HIGH SCHOOL GAME OF THE WEEK
WHO: No. 4 Boys and Girls Kangaroos (6-3) vs No. 6 Grand Street Campus Wolves (6-3)
WHEN: Saturday, Nov. 9 at 12:00 p.m.
WHERE: Old Boys High School Field, Troy Ave & Rutland Road, Brooklyn, 11203
WHY IS THIS GAME IMPORTANT: The Public School Athletic League playoffs, a 16-team, single-elimination tournament, starts this weekend and the Boys and Girls vs Grand Street Campus game is the best one of the week as it pits two exciting and closely matched teams from Brooklyn against each other.
Boys High has been one of the best programs in the city, but it came into this season with just one player returning player on a small, 30-player team. Coach Clive Harding said that in his years as a coach, he’d never seen such a turnover and that, early on, he had no idea where each player was going to play because so many of them were inexperienced.
Here we are today and the Kangaroos finished with a solid 6-3 record with impressive wins against Canarsie, Sheepshead Bay, and Clinton. Along the way some real players have emerged including Hollis Superville, who had 507 yards rushing, 198 yards receiving, a sack, a pick, and two fumbles recoveries, Brandon Harding, who had 552 yards rushing, 68 yards receiving and a fumble recovery, Dashawn Brice, who had 755 passing yards with four TD passes and three running touchdowns, and Shameek Brown, who had seven sacks and 19 tackles.
“We knew that it wasn’t going to be easy coming in and competing right away so we focused on working hard all summer,” said talented offensive lineman Izaiah Wright. “So when we started the season, a lot of people didn’t realize that we would be as good as we were. Coach kept telling us that we needed to work hard, that’s what we did and I think that’s where our success comes from.”
Meanwhile, Grand Street is not normally thought of as a big football school. The last time they were in the playoffs was 2010 and they were quickly out in the first round. Three weeks ago, when they had a 3-3 record, it looked like they might miss out on the playoffs altogether. Then they went on a three game winning streak that included an impressive 30-0 victory over New Utrecht last week to make the playoffs. It was a sign that they’ve come a long way.
That win over the Utes was a bit unexpected, but it was a great game to demonstrate some of their weapons. Quarterback Justin White threw for 249 yards to connect on a pair of touchdowns and ran for another, Rahmel Ashby, ran for 103 yards with a TD, six different players caught passes including Lynell Robinson, who had 100 yards receiving and a TD. On defense, Randy Lewis had a sack, recovered a fumble and returned it for a touchdown, Alex Badine had an interception and Donnell Scott, Edwin Lee, and Marcus Boatwright each recovered fumbles as well.
Defense is going to be the key to this game. We know that both teams have strong offenses so whichever team’s defense steps up and shuts the other team down it is their game for the taking. Grand Street has the momentum here though as they are coming off a shutout while Boys High allowed 41 points to Lincoln last week.
“We know that we can’t count Grand Street out because a lot of people thought the same things about us, that we were young and weren’t ready,” Wright said. “In the PSAL, every team can win every week. I tell my teammates all the time, ‘don’t sleep on anybody.’”
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
Boys High senior Hollis Superville RB/S
Boys High junior Brandon Harding RB/DT
Boys High senior Shameek Brown TE/DE
Grand Street junior Justin White QB
Grand Street sophomore Rahmel Ashby RB/KR
Grand Street senior Kareem Bacchus WR/PR
Boys High: Clive Harding
Grand Street: Bruce Eugene
HOW THEY GOT HERE:
Sept. 7 win over Jefferson via forfeit
Sept. 15 loss to Erasmus Hall 20-0
Sept. 21 win over Truman 30-6
Sept. 28 win over Canarsie 26-20
Oct. 6 win over Sheepshead Bay 22-8
Oct. 12 loss to Port Richmond 42-22
Oct. 19 win over Clinton 20-12
Oct. 26 win over Brooklyn Tech 28-6
Nov. 3 loss to Lincoln 41-6
Grand Street Campus
Sept. 7 loss to Flushing 31-22
Sept. 15 win over Brooklyn Tech 14-6
Sept. 21 loss to JFK 27-20
Sept. 27 win over Beach Channel 32-8
Oct. 6 win over Canarsie 22-12
Oct. 12 loss to Fort Hamilton 30-26
Oct. 19 win over Susan Wagner 36-16
Oct. 26 win over John Adams 34-6
Nov. 3 win over New Utrecht 30-0
FOLLOW THE ACTION: Follow Brooklyn Eagle Sports on Twitter @BkEagleSports for updates during the game. Then check back here at the website afterward for recaps, photos, and analysis on the game.