Looking at the Explorers
The Explorers offense proved to be just as potent as previous weeks putting up 41 points on a very strong DeMatha defense. Senior Kyle Shurmur threw for 239 yards and 4 touchdowns on 23-30 passing attempts. The triple threat of receivers were extremely beneficial to Shurmur as seniors Charlie Hemcher, Jimmy Herron, and Jordan Meachum continue to rack up Shurmur's yards and touchdowns. A big positive out of this game was running back Jordan Meachum had a couple big runs that continued to drive the Explorers down the field. Though he only ended 52 rushing yards on 19 carries, he added one rushing and one receiving touchdown, and Meachum was also a threat that DeMatha had to keep tabs on throughout the game. This game, look for the Explorers to really not let up against Malvern. In the fourth quarter against DeMatha La Salle seemed to slow down their pace and play it out despite a mounting DeMatha comeback after allowing 19 unanswered points. The Explorers will most likely keep pounding the ball despite the lead.
Despite letting up 39 points, the Explorers defense really showed up when it mattered on the last drive. The slow down late in the game could be attributed to fatigue given by DeMatha's Anthony McFarland who constantly broke big plays and who's motor never turned off. Before the 4th quarter, the Explorers only allowed 20 points to a very solid DeMatha offense. The Explorers also forced two turnovers including a fumble on the opening drive and a tipped pass interception by senior Aidan Kerrigan. Against a Friars offense that will consist of a big passing threat, look for the line to step up in their pressure and the Explorers secondary to really shine. Specifically, look for seniors AJ Grezeszak and Mike Crone to have big games as they cover the backfield. The Explorers defense will look to step up against a threatening Malvern offense.
Looking at the Friars
Malvern Prep's big offensive weapon is senior QB Alex Hornibrook who is committed to Pitt for next year. The Friars bring back a wide range of talent from last year's team which will look to benefit Hornibrook as he continues to improve. The Friars do look to replace leading rusher, receiver, and scorer Troy Gallen as he moved on to Delaware for football. The people they look towards to take over for him are seniors Dymond Wright and Trevor Morris. Over the first three games they combined for 489 receiving yards and 11 Friar touchdowns. On the rushing end of the ball, Malvern will feature dual threats Dymond Wright and junior Rashon Lusane. The two have combined for 377 yards rushing over the first 3 games. A big strength of the offense is that they return four starting linemen from last year's team including Miami (FL) commit Hayden Mahoney. The Explorers should look towards shutting down Hornibrook and getting him out of drives early.
The Friar's defense is not something that should be completely overlooked. The big piece and leader of the defense will be Rutgers commit Trevor Morris at OLB. Malvern will not be a team that will be overbearing on defense after graduating much of their production including John Nassib, Jordan Majors, and Troy Gallen. Senior FS James Keating will be the secondary leader as he returns as a key component from last year's success with three interceptions. After giving up 38 points in their opening game to Roman, the Friars have since only given up 27 points total over their past two games. They don't feature many big names, but a solid defense can be made up of several rotation players and depth. If the Explorers look to succeed against this defense they should look towards exploiting the largely inexperienced secondary and defensive line. It will be crucial to keep a body on Trevor Morris as well.
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