* What: Maryland 3A quarterfinal.
* When: Friday, 7 p.m.
* Where: Thomas Stone High School.
* Records: Westlake 8-2, Thomas Stone 10-0.
* Last week: Thomas Stone defeated Westlake, 20-14.
With No. 19 Westlake playing at No. 12 Thomas Stone on Friday in a Maryland 3A quarterfinal--a rematch of last Friday's game that determined the Southern Maryland Athletic Conference championship--Southern Maryland Extra talked to the people who may know the Cougars and Wolverines best: four players and one coach from other SMAC teams.
Analyzing Westlake vs. Thomas Stone
The advantage "has to go to Thomas Stone's kick return team. [Marcus] Whalen is the biggest threat, so you have to try and kick it away from him. But then you have [Mike] Finamore on one side and [Mark Johnson] on the other. . . . The best thing Westlake can do is just try to squib-kick it so no one can return it."
Stone on Offense
"Westlake's defense has a lot of speed, from the line to the linebackers to the secondary. Thomas Stone doesn't have as much speed up front, but they're big, they have a mobile quarterback and they have speed in the backfield. I think it's a pretty even match. . . . This game is going to be super close."
--La Plata junior RB-DB Titus Green
"I think [playing a team twice in a row] favors the person who lost the first game, but then how can it when the other team knows what they have to do to beat them? . . . I guess I'd prefer to be on the losing side of the last one. That should make it easier to motivate the kids."
--La Plata Coach Joe Williams
"I think Thomas Stone has the edge, because they're coming off the big win. That should give them the upper hand, a sense that if they did it once, they can do it again. I think Thomas Stone is also a lot more physical than Westlake from what I've seen and has a little more talent all-around."
--Calvert senior WR Marshall Cooper
Westlake on Offense
"Westlake has three great running backs in Gonzie Gray, Recardo Evans and Denis Hicks, and it's tough to try and stop all of them at all times. All three are tough to tackle; I know they ran all over us. And the wing-T they run is confusing because there is so much misdirection and counters and hiding the ball, so you have to be disciplined on defense and stay at home. I guess Thomas Stone did a good job of that Friday--they'll have to do it again."
-- McDonough junior QB Travis Peters