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Newsday Sports Blog

Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2009 by Newsday Sports
Sachem North, Northport, Brentwood = Refreshing!

3:28 PM By Gregg Sarra

This is turning into a very interesting season of high school football. There is absolutely no one out there that can tell me with a straight face that they could have forseen the outcome on Week 1 in Suffolk's Division I. No way!

There is no one out there that could have correctly nailed the Pick Three for the the last three unbeaten teams in Division I. Since the start of pre-season seeding we have never seen the top three seeds in Division I all lose in the first week - never. Floyd, Connetquot and Longwood all dropped their respective season openers.

And what we have left in the unbeaten ranks are Northport, Sachem North and Brentwood. Sachem North and Northport pulled off big upsets in Week 1. And Brentwood outgunned Longwood in overtime in a battle of the Wood!

Who really believed Sachem North could beat Floyd -- other than the Sachem faithful? This win came in the aftermath of the exodus of coaches, who basically abandoned head coach Dave Falco, after a disappointing 2008 season where the Flaming Arrows failed to make the playoffs. It came on the heels of a heavy graduation, including top flight players like Craig Geoghan, Cong Tian and the "Q", Anthony Quezada. And it came on the opening day of a season that many believed Floyd would continue its winning ways and return to the championship.

That's a tremendous job by Falco, his staff and the influx of talent over there. Watch linebacker Jesse Scanna -- he's a big time player. Then they beat Sachem East in a yawner, where there were as many hard hits in the bleachers as there were on the field.

And what about Northport? The Tigers boast a power running game behind Dan Russo and Tom Delahunty but can they stop a good offense? And Brentwood is speedy and quarterback Alex Corporan is one of the very best this year.

It's a great start for all three teams. But this week will tell us so much about all three teams and if they're for real or not. Brentwood hosts Floyd and it looks like Floyd is rolling after a beatdown of Lindy last week. Northport hosts Lindy and will try to run the Tigers over to get to 3-0. The Bulldogs are missing that defensive nastiness they had with linebacker Joe Vespier. This one promises to be very physical.

Sachem North heads over to winless Longwood in a Friday night game. Longwood has had trouble stopping playmakers against Brentwood [Corporan] and Mike Pellegrino at Connetquot. This week the Lions must stop an emerging and talented halfback in playmaker Davon Lawrence. If not, they'll be looking from the bottom up at 0-3. These Sachem North -- Longwood games are always competitive and I expect more of the same this year.

My thoughts -- this division saw the first six games of the season settled by six points or less in Week 1. In Week 2, we saw some separation among teams -- but not much.

Predictions this week; Floyd over Brentwood -- The Colonials will shut down the Brentwood offense.

Connetquot over Patchogue -- The Thunderbirds offensive line is banged up but they return big time halfback Joe Zuco to complement rising star Mike Pellegrino. Connetquot has played sloppy defense through two games.

Longwood over Sachem North -- I just can't see Longwood losing three straight. if ever there is a must-win situation -- this is it.

Lindenhurst over Northport -- Northport and Lindy will light it up this weekend and the Bulldogs pull out a wild finish.

Ward Melville over Sachem East -- Ward Melville seems much improved and lost late to Brentwood.

Commack over Central Islip -- Both teams show signs of improvement. The winner of the turnover battle wins this game.

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