Woodbury's Anthony Reagan, Jr., center, runs with the football as West Deptford's Ryder DuBois (20) attempts to make a tackle in the game played at Woodbury High School in Woodbury, New Jersey on Friday, September 1, 2023. The Thundering Herd defeated West Deptford, 31-0. Collin Conway/D2 Sports Network
This upcoming weekend's highly anticipated action features an old-school Burlington County rivalry between two programs separated by only 4.5 miles, the latest edition of a traditional Holy War, and a pair of matchups between South Jersey Group 4 title contenders.
Here's an inside look at 12 of this weekend's top matchups with players to watch, predictions and a complete schedule of games involving West Jersey Football League teams located throughout the traditional seven-county South Jersey region:
New Egypt (1-3) at Palmyra (1-3), Friday, 6 pm
The Warriors were shutout for the third consecutive time with an 18-0 loss to Maple Shade last Friday. New Egypt also lost to Florence and Cinnaminson by a combined score of 65-0.
The Plumsted program inaugurated its latest campaign with a 26-6 win over Point Pleasant Beach on August 25. Carter Hughes tallied 117 yards on the ground and added a 17-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Lucas Burgos in the triumph.
Hughes leads the Warriors with 174 rushing yards this season. Kevin Valentine has 78 rushing yards and a touchdown. Burgos has five receptions for 106 yards and a touchdown. Aiden Healy leads the defense with two fumble recoveries. The junior also has 26 tackles, 1.5 sacks and a tackle for loss. Sophomore Sawyer Hughes has 20 tackles, three tackles for loss and a team-high two sacks. Brayden Nelson has charted 19 tackles, two tackles for loss and 0.5 sacks. Steven Meleg leads the program with 28 tackles.
Palmyra suffered a 12-6 loss to Haddon Township last Saturday. The Panthers also dropped contests to Burlington County foes Holy Cross Prep and Cinnaminson. Jaleel Latimore scored two touchdowns and accumulated 96 total yards in Palmyra's lone win of the season against Gloucester Catholic on September 2.
Palmyra has won three out of the last four meetings in the series since 2018. The Panthers captured a 34-12 victory on the road a season ago. Current Nebraska running back Kwinten Ives rushed for 209 yards and three touchdowns. Quarterback Evan Montgomery tossed a 27-yard touchdown pass to 2023 graduate Adonis Jones.
New Egypt's Caleb Kowaleski finished 9-for-18 passing for 101 yards, one touchdown and one interception in the 34-12 loss. Burgos intercepted a pass on defense in the setback and Healy racked up eight tackles.
The pick: Palmyra 20, New Egypt 14.
Highland (1-3) at Absegami (2-2), Friday, 6 pm
The Tartans earned their first win of 2023 with a 15-8 triumph over Clearview last Friday. Connor Leary completed 19 out of 27 pass attempts for 261 yards and two touchdowns. Nehemiah Butler rushed for 121 yards in the victory. The senior also reeled in four catches for 52 yards. Elijah Thompson hauled in seven receptions for a game-high 108 yards and a touchdown. Matt Tuttle added seven catches for 103 yards and a touchdown.
Absegami bounced back from a pair of losses to Atlantic City and Cedar Creek with a 28-13 win over Egg Harbor Township. Kendall Armstrong finished 17-for-32 passing for 189 yards and two touchdowns. Richard Gibson rushed for 92 yards and a score. He also caught a 17-yard touchdown pass from Armstrong. Nyjere Robinson reeled in three receptions for 93 yards and a score. Donald Johnson caught a team-high six passes for 58 yards.
The Braves' defense forced five fumbles and Sherwood Cross intercepted a pass in the win over EHT last Friday. Cross finished with nine tackles and a forced fumble. Andrew Whyee tallied a team-high 12 tackles, a forced fumble and a tackle for loss. Isiah Akpassa racked up seven tackles, three tackles for loss, a forced fumble and a sack.
Highland blanked the Braves, 56-0, a season ago. Leary finished 7-for-9 passing for 134 yards and a touchdown. Butler rushed for 101 yards and a score. Current Long Island running back Angelo Rodriguez exploded for 151 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. Mekhi Brown added 60 rushing yards as the Tartans racked up 347 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. Tuttle caught two passes for a team-high 55 yards.
