Week 8 Preview: DeMatha vs Gonzaga

IMG_7920No way around it: This is a big one. A classic rivalry heated up with two of the best teams in the country, elite talent all over the field and a shot at a WCAC title. DeMatha vs Gonzaga takes place Saturday at 3 pm at Calvin Coolidge High School in D.C.

The Stags are in second place in the WCAC with a record of 3-1, the Eagles are one game behind at 2-1. Both trail Good Counsel, who has an undefeated conference record of 4-0.

DeMatha coach Elijah Brooks had a very busy week preparing for Gonzaga, but we caught up with him to get a preview of the Stags-Eagles matchup.

Saturday we face one of the most complete teams in the league. Gonzaga is as explosive as they come offensively. They really don’t have a weak position on the field. We can’t allow the big play whether it’s in the run or pass game. Defensively they are just as good. Their line and linebackers are very sound, and their secondary is arguably the best in the league. To give ourselves a chance to win we must play a disciplined game. When we have an opportunity to make a play, we must make it. There’s a good chance that we might see them again in a few weeks, but don’t get it misunderstood, both teams will fight tooth and nail to win this one. Go Stags!

It’s going to be a battle, but then again, DeMatha-Gonzaga usually is. We can’t wait to see! It looks like Gonzaga will be ready too.

Go Stags!


Week 7 Preview: DeMatha vs McNamara

DMflagIt’s the heart of WCAC season now and DeMatha can’t afford a let down after securing a big win last week over O’Connell. This week the Stags face a speedy McNamara squad, and even though the Mustangs have struggled, DeMatha coach Elijah Brooks knows his team must be prepared for a fight. DeMatha comes into the game 2-1 in the WCAC, good for second place in the league. McNamara has a 1-1 WCAC record, and last week lost a tough one to Good Counsel 45-21.

Here’s Coach Brooks’ game preview:

This game against McNamara is another important game as we head into the back stretch of the season. Don’t let their record fool you, they have a very explosive offense that we must contain. Their quarterback does a great job as a playmaker and they have receivers who can stretch the field. We have to keep the quarterback contained and force him into difficult throws. Offensively, it always starts with offensive line. They have been improving every week and we need another big week from them controlling the line of scrimmage. We have to be more disciplined as a team this week limiting the penalties. Another week in the WCAC, we have to come ready to play! Go Stags!



Week 6 Preview: DeMatha @ Bishop O’Connell

StagsDeMatha faces a huge test this weekend as they travel to Virginia to face Bishop O’Connell. Both teams have a 1-1 record in the WCAC, and the win will go a long way towards a playoff berth.

We caught up with Stags head coach Elijah Brooks to preview the game:

This a key game Saturday against Bishop O’Connell. We are playing a very good team who is coming into this game 5-1 only losing a close overtime game to St. John’s last week. Offensively, O’Connell creates mismatches and attacks defenses well with their spacing. We must be patient defensively with their zone read and when we have a chance to make a play we need to make it. Offensively we must do better than just 14 points. Our offense has worked hard this week on execution and I believe we will have a great showing Saturday. This is a huge game for playoff positioning and we have to come in ready to go. Go Stags!

DeMatha football knows how to compete in the WCAC, and competing in the WCAC means responding to pressure. Big game Saturday!


Week 6 WCAC Update: DeMatha In The Hunt

DeMatha suffered a tough loss last Friday to Good Counsel, but thanks to a overtime win against St. Johns two weeks ago, the Stags remain in a good spot for a WCAC playoff berth. Yes, another undefeated WCAC season is no longer a possibility, but the Stags defending their 2013 WCAC title remains very much in play.

Below are the WCAC standings through Week 5:

Screen shot 2014-10-08 at 1.03.04 PMBy looking at the standings, it’s pretty obvious how big this Saturday’s game against Bishop O’Connell is for DeMatha. The WCAC is always packed with elite talent, and this year is no different.

Stay with Inside DeMatha Football for much more and a preview of Saturday’s game against O’Connell.

Go Stags!

