Springbrook High School's football team has played Seneca Valley's team six times in the 1980s and four of the games have been decided by four points or fewer.
Saturday's game could be more of the same. As usual, 10th-ranked Springbrook (5-0), which has won more state AA titles than any other Maryland school, can point to its game against the fifth-ranked Screaming Eagles (5-0) as the one that means the most in its drive toward the playoffs.
Springbrook has won four of the six games, including last year's 13-12 game, but, this year, Coach Bob Milloy says he does not have the key to beating the usually small but aggressive Eagles.
"Seneca Valley is always tough and this game will be no exception," he said. "I saw them and they were impressive. This will be a tough game for both of us."
There will be plenty at stake when Seneca Valley's team plays at Springbrook at 2 Saturday.
The spoils of victory will include a 6-0 record, undisputed first place in the Montgomery AA league (and in their respective regions) and bragging rights that will last until their next meeting, which, with the realignment in the state, could be in the playoffs.
As usual, each team is strong defensively and has a good running game. Seneca Valley has outscored its five opponents by 119-22; Springbrook by 127-29. Seneca Valley's toughest test thus far was a 3-0 victory over Churchill. Springbrook was taken to the limit by Magruder before winning, 21-13.
Springbrook relies on the quickness of 5-foot-4, 140-pound junior tailback Calvin Martin (five touchdowns) and the short passes of Terry Wolfram (nine touchdown passes).
The Screaming Eagles prefer to run. John Joppy, Ricky Davis and Ron Smith have 11 of their team's 17 touchdowns. Quarterback Matt Kastantin (three touchdown passes) also can run.
In key games tonight, Bowie (5-0) will play improved Friendly (3-2) in a Prince George's AA game at 7:30 at Friendly. In Virginia games at 8, Osbourn Park (3-2) will play at Fauquier (4-1), 20th-ranked Woodbridge (4-1) at Potomac (3-2), Herndon (2-2) at fourth-ranked Marshall (4-0) and Madison (3-1) at Yorktown (4-1).
In other games Saturday, Coolidge (0-2) will play host to 14th-ranked H.D. Woodson (3-1) at 11 a.m., Gaithersburg (3-2) is at Walter Johnson (3-2) at 2 and 18th-ranked Gonzaga (4-1) will face third-ranked DeMatha (5-0) at Good Counsel at 7:30.
Friendly is coming off a 23-21 come-from-behind victory over Oxon Hill. Sean Flowers went 89 yards with a kickoff late in the game to win it. Robert Green has been the key to Friendly's offense, rushing more than 400 yards with six touchdowns. He also has kicked three field goals.