Super 7: Week 7

Isaiah Bruce has No. 5 Upper Darby off to a 5-1 start. Bruce is the first Delco running back to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark this season. (Special to the Times / ERIC HARTLINE)

Isaiah Bruce has been a huge part to No. 5 Upper Darby’s 5-1 start. Bruce is the first Delco running back to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark this season.
(Special to the Times / ERIC HARTLINE)

1. Haverford School (5-0)

2. Academy Park (6-0)

3. Haverford (5-1)

4. Episcopal Academy (5-0)

5. Upper Darby (5-1)

6. Garnet Valley (4-2)

7. Ridley (4-2)

Under Consideration: Interboro (5-1), Marple Newtown (6-0), Radnor (4-2)

Some more shuffling this week.

The top two teams (Haverford School, Academy Park) remain entrenched in the Nos. 1-2 spots. For the first time this year (arguably) the Fords were tested for all four quarters, but managed to persevere and come out with a 29-22 victory over Father Judge.

Academy Park cruised to a 49-7 victory over Penn Wood.  AP should be undefeated when it plays Interboro on the final Friday of the regular season. That’s shaping up to be a classic battle for the Del Val League championship.

Haverford High makes the biggest leap this week to No. 3. The Fords swap spots with Garnet Valley, whom they defeated Saturday night, 29-21. It truly was a historic victory for the Haverford program, which is one of three teams that are undefeated in the league (Marple and Upper Darby).

It could be argued that Episcopal Academy, No. 4, should be ahead of Haverford High. The Churchmen looked impressive off a bye week, defeating Conwell-Egan in blowout style, as they get set for a huge Inter-Ac League opener against Malvern Prep, which has a stunning win over St. Joe’s Prep on its resume.

Upper Darby stays put at No. 5 after a thrilling win over Conestoga, 25-22. Episcopal defeated Conestoga back in Week 2 by double digits, so you could point to common opponents and final score and all that stuff.

Garnet Valley falls from No. 3 to No. 6. Ridley rounds out the Super 7 after the Green Raiders took care of business against Lower Merion.

Finally, it’s worth noting that Interboro and Marple Newtown deserve to be in the Super 7, but not at the expense of Garnet Valley and Ridley.

Super 7: Week 6

1. Haverford School (4-0)

2. Academy Park (5-0)

3. Garnet Valley (4-1)

4. Upper Darby (4-1)

5. Haverford High (4-1)

6. Episcopal Academy (4-0)

7. Ridley (3-2)

Under Consideration: Interboro (4-1), Marple Newtown (5-0), Radnor (3-2).

Not much has changed from this week. Yes, Ridley is still in there. No, Marple Newtown and Interboro are not, but rest assured both teams are very deserving. If this was the Crazy 8 or Nasty 9, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

To recap the (rainy, bitter, raw) weekend it was:

The Haverford School, off a bye week, destroyed Penn Wood, 41-6. The Fords are very clearly the No. 1 team and that’s that.

Academy Park continues to maul every team that steps in its path, and when it’s all said and done, the Knights could be the No. 1 team in the county. AP toasted Cardinal O’Hara, 43-0, and has now outscored its opponents, 183-26. That’s wild.

Garnet Valley could be the hottest team in Delco. The Jaguars are playing incredible football, winners of four in a row after dispatching Springfield, 34-18. This week: Haverford High. Should be a good one.

Upper Darby moves from No. 5 to No. 4. Sure, they were expected to win big over Penncrest (and they did), but I see a team that can win a Central League title. They host Conestoga this week and still have games against Garnet Valley (Nov. 6) and Haverford (Thanksgiving). Wouldn’t it be something if one of those games determines the Central League title…

Speaking of Haverford, the Fords jump a spot to No. 5 after a dominating win over winless Strath Haven. The Fords are another team that seems to be clicking on all cylinders.

Through no fault of its own, Episcopal Academy falls two spots to No. 6. The Churchmen are set to play Conwell-Egan this weekend following a bye.

And, finally…Ridley. OK, so the consensus is the Green Raiders probably shouldn’t be in the Super 7, but they earned a hard-fought win against a good Radnor team last weekend following back-to-back losses. Whether they are actually better than unbeaten Marple Newtown or 4-1 Interboro, that debate can go on and on. For now, I think they are (slightly) better, so Ridley hangs on for another week.

Super 7: Week 5

1. Haverford School (3-0)

2. Academy Park (4-0)

3. Garnet Valley (3-1)

4. Episcopal Academy (4-0)

5. Upper Darby (3-1)

6. Haverford (3-1)

7. Ridley (2-2)

Under Consideration: Interboro (3-1), Marple Newtown (4-0), Radnor (3-1), Springfield (2-2).

Well, it doesn’t get any easier.

The biggest criticism I’m sure to hear regards Ridley, which falls to No. 7 after two straight defeats but not out of the Super 7 entirely. I’m not ready to dismiss them, but they’re hanging on by a thread.

Are there teams, listed under consideration, that deserve to take their spot? Sure, you can make the argument. (Note: Marple Newtown and to a slightly lesser extent Interboro have showed they deserve Super 7 love.) My logic in sticking by Ridley for one more week is simple: Despite the obvious struggles, I’d still pick them to beat any of those under consideration teams … for now.

Moving on…

Haverford High stays put at No. 6 only because Upper Darby had arguably the biggest win of any Delco team this year. The leap from unranked to No. 5 in one week will raise some eyebrows, but the Royals are truly a formidable offensive team, and they showed how dangerous they are in a 33-29 win over Ridley. If they can be slightly above average on defense, they can be scary.

Episcopal Academy fought off a tough Hill School squad and moved to No. 4, up one spot from last week.

