The week six matchups on this week’s high school football schedule lack some of the luster with no battles of unbeatens, but several will go a long way toward determining playoff spots and positioning. There are also a few that look like mismatches, but may very well likely turn into competitive contests.
Oxford Hills (1-4) at Bangor (5-0), Cameron Stadium, 7 p.m. Friday: The Vikings of South Paris will be both all too familiar and unique. Offensively, they’ll give the Rams a new wrinkle to prepare for, but defensively it’s the same old system the Rams use themselves.
“They run both power-I and shotgun. We haven’t seen power-I yet, but we did see shotgun for the first time last week,” said Bangor coach Mark Hackett. They’re coming along. I watched them play five overtimes against Edward Little last week and they improved a lot just in that game.
“When they’re in shotgun, it’s about 50-50 pass-run, and in power I it’s mostly run.”
Hackett and his team are happy to be back home after spending three of the last four weeks on the road, but he’s also concerned about a possible letdown.
“Absolutely, with Lawrence and homecoming the week after, and being on the road for awhile, there’s a concern,” Hackett said. “But I think they’re really motivated.”
Center and defensive tackle Joe Quinn is still out with a broken pinkie finger and offensive guard-defensive tackle Tommy Augustine is out another week after arthroscopic knee surgery, but should be back for next week’s homecoming game.
In their absences, Alex McDade and Josh Bishop have filled in capably, drastically improving Bangor’s depth as a result.
Stearns (4-1) at Foxcroft Academy (5-0), Oakes Field, Dover-Foxcroft, 7 p.m.: Running back Billy Eurich and quarterback Jared McGreevy lead the Millinocket’s Minutemen with 36 points (six touchdowns) and 28 (four), respectively, but the Ponies counter with two for he league’s top five scorers in Ian Champeon and Josiah Richard.
Running back Champeon (375 rush yards) has nine touchdowns while Richard has four to go with 26 PAT kicks. Quarterback Ryan Stroud has accounted for six touchdowns.
A win would vault Stearns into second place while the Ponies are trying to stick with fellow unbeaten John Bapst with three weeks left in the regular season.
Maine Central Institute (4-1) at Rockland (1-4), Wasgatt Field, 7 p.m.: A loss virtually eliminates the Tigers from the playoff chase while the MCI Huskies of Pittsfield are trying to rebound from their first loss of the season.
MCI quarterback Shawn Bennett leads the Huskies with six TDs and 456 yards rushing. Rockland has had trouble getting its offense untracked behind Dylan Meklin and Tyler Fogg, who’ve combined for six TDs and 558 yards rushing.
Calais-Woodland (2-3) at Bucksport (2-3), Carmichael Field, 7 p.m.: If either of last year’s LTC semifinal foes are to make a return, this game could be the one that catapults them back.
The visiting Silverados the fifth- and seventh-leading rushers in the LTC with fullback Kevin Ross (543 yards, six TD’s) and Ryan Cavanaugh (410, six). Bucksport’s offense runs through Vinnie Tymoczko, who is third with 661 yards and seven scores.
Mount View (2-3) at John Bapst (5-0), Cameron Stadium, Bangor, 7 p.m. Saturday:
The LTC’s top two individual scorers — John Bapst’s Bill Wetherbee and Mount View’s Tyler Rednour — lead their teams into one of those games that should be more competitive than team records indicate.
“I hate to use the term, but I think it could be one of those trap games because of their record and the fact they do a lot of things and have a lot of good talent,” said John Bapst head coach Dan O’Connell. “I don’t think their record is indicative of their talent level.”
O’Connell is also wary of Mount View’s multiple looks and ability to shift formations.
“Offensively, they’re very versatile out of a wing set with double tight ends. They run a lot of different formations and are very unpredictable as far as their tendencies,” O’Connell said. “Aaron Santana throws a good ball and Rednour is a great back and athlete.”
The Mustangs’ defense also throws offenses for a loop.
“They run a 4-2 defense and move everyone else around. They’re pretty athletic,” he said. “I think we went over about nine different formations they were in last week.”
Two other key games this week are 2-3 Mount Desert Island at 3-2 Waterville, a rematch of last season’s PTC B playoffs, and 4-1 Lewiston at 5-0 Lawrence at Keyes Field in Fairfield.