As a means to look ahead to the 2011 season, I’ve decided we’ll spend each morning this week ranking the best games of the upcoming Section 1 football season. It started Monday morning with a look at Week 1.
We’ll focus on one week per day. Week 2 will be featured today. If you need to take a peek at each’s team’s schedule, you can find it here. For your reference, the first game is Week 1, the second is Week 2 and so on.
Now, below is a look at the highlights from Week 2, which, at first glance, is not as strong as Week 1.
You may see it otherwise, so please feel free to add your own opinion about what I’m right, why I’m wrong or why you would have ranked them differently.
The best from Week 2 —
1. North Rockland at White Plains: There’s a fair share of pressure on the Tigers this season coming off last season’s disappointing early playoff exit and having seen them earn the No. 2 overall Piner ranking. This won’t be an easy opener. North Rockland will enter with an advantage after having played in Week 1 and could be sharper than White Plains, which will take a bye in order to leave a date open for the Turkey Bowl vs. Stepinac. No doubt this headliner will be triply interesting with, 1. playoff implications, 2. a quality matchup of good programs, and 3. public intrigue. Sign me up…
2. Harrison at Poughekeepsie: This could easily be 1A. Class A is so wide open, these teams could just easily be contenders for a championship or fighting for playoffs berths. They met last year in the Class A semis but will be without a constellation of stars from that game. One thing is certain, however: The winner will earn some early buzz as a team to be reckoned with.
3. John Jay at Rye: With Rye drawing Somers and John Jay drawing Ossining in Week 1, either could very easily face a potential 0-2 record to start the season. Both teams have their own fences to mend this offseason but they will provide one another a challenge regardless.
4. Yorktown at Arlington: Opponents will keep an eye peeled on these two for what they’ve done in recent seasons, so when better than when they play one another? Of course, Yorktown reached the Class AA semis last season and pushed New Ro deep into the second half. Arlington missed the playoffs but has strung together three solid seasons. In all likelihood, one of these teams will find themselves dancing come playoff time, if not both. This could determine who finishes the regular season higher in the Class AA pecking order.
5. Scarsdale at John Jay-East Fishkill: Two teams many believe will be very, very good. Scarsdale surprised many by beating Ketcham last season and proved it had to be taken seriously going forward. Looking back, it turned out we learned plenty from that game. This will be a similar test for the Raiders, who would like nothing more than a second straight playoff appearance.
New Rochelle at Mount Vernon: The section’s oldest rivalry but one some disinterested New Ro fans would rather see take a hiatus.
Panas at Lakeland: Obviously, another great rivalry, but it’s one-sided right now in favor of Lakeland.
Spring Valley at Nyack: The Indians have ruled this series for decades. Spring Valley will enter the next edition with plenty of uncertainty after graduating several long-time starters/stars like Shaquille Gould, Calvin Heurtelou and Andre Fils.
Our Lady of Lourdes at Westlake: A similar matchup to Edgemont-Nanuet from Week 1. Someone’s going to contend in Class B. Could one of these two jump into the conservation?