With its 21-14 victory over rival Paint Branch last Thursday, Blake improved to 3-1 on the season.

The Bengals have not lost since their season-opener against second-ranked Damascus, but, as coach Tony Nazzaro has warned his team, there is no room for a let-down, even with winless Blair up next on the schedule. Last season Blake started 3-1 but lost to a winless Blair team in Week 5 and ended up 6-4.

"I was quick to remind them that we were at the same point last year," Nazzaro said.

The Bengals have won with good defense (they have shut out two teams and given up just five touchdowns in four games) and quality special teams play.

"We've been winning the field position battle more often than not," Nazzaro said.

Blake is looking for its first ever postseason appearance and has a favorable schedule. After Blair (0-4), the Bengals will face Richard Montgomery (1-3), Walter Johnson (1-3), Sherwood (3-1), Churchill (3-1) and Kennedy (0-4).

Rest for Reidy

Damascus All-Met running back Matt Reidy spent the second-ranked Hornets' 25-8 victory over Blair last week on crutches. Taking the week off allowed him to nurse foot and knee injuries and prepare for this week's showdown with fourth-ranked Northwest.

Damascus also was able to play some of its reserves, including three freshmen. Freshman quarterback Kyle Frazier and freshman center Tony Edwards played the second half, and freshman defensive tackle Rob Osborne started the game.

"We're working a lot of young guys in," Damascus Coach Dan Makosy said. "If you have to go 14 games [the number of games a team that makes the state title game could play], you need to have some depth."

Target Practice

Sherwood sophomore quarterback Deontay Twyman has shown poise and ability beyond his years so far this season, his first as a varsity starter, completing 40 of 68 passes for 642 yards, five touchdowns and two interceptions.

But Twyman has benefited greatly by having two talented targets -- Chris Sheahin and Ben Everett. Sheahin, a 5-foot-11, 175-pounder with good speed, is back at Sherwood this year after spending last season at Good Counsel. He leads the Warriors with 19 receptions for 423 yards and two touchdowns.

The 6-1 Everett, meanwhile, provides a big target. He has 13 receptions for 144 yards and two touchdowns.

Feast or Famine

In its two victories, over Kennedy and Walter Johnson, Bethesda-Chevy Chase (2-2) has outscored its opponents 73-13. In its two losses, to Paint Branch and last week to fourth-ranked Northwest, the Barons have been outscored 83-0.

Streaking

With its 25-8 victory over Blair on Sept. 23, second-ranked Damascus extended its county-high winning streak to nine games. Watkins Mill, meanwhile, owns the county's longest losing streak -- 14 games. The Wolverines, however, came close last week, losing to Gaithersburg, 13-6. Last season, Watkins Mill's narrowest margin of defeat was 20 points.

Clutch Performer

Nick Scrivens, Churchill

With his team down by four points with 5 minutes 56 seconds remaining in a nonleague showdown with then-No. 19 Seneca Valley last week, Scrivens drove the Bulldogs 73 yards for the winning score.

The senior quarterback, who is playing football for the first time in high school, completed three of four passes on the drive for 35 yards, and all three completions were critical. The first, on third and 4 from the Bulldogs' 33-yard line, was an 11-yard completion to senior Sekou Yansane.

The second came with Churchill facing a fourth and 7 from the Seneca Valley 29. Scrivens rolled right, waited and then whipped a 13-yard strike to Yansane, who had found an opening in the middle of the field.

Scrivens' final completion of the drive came on second and 7 from the Seneca Valley 13-yard line. Scrivens waited, stepped into the pocket, started to scramble left, but then tossed the ball to senior Travis Schroeder, who fought to the 2-yard line, setting up senior running back Kyle Smith's 2-yard touchdown run.

Scrivens also booted a 44-yard field goal as time expired in the first half.

"He's always saying, 'I'll make it, I'll make it,' " Churchill second-year coach Jamie Collins said. "It could be a 60-yard kick, and he'd think he could make it."

Churchill's Kyle Smith scores the game-winning touchdown against Seneca Valley with 47 seconds left.Churchill quarterback Nick Scrivens, shown here against Wootton on Sept. 18, drove the Bulldogs 73 yards in 56 seconds to set up the winning touchdown against Seneca Valley.