HARTSDALE, N.Y. – The Woodlands High School football team will host its first playoff game in more than two decades when it faces Bronxville High School on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. in the first round of the Section 1 Class C playoffs.
The Falcons (7-0) and Broncos (4-3) met in week one and Woodlands earned a 40-32 win. But a lot has changed in the seven weeks since that day.
Woodlands’s defense has improved dramatically since the season opener and has not allowed more than 19 points in the last six games. The Falcons have also defeated two playoff teams in the last two weeks in Dobbs Ferry and Tuckahoe high schools by 33 and 34 points, respectively.
The Falcons’ 40-point performance in week one also proved not to be a fluke as they have averaged more than 40 points per game this season. Their lowest total was 32 points against Valhalla in week three.
Junior running back Tyrone Barber has developed into a sensation for Woodlands this season. He accounted for more than 400 yards of total offense and five touchdowns in Woodlands’ season ending win against Tuckahoe. Barber has the most kickoff returns for touchdowns in Section 1 and he added returns of 99 and 75 yards against the Tigers.
But Bronxville will not go quietly in this game. The return of Luke Marrone, who broke two bones in his arm in the preseason, has been a boost to the Broncos.
Marrone came back strong in week six against Tuckahoe as he caught the lone touchdown in the Broncos’ 7-0 win and made several defensive plays against the Tigers. He also rushed for a touchdown in Bronxville’s final regular season game against Dobbs Ferry.
The key for Bronxville will be to slow down Woodlands’ offense, a task that no team has successfully accomplished so far this season. If Woodlands jumps out to an early lead, it could be too much for Bronxville to overcome. But if the Broncos can keep the score close in the early going, then they could pull off the upset.
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