Damascus and Sherwood met during the regular season, on a rainy night in late October, and the Swarmin' Hornets won, 25-7.

Four teams played -- and lost -- to Damascus and Sherwood this season. So who better to ask than those coaches what each needs to do to win?

* Damascus Must Control the Clock.

Richard Montgomery Coach Mike Bonavia: Damascus must "control the clock with that great running game to keep [Sherwood QB Deontay] Twyman and those boys off the field. If you do that, you take away all the explosiveness and all the weapons that Sherwood has.

* Sherwood's Passing Attack.

Blake Coach Rob Wendel: "Twyman is just so tough. He just picked apart Douglass's zone this weekend. They have good receivers and a good offensive coordinator [Terry Changuris]. Twyman executes that play-action to freeze the defense and keep everyone from just going after him. It's tough to stop that offense."

* Slow Damascus' Running Game.

Gaithersburg Coach Kreg Kephart: "Sherwood's defense has stepped up recently and obviously has to shut down [running backs] Anderson and Kyle Hogan and force Damascus to put the ball in the air."

* No Need for Damascus to Change.

Blair Coach Jeffrey Seals: "Damascus just needs to keep running the ball and throwing the ball now and then. Just keep doing what they've been doing. They're the team to beat."

Kephart: "If Damascus plays like they played all season, they are not going to make mistakes to help you beat them."

-- JOSH LEVENTHAL

and ANDREW LEVINE