Posted: 2:36 pm Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Playoff Primer 2011: Dwyer’s swarming defense hosts Northeast 

By Jeff Greer

There are six playoff games on Friday involving teams from our area. In the buildup to the games, we’ll break down every matchup.

Dwyer’s defense continues to carry the Panthers with its lightning speed and thunderous hits. Dwyer will go as far as its fantastic defense can take it. Northeast does have some speedy athletes, but not enough to overwhelm or even match up well with Dwyer’s defense. On offense, as long as it limits the turnovers, Dwyer should be fine.

Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. General admission is $8; reserved seating is $9.

NORTHEAST AT DWYER

NORTHEAST
Record: 8-3
In the regional quarters: Defeated Royal Palm Beach 14-13
Average points for/against: 25.7/17.4
Yards gained per game: N/A
Players to watch: QB Brandon Thompson (52.6% completion rate, 15 TDs, 7 INTs), WR Stacey Coley (409 receiving yards, 6 TDs), RB Jamal Wallace (631 rushing yards, 5 TDs)

DWYER
Record: 10-1
In the regional quarters: Defeated Ely 28-0
Average points for/against: 34.4/6.1
Yards gained per game: 150 rush/113.2 pass
Players to watch: QB Faton Bauta (54.2% completion rate, 15 TDs, 5 INTs, 424 rushing yards, 6 TDs), WR Clint Stephens (479 receiving yards, 7 TDs), DL Mike Minns, DE Malik Brown, S Julian Whigham

That 24-10 loss to Glades Central was a long, long time ago, but Dwyer has only played one truly formidable opponent since then (Seminole Ridge, with all due respect to Royal Palm Beach and Atlantic). The Panthers have coasted through most of the season, and they’ll keep coasting through this game. As long as their defense shows up, they’ll win comfortably. The big question is: Can the offense perform against high-level opponents? That question will be examined and answered next week, when Dwyer would play either St. Thomas Aquinas or Cooper City. But on Friday, while Northeast does have some playmakers, Dwyer should be able to cruise to a win.