The pick: Highland 22, Absegami 20.
Cinnaminson (4-0) at Delran (2-2), Friday, 6 pm
The Pirates improved their record to 4-0 with a 38-8 victory over Burlington City at home last Saturday. Brian Finerghty scored three touchdowns (two rushing, one passing) and completed 80 percent of his pass attempts for 87 yards. The senior also rushed for 96 yards. Kyle Willis racked up a game-high 116 yards on the ground and contributed a 34-yard touchdown run. Dom Delgripo also ran for an 18-yard score. Gavin Prendergast reeled in three receptions for 41 yards and a touchdown. Aedan Burk kicked a 22-yard field goal in the triumph and Sody Gantt snared an interception on defense.
Delran suffered a 57-19 loss against Willingboro last Thursday. Quarterback Vinny Sacca scored three touchdowns (two rushing, one passing) in the setback. Zahir Cobbins rushed for a team-best 60 yards. Sacca added 43 yards on the ground.
Cobbins has 305 rushing yards and three touchdowns this season. Sacca leads the Bears with seven touchdowns (four rushing, three passing) and has 199 yards on the ground. Sophomore Nick Pean has accumulated 230 rushing yards and three touchdowns. Senior Jimmy Rush has added 130 yards and a score. Delran's varied rushing attack operates behind a sizeable offensive line that features Rutgers commit Kenny Jones and 6-foot-2, 272-pound sophomore Jake Namnun. Namnun currently holds an offer from Boston College. The sophomore also visited Duke last Saturday.
The Bears have won two out of the last three meetings since 2020 against their neighboring rival that resides 4.5 miles away on Riverton Road.
Cinnaminson won last year's matchup, 27-23. Willis rushed for 52 yards and a touchdown. Anthony Udotong intercepted a pass on defense. Immanuel Brown charted six tackles and a tackle for loss.
The pick: Delran 28, Cinnaminson 27.
Egg Harbor Township (1-3) at Clearview (1-2), Friday, 6 pm
The Eagles fell short to Cape-Atlantic League rival Absegami, 28-13, a week after earning their first win of the season against Bridgeton. Kemun Council rushed for two touchdowns in the loss to the Braves. Council has 281 rushing yards and three touchdowns this season.
Bradley Smith has completed 22 out of 62 pass attempts for 342 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions for Egg Harbor Township this season. Bryce Jackson is his top target with 11 receptions for 160 yards and three touchdowns. Mike Simeon leads the Eagles' defense with 21 tackles. Calvin Johnson has 13 tackles, a team-high four tackles for loss and a sack. Junior John Lazos has contributed 17 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss. Noah Holliday has 14 tackles, a sack and a tackle for loss. Isaiah Samon leads the secondary with three passes defensed.
Egg Harbor Township was shutout in its first two games against Kingsway and Holy Spirit by a combined score of 88-0.
The Pioneers fell short to Highland, 15-8, in Blackwood last Friday. The Tartans scored the game-deciding touchdown with only 2:21 left in regulation.
Sean Ralph leads Clearview's ground attack with 145 rushing yards and three touchdowns this season. Quarterback Tyler Dell has added 100 yards and a score on the ground. A.J. Salerno has powered the Pioneers' defense with eight tackles and a team-high three tackles for loss in two games. Senior Matthew Chinchillo has contributed two tackles for loss. Matthew Babcock and Jake Veytsman have each recorded a sack this season. Babcock and Jack Welsh also have a fumble recovery each. Anthony Egolf leads Clearview's defense with one interception.
The Pioneers earned their first win of the season with a 17-13 triumph against Vineland on September 8. Ralph rushed for 112 yards and a touchdown in the win. The junior also recorded a sack and tackle for loss on defense. Dell added 68 yards and scored a touchdown late in the fourth quarter to secure the win. Aaron Lemons finished with five tackles, two tackles for loss and a forced fumble. Babcock tallied a team-high six tackles, two tackles for loss and a fumble recovery. Chinchillo forced a fumble, recovered a fumble, recorded a sack and collected two tackles for loss.
Clearview defeated Egg Harbor Township, 32-25, last September.
The pick: Clearview 21, Egg Harbor Township 14.