The cream of the crop doesn’t change. Garnet Valley (No. 3) took care of business against Lower Merion, Academy Park (No. 2) looked awfully  impressive against Lansdale Catholic and season-long No. 1 Haverford School had a bye week. Keep an eye on that No. 1 spot. How does Haverford School move on without its starting quarterback, who was on pace to shatter Delco passing records? It won’t be easy, but the Fords remain an immensely talented team. And they’re still the top dog in Delco.

Super 7: Week 4

1. Haverford School (3-0)

2. Academy Park (3-0)

3. Garnet Valley (2-1)

4. Ridley (2-1)

5. Episcopal Academy (3-0)

6. Haverford High (2-1)

7. Radnor (3-0)

Under Consideration: Interboro (2-1), Marple Newtown (3-0), Springfield (1-2), Upper Darby (2-1).

Haverford School pounded West Catholic to remain No. 1, but the win came at a severe cost as All-Delco quarterback Kevin Carter suffered what appeared to be a season-ending knee injury. Carter was off to a magical start and on pace to set the county’s single-season passing record.

Academy Park is on Haverford School’s tail for the No. 1 spot. The Knights blanked Bonner-Prendergast and have outscored their three opponents, 119-19. They face (by far) their biggest challenge of the season Friday night, Catholic League AA power Lansdale Catholic (3-0), which has outscored its opponents, 115-33.

Welcome back, Garnet Valley. The Jaguars, who’ve flown under the radar in terms of being a Central League favorite, destroyed Ridley, 28-10. The Jags’ defense was overpowering and the offensive line flat-out dominated. The Green Raiders, at No. 4, have to figure out how to get their offense rolling this week.

And now this is where the Super 7 gets tough. Nos. 5-7.

Episcopal Academy drops down a rung because the Churchmen were heavy favorites against Cardinal O’Hara (0-3), but managed only a two-point victory. Of course, that’s a testament to the Lions, who are continuously improving under first-year coach B.J. Hogan and his all-star coaching staff. But EA — which, too, is a very young team — probably should have won that game by double digits.

Haverford (2-1) appears in the Super 7 for the first time since Week 1. The Fords have beaten Chester and Penn Wood, teams with a combined 1-5 record, but they have the best quarterback in the Central League (Jack Donaghy) and seem to be figuring things out. That counts for something.

The No. 7 spot was a toss-up between a pair of unbeatens in Radnor and Marple Newtown. Frankly, they both deserve to be there and will face off Thursday night to determine which is better, but for now I give the slight edge to a Radnor squad that defeated Springfield (1-2), the previous No. 5 team in the county. Defeating a Super 7 team will get you a ton of points.

Radnor hasn’t been in the Super 7 for more than a decade, probably. So congrats to the Raiders. It’s good to see new contenders emerge.

Super 7: Week 3

#Delcofootball Week 3 Super 7:

1. Haverford School (2-0)

2. Ridley (2-0)

3. Academy Park (2-0)

4. Episcopal Academy (2-0)

5. Springfield (1-1)

6. Garnet Valley (1-1)

7. Upper Darby (2-0)

Under Consideration: Haverford (1-1), Interboro (1-1), Marple Newtown (2-0), Radnor (2-0).

NOTES: All-Delco QB Kevin Carter is off to a tremendous start. Through two weeks, the senior has passed for 596 yards yards and seven TDs. Carter and the Fords notched a 45-28 win over Archbishop Ryan and have scored 95 points in two games. They are not a finished product, but they’re No. 1 until proven otherwise.

Ridley rallied in the second half for a 25-20 win over Springfield and stays at No. 2. This is might be the best Green Raiders squad since 2010, when they finished undefeated in the regular season.

Academy Park is hot on Ridley’s heels for the No. 2. The Knights pummelled Penncrest 42-0 Friday night and an argument could be made they should be No. 1 team.The Knights welcome 0-2 Bonner-Prendergast to town Friday night.

Episcopal Academy moves from No. 5 to No. 4 this week. The Churchmen defeated a tough Conestoga team that many believe could win the Central League title.

Springfield falls to No. 5 as a date with 2-0 Radnor awaits. Garnet Valley recovered from a poor Week 1 showing against Unionville with an impressive blowout of Bonner. The Jags stay put at No. 6 as they get ready to travel to Phil Marion Field Friday night.

Finally, Upper Darby sits at No. 7 for the second week in a row following a 40-34 win over Frankford of the Public League. An otherwise lopsided game got a little too close at end, but the Royals managed to pull it out.

Super 7: Week 2

#Delcofootball Week 2 Super 7:

1. Haverford School (1-0)

2. Ridley (1-0)

3. Academy Park (1-0)

4. Springfield (1-0)

5. Episcopal (1-0)

6. Garnet Valley (0-1)

7. Upper Darby (1-0)

Under Consideration: Chester (0-1), Delco Christian (1-0), Haverford (0-1), Interboro (0-1), Marple Newtown (1-0)

Notes: While Springfield was No. 2 last week and victorious in Week 1,  both Ridley and Academy Park put up dominating performances in their wins, and they had to move forward in the rankings. Springfield struggled for three quarters against Interboro (which, by the way, deserves credit despite the loss) before scoring 14 consecutive points in the fourth quarter on the way to a 14-9 win.

Episcopal Academy makes its Super 7 season debut at No. 5. Some may say that’s a little high since the Churchmen were not ranked a week ago.

The only Super 7 team that lost its Week 1 contest is Garnet Valley, which surprisingly couldn’t keep up with Unionville.

Finally, at No. 7 is Upper Darby, which I had trouble leaving out of the Super 7 last week. I considered Bonner, Episcopal and UD 7a, 7b and 7c at this time last week. Upper Darby dominated Bonner-Prendergast last Friday night.