No. 19 Seneca Valley
Outlook: A victory over the Screaming Eagles (3-0) in this Montgomery County nonleague game would bolster Churchill's quest to reach the postseason for the first time since 1995. But history is not with the Bulldogs (2-1). Seneca Valley has won the teams' last seven meetings, dating from 1988; the last two years Seneca Valley has outscored the Bulldogs 90-0. Senior RB Quintin Cosby (74 carries, 446 yards, 5 touchdowns) has thrived behind Seneca's massive offensive line, led by senior T Jon Walko.
La Plata at Northern
Outlook: La Plata is 3-0 for the first time since 1998, when the Warriors lost to Northern in their fourth game. Even though La Plata's three opponents are a combined 0-8, the Warriors had won just one game in each of the past two seasons and have had one winning season since 1995. La Plata's double-wing offense is run-heavy, which could be trouble against Northern's defense, which has held its past two opponents to 109 rushing yards on 58 carries.
Annapolis at Arundel
Outlook: Under first-year coach and Annapolis alum Brian Brown, the Panthers are 3-0, already equaling their win total from last year. Last week, Annapolis earned a 13-7 overtime victory over then-No. 16 Severna Park. Annapolis will have to avoid a letdown against Arundel (2-1), a pass-happy team capable of scoring in bunches.
Dunbar at Ballou
Outlook: Defending Turkey Bowl champion Dunbar (1-2) plays its first D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Association game of the season against 2003 runner-up Ballou, which has dropped 10 consecutive games to the Crimson Tide. Ballou (2-2) won its past two games behind a strong rushing attack, led by senior RB David Washington (313 yards and two TDs). The Knights' defense will face a multifaceted Crimson Tide offense that features WR James McDonald and RBs D'Angelo Martino and Jerry Johnson.
No. 1 DeMatha vs.
No. 17 Gonzaga
Saturday at Dunbar, 1
Outlook: These powerhouses have met in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championship game three consecutive seasons, with DeMatha winning twice, including last year. The Stags (2-0), who will be without RB Anthony Wiseman (sprained knee), have not played since Sept. 10 because of a weather-related cancellation. Meantime, Gonzaga RB Joe Taylor (453 yards, five TDs) and the Eagles (3-0) are coming off last Saturday's victory over four-time Interstate Athletic Conference champion Georgetown Prep.
Compiled by Tarik El-Bashir, Judith Evans, Alan Goldenbach, Eli Saslow and Jake Schaller.