20 vs. 1 -- If you’re among those football fans that believe experience matters, Cumberland Valley is making its 20th appearance in a District 3 title game, Manheim Twp. its first. In fact, the Streaks can become the first crew from Lancaster County to win a district title in the biggest class.
285.2 vs. 91.5 -- By now you’ve heard that Cumberland Valley’s success is rooting in its Wing-T offensive scheme. It’s a run-heavy offense based on misdirection and good old-fashioned horsepower. That first number is CV’s average rushing total per contest. The second is what the grizzled Manheim Twp. defense is allowing per game. Which club gets closer to its number likely wins this engaging dust up. Honestly, it’s that simple.
1K Club -- Center stage in the “worth the price of admission” chapter is the battle between Cumberland Valley RB Jake Palmer and Streaks counterpart Grayson Sallade. Both are mirror images as standout two-way players. Sallade, an LB hybrid on defense, has skirted for 1,191 yards and 16 touchdowns. Palmer, one of three capable RBs in CV’s backfield with Galen Witmer and Cole McCoy, has picked up 1,214 rushing yards and 12 scores. These two will impact the next 48 minutes at Hersheypark Stadium.
2 - Uniform No. of Cumberland Valley WR-DB Charlie Katshir. It’s not easy keeping track of the Penn State recruit. But even marking the versatile athlete doesn’t guarantee success. Katshir leads the Eagles with 30 receptions, added 340 rushing yards and has picked off four passes. He’s also among the most lethal return men in the state, so he’s one to watch.
64.5 -- Completion percentage for Manheim Twp. QB Luke Emge. The former Fleetwood standout is angling to get the Blue Streaks to the top of the District 3 mountain before he jets off to Harvard. And, the signal caller has the required skill set to do it. Although lucky to have proven assets Rece Bender, Xavier Roman and Brett Benjamin on the outside, Emge guides this offense with a certain flair. It has everything to due with trusting his teammates and stepping in with big plays when challenged. Emge and the Streaks have been leaning toward this opportunity since last season.
The pick: We mentioned a handful of areas that could persuade prognosticators to punch Manheim Twp.’s ticket. The Streaks took their only setback to Governor Mifflin in week 3 to heart and quickly moved on. They earned their shot. But it will take MT’s best game to derail the 13-time District 3 champion. While it’s difficult to simulate the Eagles’ approach, it’s even worse when you’re face to face.
Cumberland Valley 21, Manheim Twp. 17