Keenan looks to extend streak against O'Neill
By KEVIN BERCHOU
The Keenan Knights come into this Sunday's game with the O'Neill Angry Mob looking to extend their winning streak, now spanning three seasons, to 17 games.
It appears as though Keenan is again one of the league's strongest teams, as it has knocked off its first two opponents by a combined score of 34-0.
Though the Knights boast a well-rounded squad, their strength clearly lies in their dominant defense. Led by senior defensive lineman Doug Kraft the Keenan defense has been merciless, wreaking havoc in its first two outings.
Kraft has led the charge, applying consistent pressure on opposing passers. Keenan has been most successful in forcing turnovers, having pressured archrival Stanford into coughing up the ball seven times. A secondary led by player/coach Dong Min has come up with a multitude of big plays, backing up the extraordinary efforts of the defensive front. Min returned an interception for a score to emphatically end the Stanford game.
"We'll go with what's been working on defense," captain Herb Giorgio said of his team's preparation for Sunday's game. "Obviously the defense is the strength of our team. They've played very well."
Keenan will look to its improving offense to put more points on the board. Freshman quarterback Billy Ellsworth has been impressive in his first two starts, throwing for a touchdown against both Morissey and Stanford. Tailback Nick Costanzo has fueled the running game, adding an additional touchdown in both of his team's two previous games.
Giorgio has been concerned with his offense's tendency to turn the ball over.
"We need to cut down on the mental errors. Thus far, we have turned the ball way too many times," the Keenan captain said.
The O'Neill Angry Mob enters the contest still looking for its first win, having fallen to Keough last week.
It's a match-up that on paper appears to favor Keenan heavily, but the Knights know they cannot afford to take the Angry Mob lightly.
"We definitely need to be cautious of a letdown," Giorgio said.
Alumni vs. Morissey
The Alumni Dawgs enter Sunday's action still riding an emotional high after knocking off south-quad neighbor the Dillon Big Red in week one.
Alumni will look to move to 2-0 with a victory over Morissey, while the men of the Manor enter play still looking to get in the win column.
The Dawgs will go with a 4-4 scheme on a defense that is anchored by outside linebacker and captain Pat Paquette. Alumni is particularly strong up the middle with senior defensive Ryan Jocham and junior middle linebacker Mitch Karan looking to snuff out the Morissey rushing attack.
On the offensive side of the ball, Alumni will borrow a page from Michigan coach Lloyd Carr's play book and rotate two quarterbacks. Sophomores Matt Anton Giovanni and Nick Altos will continue to split time under center.
Morissey, having dropped its first two decisions will look to right the ship and score a victory. Manor is solid on defense but will be looking to improve offensively.
"We'll be looking to put more points on the board," Morissey captain Matt Wahlberg said. "Our offense needs to improve."
Dillon vs. Stanford
Both Dillon and Stanford enter this Sunday's tilt sporting identical 1-1 records.
The Griffins of Stanford will look to rebound from last week's disappointing loss to the Keenan Knights with a big victory over the Big Red.
Stanford's strong defensive line consists of John Dickas, Dave Hunt and Shamus Rohn — all of whom are solid against both the run and the pass.
The Griffins' offense will continue to feature a strong running game, thanks to a dominant backfield made up of tailbacks Chris Heid and Curt Roberts, as well as fullback J.C. Perez.
The Big Red were successful in bouncing back from a week one loss to their rival the Alumni Dawgs, notching a big win over the Morissey Manor this past Sunday. Dillon will again be led by sophomore quarterback Colin Conway on offense, while senior defensive back Ron Sutsko will command the defensive unit.
This game is a pivotal one for both team, with the winner being on the fast track to the postseason, and the loser left with a difficult road to the playoffs.
All Sports Stories for Friday, October 1, 1999