Each weekend of the high school football season brings questions.

Tonight, the Holy Spirit and Southern Regional teams face the biggest inquiries.

Holy Spirit hosts Mainland Regional at 7 p.m. How will the Spartans respond after losing to St. Joseph 4-7 two weeks ago in the season's most anticipated contest?

Southern regional plays at Toms River North at 7 p.m. A win and Southern clinches at least a share of the Shore Conference A South title. The Rams haven't won a Shore Conference championship since 1972. How will Southern handle the pressure?

Previews of those contests and this weekend's other games follow.

Cape-Atlantic League

American Division

No. 11 Atlantic City (4-0)

at Egg Harbor Township (2-3)

7 p.m. today (94.3 FM)

Atlantic City is No. 11 in The Press Elite 11. Running back Radi Tolbert, who sometimes lines up at quarterback, leads the Vikings with six touchdowns. Atlantic City running back Domaneek Hurd ran for two scores in last week's 19-2 win over Buena. EHT comes off a 48-15 loss to undefeated Hammonton. EHT running back Curtis Fitzpatrick has rushed 47 times for 234 yards and three touchdowns. EHT quarterback Ken Doughty has rushed for two touchdowns and thrown for two scores.

National Division

Ocean City (1-4)

at Hammonton (4-0)

7 p.m. today (98.7 FM)

Hammonton is No. 4 in The Press Elite 11. The Blue Devils' defense allows an average of 5.5 points per game. Russell Forchion averages seven yards per carry to spark the Hammonton offense. Quarterback Christian Mortellite has completed 68 percent (22-of-32) of his passes. Ocean City running back Ben Bethea (51 carries for 337 yards and seven touchdowns) has emerged as a top performer the past few weeks.

Mainland Regional (2-2)

at No. 5 Holy Spirit (2-2)

7 p.m. today (97.3 FM)

This is one of the region's biggest rivalries. Holy Spirit, No. 5 in The Press Elite 11, was off last week after losing to St. Joe 34-7 on Oct. 1. The Spartans rely on the rushing of Donta Pollock (106 carries for 703 yards) and Nigel Jones (63 carries for 409 yards). Mainland has won two straight to get in South Jersey Group III playoff contention. Mustang Dashown Walker has returned two kickoffs for touchdowns.

United Division

Buena Regional (1-4)

at Pleasantville (0-4)

7 p.m. today

Running back Luv'Uan Scott sparks Buena. Pleasantville is young and relies on running back Dontaye Rivera. Both teams have struggled to score. The first touchdown could win. Neither team has scored more than two touchdowns in a game.

Lower Cape May Regional (2-2)

at No. 1 St. Joseph (4-0)

Noon Saturday

St. Joe is No. 1 in The Press Elite 11. The Wildcats have outscored their opponents 178-14. Running back Kaheem Reynolds is one of St. Joe's many offensive standouts with 43 carries for 338 yards and four touchdowns. Lower lost to Bridgeton 13-6 last Friday.


Oakcrest (2-3)

at Middle Township (1-4)

7 p.m. today

Oakcrest needs a win to boost its playoff chances. The Falcons beat Vineland 21-0 last week. Middle defeated Pleasantville 13-6 last week for its first win. Middle running back Nigel Case has rushed 59 times for 312 yards and three touchdowns this season.


St. Joseph Metuchen (2-3)

at Cedar Creek (1-3)

1 p.m. Saturday

These teams are both first-year varsity programs. Both have a common opponent. Cedar Creek lost to Moore Catholic of Staten Island, N.Y. 35-20 on Oct. 1. St. Joe (Middlesex County) lost to Moore Catholic 8-7 last Saturday. Cedar Creek quarterback Damon Mitchell has four touchdown passes.

Shore Conference

No. 10 Southern Regional (4-1)

at Toms River North (4-1)

7 p.m. today

Southern can clinch a share of the A South title with a victory. Southern, No. 10 in The Press Elite 11, hasn't won a Shore Conference football championship since 1972. The Rams feature a versatile offense with quarterback Dan Higgins, who has thrown seven touchdown passes.

Matawan (3-2) at Barnegat (2-2)

7 p.m. today

Barnegat comes off one of the biggest wins in school history with last week's 26-2 defeat of Lacey Township. Barnegat running back David Smithman has rushed for 487 yards and three touchdowns. Wide receiver Pat Moran averages nearly 16 yards per catch.

Pinelands Regional (0-4)

at Lakewood (1-3)

2 p.m. Saturday

Pinelands is young and has struggled to produce points this season. The Wildcats have won two straight from Lakewood.

West Jersey Football League

Penns Grove (3-1)

at Wildwood (1-4)

7 p.m. today

Wildwood has dropped three straight after beating Clayton on Sept. 17. Penns Grove beat Schalick 24-2 last week.

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