Across the Times area football landscape, congratulations are in order for multiple teams.
Two teams won their respective division Friday night–both of them in the Big Central Conference–while two West Jersey Football League squads locked up at least a share of their division title, with a chance to win it outright in the coming weeks.
Firstly, all of the teams won their titles in style, combining to win over the weekend 166-58. Both South Hunterdon and Montgomery won division titles outright Friday night. The Cougars, who continue to keep the No. 1 spot in the area rankings, beat North Hunterdon 49-6. Montgomery will be hosting at least one game in the playoffs, most likely two, and possibly all three games in the North 4 section.
In South 1, both Florence and South Hunterdon will be at home in the first round, and the Eagles were the other Big Central squad to clinch the division. South Hunterdon beat Dunellen 40-22, and have a chance over the next two weeks to get to 8-1 prior to the playoffs.
The other South 1 team that might host multiple rounds is Florence, and the Flashes routed Palmyra 45-8 to stay unbeaten and win at least a piece of the WJFL Classic Division crown. Florence can win it outright on Friday, Oct, 20 with a win over Holy Cross.
The fourth team to pick up a title is Allentown. The Redbirds had one of the more impressive victories of the season, beating West Windsor-Plainsboro 32-21 to earn a piece of the Valley Division title. Allentown can win it outright with a win over Highstown on Oct. 20.
“It’s huge, it’s been so long and we had not been doing so well the past (few) seasons,” Allentown running back Sean McCaffery, who had a pair of touchdowns in the win over WW-P, said. “This year we just flipped a switch. Our junior class is great, we all have passion. Our senior class all want it so bad and we’re going for it.”
AREA GAME OF THE WEEK
Allentown comes out in second half and wins title over WW-P
There have not been too many better games–and more enjoyable to watch–in the area than this one Friday night. The two teams, who both are off to great starts in 2023, went into the break tied at 14-14. But Luke Wiedau, and a strong defensive effort, won it for the Redbirds 32-21.
“I don’t think I’ve ever coached a more cerebral kid than Luke Wiedau,” Allentown Head Coach Andrew Lachenmayer said. “He just wants to be really, really good. He works his butt off to get there and everything we have done over the last couple years is to put him and this team in the right situation and it is paying off this year.”
TIMES AREA FOOTBALL RESULTS
Friday, Oct. 6
Nottingham 27, Ewing 0
Florence 45, Palmyra 8
Robbinsville 42, Lawrence 14
Steinert 40, Highstown 12
Burlington City 46, Bordentown 7
New Egypt 12, Pemberton 7
Paul VI 35, Northern Burlington 3
South Hunterdon 40, Dunellen 22
Hopewell Valley 49, Trenton 0
Allentown 32, WW-P (South) 21
Montgomery 49, North Hunterdon 6
Saturday, Oct. 7
Notre Dame 42, Hamilton West 0
Cherry Hill East 34, Princeton 14
Hill (PA) 34, Peddie 33
Lawrenceville 13, Penn Charter (PA) 7
Pennington 42, Mastery Charter 8
Hun 41, Blair 0
TIMES AREA UPCOMING SCHEDULE
Friday, Oct. 13
Bordentown at Lawrence, 6
Delran at Notre Dame, 6
Allentown at New Egypt, 6:30
Ewing at Robbinsville, 7
Hightstown at Hopewell Valley, 7
WW-P at Princeton, 7
South Hunterdon at Dayton, 7
Scotch Plains-Fanwood at Montgomery, 7
Saturday, Oct. 14
Willingboro at Nottingham, 12
Pennington at ANC (PA), 1
Hun at Hill (PA), 2
Peddie at Lawrenceville, 2
Rancocas Valley at Northern Burlington, 2
TIMES AREA OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Anthony Venettone, RB, South Hunterdon, Sr.: The Eagles area soaring once again, and won a division title thanks to the legs of Venettone Friday night. he has 19 carries for 260 yards and two scores, and also threw for a 17-yard score, to pile up over 300 yards of offense in a 40-22 victory.
AREA DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Edward Cooper, LB, South Hunterdon, Jr.: The Eagles have a very good defense, and Cooper–along with Garrett Swayhoover–had a monster night to clinch the division. Cooper had 22 tackles, and also helped South Hunterdon come out after halftime and secure its win over Dunellen, limiting the hosts to just one 65-yard burst while the Eagles built up a 33-14 lead.
AREA TEAM OF THE WEEK
Allentown: It had been a long time since the Redbirds last got a chance to hang a banner. Allentown won a first title since 2017, the year after the Redbirds won the division and a sectional title. This team is going to be very dangerous in the playoffs if it is healthy.
TIMES AREA GREAT EIGHT – NJSIAA TEAMS
2-Notre Dame (7-0)
5-West Windsor-Plainsboro (5-2)
6-South Hunterdon (6-1)
7-Hopewell Valley (5-1)
8-Northern Burlington (4-3)
TIMES AREA PREP RANKINGS
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