South Jersey HS football rankings after week 6

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Revamped Top 5 tops South Jersey Week 6 HS football rankings originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

There was a bit of a shake-up in the South Jersey standings this weekend.

Cedar Creek’s victory over Holy Spirit on Friday night is certainly a contender for the Upset of the Year. The Pirates haven’t been ranked by most of the pundits entering this season. Many had the Holy Spirit at the forefront of the region. But it wasn’t just the victory that was breathtaking. It was the final score. 7-6. The Pirates gave only one score against a really dynamic attack.

How good is that Cedar Creek defense? Really, how much? The unit has allowed just 14 points this season. It’s almost difficult to understand what’s really going on with a team of Pirates who went 3-5 in last year’s COVID-shortened season. But no matter how they do it, the Pirates have been fun to watch.

The victory propelled Cedar Creek to a well-deserved place in the top 5 of those rankings. In fact, there have been some top to bottom changes in the rankings this week – with the exception of St. Augustine. The Hermits rocked Lenape on Friday night. They have occupied the first place of our top 10 from the start.

But guess who they’re playing this weekend? They face off against a Holy Spirit hungry team that just lost to Cedar Creek. Thank you football gods.

1. Saint Augustine 5-1 (1)

It was a rare week that the Hermits did not play against one of the top ranked teams in the region. The Hermits overtook a rebuilding Lenape side by a score of 36-0. Running back Kyle Udoh posted big numbers again, rushing for 119 yards on 13 carries. The challenge continues next week St. Augustine faces the Holy Spirit in a game that could decide this year’s No.1 team in South Jersey.

2. Shawnee 4-1 (4)

Shawnee tallied 40 points for a third straight game this week in a 42-13 win over Williamstown. The Renegades have yet to score less than 38 points in a game (and that 38 was scored in a 38-0 win over Kingsway in Week 1). Matt Welsey continued to shine for Shawnee. The senior quarterback completed 11 of 13 passes for 216 yards and 2 touchdowns – 178 of those yards were for Avery Cohen, who had touchdown receptions of 64 and 74 yards in the game.

3. Ruisseau des Cèdres 5-0 (6)

This Cedar Creek defense must be seen to be understood. It is almost no exaggeration at this point to say that unity has been historically good. The defense again won the game this weekend for the Pirates against one of the best offensives in the state, as Cedar Creek stunned Holy Spirit – who entered the No. 2 ranked game in South Jersey – in a 7-6 thriller. JoJo Bermudez scored his team’s lone touchdown on a 35-yard screen pass in the first quarter. The defense was dominant throughout and forced two turnovers in the victory. The Pirates have allowed just 14 points this season and shut out four of their six opponents.

4. Holy Spirit 3-2 (2)

The Spartans’ loss to Cedar Creek on Friday night was their first loss in the state since falling to St. Joseph on November 2, 2019. As good as the Cedar Creek defense was on Friday night, the knockout in this one was final practice game – Cedar Creek held on for more than seven minutes to miss the time behind Ja’Quan Howard’s difficult run. Things won’t be any easier for the Holy Spirit next week when he travels to St. Augustine.

5. Millville 3-1 (3)

Millville had an extra week to study the gang after losing to St. Augustine on September 24. The Thunderbolts are back in action this week against Hammonton.

6. Saint Joseph 4-2 (5)

The Wildcats have beaten Rancocas Valley 52-7 this week and appear to be picking up pace after a streak in which they lost 2 of 3 games – awarded to two of the area’s top teams in Holy Spirit and St. Augustine. Jahmeer Cartagena caught two touchdowns in the RV win.

7. Winslow 5-1 (7)

Winslow has already won twice this year thanks to his late-game exploits. It wasn’t necessary this week in a 53-12 win over Pleasantville. Hamas Duren scored six touchdowns in the game, including a 54-yard strike to Trey Simmons in the first quarter to start the course.

8. Delsea 5-0 (NR)

Delsea have been one of South Jersey’s most consistent teams on both sides of the ball this year, and that continued on Friday night in a 31-7 victory over Hammonton. Luke Maxwell ran for 143 yards and two touchdowns and Jaedyn Stewart ran for 91 yards and one touchdown in the win.

9. Woodrow Wilson 2-2 (9)

Woodrow Wilson made a buy this week but will be back in action on October 9 against Timber Creek.

10. Township of Burlington 3-1 (NR)

After an early loss to Shawnee, Burlington Township smacked its previous two opponents by a combined score of 76-35. This week, the Falcons handed Pennsauken their first loss of the season in a 33-21 decision. Quarterback Gage Miller continues to impress and Anthony Johnson had four catches for 148 yards in the win, including a 79-yard touchdown in the first quarter. For any comments or questions about these rankings – or if you have a high school sports story that you think needs to be told, contact Chris Melchiorre at CMelchiorre11@yahoo.com.


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