Week Four could be redemption week for the Fairfield high school football teams.
There are some favorable matchups for the local clubs. After a week that all four teams were beaten by a combined 160-39 score, a favorable schedule could signal a morale boost for all.
I, on the other hand, had a pretty favorable week picking. I got all four games right, and even managed some correct scores. Although, I'll admit, it wasn't all that difficult with week three's games.
We'll start on Saturday and with the team in search of both redemption and payback.
GAME OF THE WEEK
at Harding (0-3),
Saturday, 2:30 p.m.,
Here it is, Ludlowe fans: your chance at redemption. I watched the Falcons play at Trumbull on Saturday, and was a little impressed. They had spirit, they had desire, they played desperate and scored first-- two traits I'd not seen from a Ludlowe football team in a long time.
I described the Falcons' 35-7 loss to many as a slow, painful death. Ludlowe moved the ball and played decent defense. Pass defense was an issue, but Ludlowe bent and didn't break a few times. It basically was a 21-7 game until the fourth quarter.
Is Trumbull an upper-echelon FCIAC team this year? No, but the Eagles do have athletes. And Ludlowe went toe-to-toe with them for a while. That counts for something.
Now obviously a two-game losing streak to one of the state's worst program is embarrassing. Ludlowe SHOULD never lose to Harding. But the past is the past and Ludlowe can use it as fuel.
So what will happen this year? The Presidents enter on a six-game losing streak and are being outscored 101-22 thus far this year. They were handily beaten by Trinity Catholic 34-0 on Saturday and were trounced by McMahon the week before.
Ludlowe is coming off its best performance this year, will have its best running back-- senior Stephen Scholz-- healthy and playing, according to Falcons' coach Matt McCloskey. Ludlowe had some success on offense and with some extra healthy bodies -- assuming no players quit this week -- should be feeling good about itself.
Field conditions could be an issue with the weather we had this week. But that'd just be an excuse. If the Falcons lose this game, they'd better have better excuses than that.
In fact, they'd have `splainin to do. Pick: Ludlowe 19, Harding 6.
at Prep (2-1),
Friday, 6 p.m.,
Don't let the first quarter fool you. Prep competed, physically, at Xavier Saturday night. The Jesuits took some punches and even managed to stay competitive until the fourth quarter.
But this week we'll learn whether the Jesuits can rebound from that slobberknocker. Prep hosts a team it certainly could beat. The Gaels are 2-1, but narrowly escaped with a 34-28 win over Amity on Saturday. The Gaels and Jesuits played a great game last year, with Shelton holding off Prep, 20-13.
Jesuits coach Tom Shea knows that if his club wants to be considered a state playoff contender, it has to win Friday. Prep should be the favorite, as long as it plays how it is capable.
I think the Jesuits will. Pick: Prep 28, Shelton 20.
at Warde (0-3),
Friday, 7 p.m.
The Mustangs are licking their wounds after two losses by a combined 79-27. Warde should be 1-2, but as Bill Parcells would say "you are what your record says you are."
I'm hearing Warde's tinkering with a new offense, and may unleash that attack against Bassick. Whether that happens remains to be seen. But Warde's defense should make enough plays to slow the Lions-- who enter having lost 21-straight FCIAC games dating back to 2009-- and the Mustangs offense should be able to make this a rout. Pick: Warde 35, Bassick 8.
Oxford (2-1) at ND (0-3),
The Lancers finally get to make their home debut this year. McCarty's a good atmosphere for ND, and the Lancers are trying really hard.
But this game doesn't bode well for ND. Not one bit. Pick: Oxford 44, ND 15.
Last week: 4-0; Year-to-Date: 10-2.