The Place to Be: Suitland
The game: High Point at No. 6 Suitland.
Kickoff: Friday, 3 p.m.
Records: Eagles 1-0 overall, 0-0 Prince George's 4A; Rams 0-0, 0-0.
Last season: Suitland, 21-12.
Key players: High Point QB Dante Harris, DT Shane Thurston, RB Ray Hines, LB Fred Couch. Suitland QB Ronitto Rogers, LB Sidney Baskins, TE Anthony Moten.
Eagles' keys to victory: Continue to gain yards on the ground.
Junior Ray Hines had 21 carries for 166 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-0 victory over defending Maryland 3A champion Friendly last week. Suitland probably will try to stack the line of scrimmage and force High Point QB Dante Harris to pass. If Hines can break loose, things should open up for Harris.
Hines "is deceptively strong," High Point Coach Dale Castro said. "He's not just a dancer. He'll lower his shoulder to get the extra yard."
Defensively, the Eagles need to continue making big plays. DT Shane Thurston, a three-year starter, returned a fumble for a touchdown and had a sack, two tipped passes and six tackles in the victory over Friendly. Senior LB Fred Couch had an interception return for a touchdown negated by a penalty.
"We had a pretty good opening night, but that is history," Castro said. "We need to get to work on Suitland and we need to improve if we're going to beat Suitland. We won the game, but there were things we didn't do that well."
Rams' keys to victory: Reduce mistakes and convert scoring opportunities.
Coach Nick Lynch was beside himself after his team committed four turnovers in three quarters before its season opener against McNamara was suspended early in the fourth quarter with Suitland trailing, 14-0.
"They look like a machine to me," Lynch said of High Point. "I'm totally impressed with their execution of offense and how they get around the ball on defense."
In order to win, Suitland must get better play out of junior QB Ronitto Rogers, who made his first start last week. He threw an interception in the end zone in the final minute of the first half.
"He did some good things, but he did some inexperienced things you're thinking a kid won't make," Lynch said. "But you have to understand it."
Directions: Capital Beltway to Pennsylvania Ave. exit. Take Pennsylvania Ave. toward the District. Continue to Silver Hill Road and turn left. The school is a half-mile on the right.
Other Games of Note
Friendly at Hylton, Thursday, 7:30 p.m.: Until Friendly was thumped in its opener by High Point last week, this loomed as one of the biggest games of the season. Now, it is almost a must-win for the defending Maryland 3A champion Patriots if they do not want their playoff hopes to be derailed two weeks into the season. Last season, Douglass finished 9-1 but failed to gain an at-large 3A playoff berth.
Hylton, the defending Virginia AAA Division 6 champion, enters with a 17-game winning streak. QB Kenny Irby leads the Bulldogs, but the key matchup will be Hylton's struggling offensive line against Friendly's defensive line, which was pushed around by High Point.
Eleanor Roosevelt at Woodbridge, Thursday, 7:30 p.m.: The other half of the Prince George's-Prince William matchup. The Raiders were beating Riverdale Baptist, 50-0, in the fourth quarter of their opener when the game was suspended because of lightning. Woodbridge should provide a better challenge for Roosevelt. The Vikings have lost their first two games and should be desperate to avoid an 0-3 start. This will be the first chance for Roosevelt QB Wendall Williams to show off his versatility passing and running.
Laurel at Bowie, Friday, 2:45 p.m.: The host Bulldogs stand a good chance of a rare 2-0 start. They defeated North Hagerstown, 36-6, in their opener. Last season, Bowie's only victory came against Laurel, a 25-20 win in October. In that game, Dion Mitchell played running back for the Bulldogs; now he is the team's quarterback. Laurel enters with a 12-game losing streak.
* THIS WEEK'S GAMES
Pallotti at Boys Latin, 4
Crossland at Thomas Johnson, 7
E. Roosevelt at Woodbridge, 7:30
Friendly at Hylton, 7:30
Bladensburg at Forestville, 3
Coolidge at Fairmont Heights, 3
Douglass at Surrattsville, 3
DuVal at Central, 3
High Point at Suitland, 3
Largo at Parkdale, 3
Laurel at Bowie, 2:45
Northwestern at Oxon Hill, 3
Potomac at Edgewood, 3
Chopticon at Gwynn Park, 3:30
Riverdale Baptist at Theodore Roosevelt, 7:30
Fork Union vs. DeMatha at Parkdale, 1:30
O'Connell at McNamara, 1:30
* LAST WEEK'S RESULTS
Bowie 36, North Hagerstown 0
Central 32, Frederick 16
DeMatha 14, Dunbar 14 (susp.)
Douglass 32, Northern 0
Forestville 58, Colonial Forge 3
Gwynn Park 34, Lackey 0
High Point 35, Friendly 0
McNamara 14, Suitland 0 (susp.)
Northwestern 20, Fairmont Heights 7
Parkdale 26, DuVal 25
Potomac 20, Bladensburg 0
E. Roosevelt 50, Riverdale Baptist 0 (susp.)
Surrattsville 51, Rockville 18
Westminster 32, Laurel 8
H.D. Woodson 42, Oxon Hill 26 (susp.)
Urbana 26, Largo 6
Western Tech. 38, Pallotti 19
Westlake 47, Crossland 17
By the numbers
The number of times Suitland has started a season with a loss in Coach Nick Lynch's four seasons. The Rams were trailing McNamara, 14-0, in the fourth quarter last week when the game was suspended because of lightning.
Combined fumbles lost by Suitland in its game against McNamara (3) and those recovered by High Point in its victory over Friendly (3).
Underclassmen on High Point's roster.
CAPTION: Laurel's Jon Goverman looks to pass.