There has been a whole of talk this season about the rise of the Three Rivers League and how several teams in that league could go deep into the playoffs and that this is the league to beat this year.. We concur with that but we must never forget that the Metro League has for years been the power base of the State of Oregon at times dominating the discussion of who the best 10 teams in the State are. Tonight is a reminder of that fact. First of all the Metro League is home to the Jesuit Crusaders. They might be 3-2 right now but with Joey Alfieri putting up 350 yards rushing and 6 TD's tonight there is no reason to believe they could not go all the way. Their only losses came at the hands of a Nationally rated #1 Camas of Washington and Oregon's #1 6A Team in Central Catholic.
They are in the top 4 teams in Oregon and will lead the Metro again as usual.
Right behind them is the Southridge Skyhawks of the Metro League. They beat a rising Beaverton Beavers squad tonight 35-7 in a balanced Pass and run assault and some stout defense. The Skyhawks beat the Lake Oswego Lakers 35-13 earlier in the year and appear to be a Top 5 team as well. So those two squads (jesuit and Southridge) stand out from either League as teams that have set themselves up to move on deep.
Once you move those teams off the board the Metro and Three Rivers Leagues are very even. I would expect at this point the 3 Rivers League to put most of their teams into the playoffs and most of them will make it past the first round. Same applies to the Metro. Both leagues are very powerful but the Metro still gets the nod because Southridge and Jesuit appear to better at this point in time then anyone in the Three Rivers.
Any team can win the Three Rivers at this point. Jesuit appears to be the team to beat in the Metro for now.
Tonight's Game showcased a solid line for Southridge on both sides of the ball as well as all of the moving parts of the team that we have grown to admire for their toughness and swagger over the years.
AJ Woodin (Senior QB) was spot on after settling in and hooked up with multiple receivers. None more so then Arizona bound AJ Morgan who had a big night catching several balls, finishing off some nice runs, and scoring on two TD strikes. Devin Martinez in his 3rd year as a starter led the back field with a boat load of carries and used any room the line gave him to chew up yards. Jake Pruitt scored from the backfield as well for the Skyhawks. All and all the game was very balanced for the team who still has a chance to win the Metro league if they get past Jesuit.
The scoreboard showed a 35-7 win for Southridge but all and all Beaverton stayed in this game. They are young and talented and you will never find a Coach more dedicated and capable then Bob Boyer. Coach Boyer reminds me so much of Coach Riley at Oregon State with his demeanor and approach and even more so with his ability to get the most of his kids. The boys and the Beaver fans cheered to the final whistle and celebrated on the field even with the loss. They know how to win Championships and how to lose too with grace and honor. This is why they surprise teams every year especially late in the season and in the playoffs.
Sam Noyer folks is for real. The 6'4" 185 lb Sophomore QB has a very good arm that is still developing but the signs are there for a very good future. His accuracy was a bit all over the place but when he had a chance to settle in he was spot on. He scrambled well and surprised Southridge with a beautiful play action pass to Bryce Barker; a 6'2"- 200 lb Junior stud at WR that went for 80 yards and the score on the 3rd play of the game. Watching Sam I picked up more on the intangibles and the leadership skills he has along the sideline and in the huddle. Things that you can not Coach; he has those things. Watch out for this guy!
Barker was excellent to watch and showed leadership both sides. He is a very solid kid as were a number of the wide receivers. The Beavers went 4 wide quite a lot and with some added guys up front they can be a very tough team to defend. Adding to that was 5'10" 190 lb Chidubem Nnoli at RB and the Junior racked up a nice yards almost breaking for a TB on 2 occasions. I look for him to be a force in the coming months.
Up front we count 5 players over 6'4" on the roster and while they are young they appear to be melding into a nice unit. It was with pleasure that we watched the coming out of Jared Hilbers at O-Line and D-Line. This kid is so tough and is only a Junior. He is 6'7" and 260 lbs and is not carrying any extra weight. On Offense he was excellent and gained high marks for technique and pad level. He was not defeated much if at all and in that frame he iedis going to be a hot recruit this time next year. Defensively he played every down too and the Skyhawks ran away from his side of the field mostly. He had several hurries and was a constant pressure on Woodin. Walking away and watching some film later we conclude that this is one of the finest Junior line prospects we have seen in some time. The Beavers have a great one potentially in this guy.
There are a lot of other bright spots for the Beavers and as they get into games against Westview, Aloha, and Sunset things will get interesting as all those teams can really play too.
Another night in the Metro and we are reminded just how solid of a League it still is. Look for both of these teams to move on to the post season play in 5 weeks.
Catch Our Video Interview with AJ Morgan
Catch Our Interview With Beaverton QB Sam Noyer