Week 6 Preview: DeMatha @ Good Counsel

In the last decade, the matchups between Good Counsel and DeMatha have played a huge part in deciding the champs of the Washington Catholic Area Conference. This year, some predicted the Falcons and Stags would slide back to the WCAC pack, opening the door for St. Johns and Gonzaga to take the title. Last week, Good Counsel and DeMatha showed different.

Screen shot 2014-09-27 at 11.41.20 AMDeMatha beat St. Johns 21-14 in overtime, and Good Counsel took down previous No. 1 ranked Gonzaga. Thus, the significance of Friday night’s Stags-Falcons showdown just got that much bigger.

There are stars on both sides of the ball for both teams. The Stags have playmaking talent like QB Beau English, RB Anthony McFarland and WR Darryl Turner Jr, not to mention power players on the defensive line and at linebacker. Good Counsel has a stout defense and a great running back in Jonathan Lee.

“We have to make sure we contain, especially because they have very fast running backs,” Good Counsel senior defensive end Darius Fullwood told the Washington Post. 

DMDefenseDeMatha vs Good Counsel with first place in the WCAC on the line. Just the way it should be.

Go Stags!

Week 5 Preview: DeMatha vs St. Johns

StagsAfter one of the more legendary seasons in the storied conference’s history last year, DeMatha finally gets the chance to defend their Washington Catholic Area Conference title Friday night against St. Johns. The Stags and the Cadets waged two tough battles last season, including the WCAC championship game, with both ending in DeMatha’s favor.

In fact, DeMatha comes into this game with a 19 year win streak. You read that right: 19 years. But this season, for the first time in some time, St. Johns comes in as the favorite. In the Washington Post ranks, the Cadets rank No. 4 while DeMatha comes in at No. 14. St. Johns is also undefeated so far this year while DeMatha has dropped two games to Pennsylvania powerhouses.

Screen shot 2014-09-16 at 12.33.47 PMStags head coach Elijah Brooks knows how tough it will be to beat St. Johns.

“The St. John’s front four is so fast and explosive and their secondary has some ballhawks, so we’re really going to have to minimize our mistakes,” Brooks told The Post. “We’re starting to get more comfortable as a unit and beginning to hit our stride. But if we’re playing behind the chains because of penalties or turnovers, we’re not going to have much of a shot.”

What Brooks also knows, and the WCAC will likely learn, is that even though DeMatha lost a lot of talent from its 2013 title team, the cupboard is still loaded. Sophomore running back Anthony McFarland is a game-changer, receivers Tino Ellis and Daryl Turner Jr. will make plays in space, and the DeMatha defense tackled better in their last game, a win against Eastern Christian Academy, than they have all season.

Screen shot 2014-09-26 at 8.58.08 AMSt. Johns has plenty of talent too. Running back Omar Garcia hits holes hard behind an experienced offensive line, and WR Scotty Washington recently committed to play at Wake Forest next season. It will take a complete effort from the Stags to slow down the Cadets.

All eyes will be on DeMatha tonight, just the way the Stags like it. The fall weather has arrived, and with it, WCAC football.

Week 4 Preview: DeMatha vs Eastern Christian Academy

DMflagThe most dangerous animal is a wounded animal, and that’s what will be on the field Friday night when DeMatha takes on Eastern Christian Academy. Both teams come into the game with just one win on the season, yet both are considered one of the best teams in the state of Maryland and boast a lot of talent on both sides of the ball.

ECAIDFB caught up with Elijah Brooks to get the Stags coach’s take on the ECA Honey Badgers. Seriously, that’s their mascot.

We are eager to get back on track this Friday against Eastern Christian. Don’t let their record fool you: ECA has played arguably the most difficult schedule in the country. For the second straight week we face an explosive offense that scores a lot. They do a great job of spreading the ball around in the hands of their playmakers. Defensively we have to get pressure on the quarterback, disrupting the timing of their plays. Their defensive front is dtrong and physical. We have to establish the run game and limit turnovers. We are focusing on starting fast and putting together a complete game this week. Go Stags!

To learn a bit more about the ECA Honey Badgers, check out this 2012 Sports Illustrated story here.