Football preview: Bridgeton at Barnegat

Bridgeton sophomore runnning back Stefon Bowman rushed for 722 yards last season on 132 carries.

Youth didn't bother the Bridgeton or Barnegat football teams this season.

Both teams are young but both still qualified for the postseason. They meet at 7 p.m. today at Barnegat in a South Jersey Group III quarterfinal.

Bridgeton features sophomore running back Stefon Bowman, while Barnegat starts sophomore Cinjun Erskine at quarterback.

Bridgeton comes off one of its biggest wins of the season - a 36-30 triple overtime win over Vineland. Bowman rushed for 142 yards and scored the winning touchdown on an 8-yard run.

Meanwhile, Barnegat has struggled for consistency all season. Barnegat has not lost two in a row, but the Bengals have won two in a row just once this year. Barnegat reached the South Jersey Group II semifinals the past two seasons.

Key players for Bridgeton: Ronald Williams, QB, 35-of-98 for 444 yards and five touchdowns; Stefon Bowman (above), RB, 146 carries for 796 yards and seven touchdowns; Nazir Williams, WR/DE, 17 catches for 169 yards and two touchdowns and 7 sacks on defense; Quasheem Taylor, LB, 62 tackles; Cappadonna Miller, RB/DB, four interceptions.

Key players for Barnegat: A.J. Opre, RB, 100 carries for 514 yards; Cinjun Erskine, QB, 29-of-53 for 371 yards and 53 carries for 268 yards and six touchdowns; Pat Moran, WR/DB/K, 33 catches for 402 yards and two touchdowns; Chris Stoma, LB, 85 tackles; Greg Moran, LB, 70 tackles and two interceptions.

Keys to victory: The winner could be which young team keeps its poise. Bridgeton will try to establish the run with Bowman. Barnegat will try to get the ball in the hands of Pat Moran, one of the region's top receivers.

Michael McGarry

Game details

Who: Sixth-seeded Bridgeton (5-4) vs. third-seeded Barnegat (4-4)

When/where: 7 p.m. today at Barnegat

What's next: Winner advances to the semifinals the weekend of Nov. 30/Dec. 1 against the winner of tonight's other quarterfinal between seventh-seeded Highland Regional (4-5) and second-seeded Delsea Regional (8-1).

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