Three local teams begin their season Friday night during the traditional second week of scrimmages, thanks to changes in the PIAA scheduling that allow for a Week Zero game and a bye week later in the season.
Here’s a look at these games:
Palmyra (7-4, 4-3 Mid-Penn Capital last season) at Camp Hill (11-2, 6-1 Capital)
Siebert Park, 7 p.m.
Breakdown: Our first look at a Lions offense without Penn State walk-on QB Michael Shuster. Quinn Buffington now gets the keys to an offense that put up more than 4,800 yards in 2015. The Cougars return Alon Rhette and Carl Reigle, two backs that combined for 1,500 yards and 16 TDs.
Key to the game: If Buffington can find a rhythm early, it should be all RB Bill Williams needs to get going after a 1,231-yard campaign last year. Buffington
doesn’t need to be Shuster; he just has to run the offense.
Our picks: Adams—Camp Hill; Geoff Morrow—Camp Hill
Red Land (3-7, 1-5 Mid-Penn Keystone) at Bishop McDevitt (13-2, 5-1 Keystone)
Rocco Ortenzio Stadium, 7 p.m.
Breakdown: The Patriots return plenty of fire power with Justin Johnson (1,238 rushing yards) and Jake Radic (1,076 passing yards). The Crusaders have the same lofty expectations, and that linebacker corp appears as strong as ever. Red Land’s offense against this typically tough defense will be a fun battle to watch.
Key to the game: QB Tayvon Bowers without his three prized receivers is the big storyline out of Harrisburg. Bowers, a Wake Forest commit, still has Mike Jones (1,517 rushing yards, 19 TDs) lined up behind him.
Our picks: Adams—Bishop McDevitt; Morrow—Bishop McDevitt
Trinity (3-7, 1-6 Mid-Penn Capital) at Annville-Cleona (6-5, 2-4 Lancaster-Lebanon Section 3)
Annville-Cleona Stadium, 7 p.m.
Breakdown: The Little Dutchmen have plenty of question marks to start the season, as does Trinity. Junior Noah Myers is now entrenched as the starting quarterback, and Adam Fox and Will Langan’s combined 1,900 rushing yards need replacing. For Trinity, QB Hunter Geisel is gone, as are several other weapons.
Key to the game: The Shamrocks will unveil a spread offense under new OC Chance Powell, who brought the spread to Carlisle two years ago. Annville lost eight starters from last year’s defense.
Our picks: Adams—Annville-Cleona; Morrow—Trinity