High School Football Preview - Clearview vs. Timber CreekPosted:
SICKLERVILLE, N.J. – We are on week three of action on the high school football field this weekend with plenty of big games on tap, including a marquee matchup in the West Jersey Football League National Division with Clearview versus Timber Creek
Both teams are undefeated so far and major division and Group IV playoff implications are on the line.
We check in with the Chargers first.
Timber Creek is the reigning South Jersey Group IV champion and look more than ready to defend that crown, with two big wins to open the season.
First, it was a blowout victory over defending Group III champ Delsea on the road in week one. Then the Chargers stayed on the road in week two and knocked off Cherokee - a perennial Group V contender.
Quarterback Devin Leary already has 10 touchdown passes through two games. The junior leads all South Jersey passers in that department. And he's working with senior wide receiver Ezra Archie, the South Jersey leader in touchdown receptions with five.
"Chemistry. We've been working really hard all summer you know and everybody is getting it down pat. From the line to the running backs, to the receivers, it's chemistry. So we have that really well, and that's basically what's exploding out there on the field," said Ezrah Archie,a wide receiver for Timber Creek.
However, the off-season full of distractions for the Chargers with possible legal action against the team. But two weeks ago, the Camden County Prosecutor's office announced it would not file charges for illegal recruitment and enrollment.
"They've done a great job of staying focused and dealing with football and letting everybody else handle the other stuff. That other stuff is out of our control, the only thing we were able to do was focus on football. And for a bunch of teenage kids to be able to do that, as a staff, we were really really happy with it," said head coach Rob Hinson.
Hinson is proud of the way his kids handled the adversity, but he knows Timber Creek is in for another challenge Friday night against the Clearview Pioneers.
"This is going to be a tough match-up. They way they're executing I mean, they're putting up 42 points a game if my math is correct. They have about three or four guys that can score so it's going to be a big challenge," said Hinson.
Onto Clearview now who is off to its first 2-0 start since 2007.
The Pioneers missed the playoffs in 2015, winning just one of their first six games before finishing 4-6. But so far so good in 2016, beating Eastern 36:0 in week one. And then blasting Bridgeton by 25 points on the road last Friday night. Senior Jarrett Baker plays quarterback and safety for the Pioneers and had four touchdowns in the win last week - three on the ground and one through the air.
Baker and company lost to Timber Creek in a fairly one-sided game last October.
"The kids are ramped up just because of the name, Timber Creek, defending state champs. And they're in our division, and a Group 4 team. Obviously we want to play well, and we're both undefeated at this point so this game has a lot of meaning for both teams. There's a lot of things we need to work on, and the speed of the game is going to pick up. Timber Creek is a very fast team, and they play fast, and we have to pick up our tempo on offense and defense to be able to match that speed as best we can," said Mark Deal, head coach for Clearview.
Deal's team is out to prove it's the real deal this time around, and the school is amped up to take another shot at the Chargers, proving they mean business this fall.
"Yes this would definitely get our name on the map. The first two weeks have been awesome, so to win this game would be huge," said Baker.
So it's Clearview on the road against Timber Creek for a week three showdown at 7 p.m. Friday.