CALVERT AT THOMAS STONE

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Last week: Calvert lost to Westlake, 28-7. Thomas Stone defeated Chopticon, 16-13.

Last meeting: Thomas Stone won, 28-16, on Sept. 25, 2004.

Outlook: The letdown test is here for Thomas Stone. The Cougars hung on to defeat Chopticon after a failed fake punt attempt and then a successful one in the fourth quarter. Now, with Lackey looming next week, the Cougars face Calvert, which hasn't beaten Thomas Stone since at least 1995. This also is the Cougars' homecoming. They are, however, one of only five teams in the Maryland 4A East region with a winning record, so they are very much in the playoff hunt.

CHOPTICON AT NORTHERN

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Last week: Chopticon lost to Thomas Stone, 16-13. Northern defeated La Plata, 29-6.

Last meeting: Northern won, 27-16, on Oct. 14, 2004.

Outlook: The momentum is gone for Chopticon, and now the Braves will find out whether they have the ability to get past one of the better teams in the conference. If they can, the playoffs look like a strong possibility, with their final four opponents carrying a combined 5-15 record. But will Chopticon recover physically in just four days to play a game that could set the Braves back on the right track or perhaps send them into a tailspin?

HUNTINGTOWN AT LACKEY

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Last week: Huntingtown lost to McDonough, 24-6. Lackey defeated Great Mills, 44-0.

Last meeting: Lackey won, 36-0, on Oct. 29, 2004.

Outlook: Maybe last week's romp over Great Mills will revitalize Lackey. With Chopticon's loss, and with games remaining for the Chargers against Northern and McDonough, Lackey's playoff hopes, however slim, remain alive. After falling behind in the first quarter against McDonough, Huntingtown looked much improved in the second half, tackling better and showing flashes of moving the ball with some consistency.

LEONARDTOWN AT MCDONOUGH

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Last week: Leonardtown lost to Patuxent, 46-0. McDonough defeated Huntingtown, 24-6.

Last meeting: McDonough won, 32-27, on Sept. 10, 2004.

Outlook: McDonough won't look past this one. The Rams trailed the Raiders by eight at halftime last season and held off a late Leonardtown rally. It was a game that threatened McDonough's whole season because it was followed by a loss to Northern and a one-point victory at Patuxent, which spurred the Rams to a strong finish and their first playoff berth in 13 years.

PATUXENT AT GREAT MILLS

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Last week: Patuxent defeated Leonardtown, 46-0. Great Mills lost to Lackey, 44-0.

Last meeting: Patuxent won, 53-7, on Oct. 29, 2004.

Outlook: Patuxent's last three games are against McDonough (fellow 2A South team), Westlake and Northern, and the Panthers know they probably will have to win at least two of those to make the playoffs. They'll need momentum heading into that stretch. After scoring 91 points in the past two weeks, and with Great Mills and Huntingtown next on the schedule, Patuxent has the opportunity to do that.

LA PLATA AT WESTLAKE

When: 7 p.m. Saturday.

Last week: La Plata lost to Northern, 29-6. Westlake defeated Calvert, 28-7.

Last meeting: Westlake won, 27-0, on Oct. 22, 2004.

Outlook: The conference is now Westlake's to lose after Chopticon's loss. Given the Wolverines have not won sole possession of a SMAC title since 1998, expect them to maintain focus. Several Wolverines, including senior Pha'Terrell Washington, sat out the Calvert game with minor injuries, but Westlake Coach Dominic Zaccarelli expects everyone to be ready for Saturday's game, which was pushed back a day because of soggy field conditions from heavy rains.

-- ALAN GOLDENBACH