By TOM WILLIAMS
Mainland (5-2) at Ocean City (3-3)
Kickoff: 6pm on Friday
Place: Carey Stadium, 5th Street & the Boardwalk
Coaches: Both are Mainland graduates. Ocean City’s Kevin Smith, is 32-44 in his 8th season as a head coach. His teams are 2-3 against the Mustangs. Mainland’s Chuck Smith (no relation) is 35-54 in his 10th overall season. He is 7-20 in his third season at Mainland. Chuck Smith’s teams are 2-2 against the Raiders, including his seven seasons at Oakcrest. The two coaches were Mainland teammates in 1986 (Chuck was a senior and Kevin a freshman). As players, Kevin was 1-2 against OCHS and Chuck was 0-1.
Last Week Ocean City lost to Oakcrest, 20-14, in overtime. The Raiders are now 2-6 all-time in overtime games, the third worst record among CAL teams. Mainland was idle last week.
Points Per Game: OCHS 19.7, MRHS 19.1.
Points Allowed: OCHS 19.5, MRHS 10.9.
Ocean City Stats: Ocean City senior QB Ian Aungst (5-11, 181) has thrown for 1,180 yards and 11 touchdowns this season and has tied a school record with six straight games throwing for 100 yards or more. He is currently ninth all-time at OCHS in passing for a season and his 1,215 career passing yards are 10th. Aungst (167 yards, 4 TDs) is also Ocean City’s leading rusher. Senior Brandon Lashley (6-0, 170) has caught 24 passes for 380 yards and eight touchdowns, the most yards and TDs by any Cape-Atlantic League receiver. Sophomore Jake Schneider (5-8, 148) has 345 yards and three scores, senior Bill Kroeger (6-1, 201) has 259 receiving yards and junior Brian Beckmann (5-11, 162) has 120 yards – giving OCHS one of the best receiving corps in the area. Seniors Dan Auberzinsky (6-5, 322), Zac Clark (5-9, 193) and Jackson Young (5-10, 244) anchor the offensive line. Senior Brandon Lin (5-11, 202) and sophomore Jake Inserra (5-9, 186) have combined for 112 tackles. Senior Austin Green (6-0, 223) has five sacks this season and his 13.5 career sacks place him third all-time at OCHS. Lin has added four sacks and sophomore Will Drain (6-2, 204) three this year.
Mainland Stats: Senior quarterback Dean Hall (6-0, 186) has run for 289 yards and five touchdowns. He has only thrown the ball 44 times, completing 23 for 272 yards and two touchdowns. Senior Tyquan Campbell (5-11, 170), who has missed the last two games, has a team-high 304 yards rushing and has scored five times. Senior Joe Massari (5-7, 147) stepped up in the last game against Middle Township, scoring two rushing TDs, another as a pass receiver and one more with a kickoff. Senior Jose Salome (5-7, 175) and freshman Mike Ordille (5-7, 165) have also gained yards carrying the ball. Seniors Hector Guerrero (6-1, 248) and Mike Brown (6-0, 226) anchor the offensive line. Senior Sonny Fraser (5-11, 206) and junior Drew DeMorat (6-0, 203) give Mainland one of the area’s best linebacker duos. DeMorat has 49 tackles, including 13 for losses, two recovered fumbles and one interception. Fraser has 33 tackles, eight for losses.
History: The Raiders won, 34-16, last season and have won two straight years. Mainland leads the all-time series, 26-19. Strangely, Mainland is 9-4 at Carey Stadium since the series resumed in 1993 and Ocean City has an 8-6 advantage at the Mustang Corral.
What’s at Stake: The winner will clinch a tie for the Independence Division championship – Mainland would win outright if it beats Ocean City and then beats Egg Harbor Township or if Oakcrest loses to Absegami. Ocean City could win outright if it beats Mainland and both Mainland and Oakcrest lose Thanksgiving eve. Mainland could still tie for the division title even if it loses Friday but wins against EHT. The West Jersey Football League does not use head-to-head results to break ties. Ocean City would be eliminated from the division race by losing tomorrow night. Ocean City last won a championship in 2001, Mainland in 2008. The game also has strong Group 4 playoff implications.
Special Event: Friday night is Parents Night at Carey Stadium. The parents of senior football players, band members and cheerleaders will be saluted.
Live Radio: The game can be heard on 106.3-The Shore.
Live Video Stream: Matt Ulmer and Bill Shallcross will stream live video of the game at www.OceanCitySports.com.
Next Up: Both teams should qualify for the NJSIAA Group 4 playoffs regardless of Friday’s result. The official pairings will be announced on Monday but CoastSportsToday,com will have them over the weekend.