-6 victory over struggling defending champion Pasquerilla East has led to a boost in team confidence.

“Catching the ball on Sunday – that was a key thing,” said captain Lauren White. “We played together as a team, and the offense really stepped it up.”

The Lyons defense has been impressive so far this season. Although their offense has struggled to put points on the board, the defense has managed to hold most opponents to relatively few points per game.

“Our defense had four or five key interceptions against PE,” White said.

They also held Lewis’ powerful offense to a mere six points earlier in the season.

The duo to watch will be quarterback Roxy Travino and receiver Meghan Regan, who have been a threat to score every game.

“They do a good job working together and getting the job done,” said White.

Defensively, the Lions plan to stay tight in their typical man-to-man formation. On the other side of the ball, they hope to get more plays together, varying the passing and running game to keep scoring.

“We’d really like to make it [to the playoffs],” White said.

Howard is looking for its first win of the season after a disappointing 33-6 loss to the Bullfrogs of Badin. The Ducks are in the midst of a difficult rebuilding season, but are looking to improve under captain Shannon Trevino’s guidance.

The cold weather may play a role in this evening’s game, with the forecast dropping to the low forties. The game will take place at Riehle West at 9 p.m.