Dominant dawgs

Aces Football adds a big win to their season after crushing Harriton.

Graphic by Calleigh Newbert ’26

The Aces traveled to Harriton high school to play in one of the Central League’s  most notorious rivalries. Both Lower Merion and Harriton had losing records entering the game and were looking to bounce back after 20 point losses. Fans flooded the bleachers to see the Aces defense absolutely dominate the Rams offense in a game that was in LM’s control from the start. The Aces’ offense also took care of business in the win, but it was really their defense that kept the game a blowout all night. 

One of the main concerns entering the game was whether or not the Aces were going to stop Matt Krebbs, Harriton’s star wideout. It was imperative for the Aces to contain the senior receiver, who is arguably the best player on the Rams roster. Krebbs ended the game with only seven catches for 51 yards, with most of his production coming when the game was out of reach. In retrospect, the Rams should’ve made a better effort to give Krebbs more touches, as they didn’t repeatedly target him until the fourth quarter. Yet most of the credit lies, not on the Ram’s questionable playcalling, but with the Aces for stopping the receiver. Their secondary did an outstanding job of containing him throughout the game.

Another key contributor for the Aces defense was their front seven. The defensive line made multiple stops in the backfield for the first time all season. Aidan Fliszar ’23 set the tone with a sack on the third play of the game, while Jack Diamondstein ’24 kept the momentum going with a fumble recovery in the second half. Typically, it’s been the Aces defensive line that fills the gaps for their linebackers to make the plays, but tonight the defensive line made a ton of plays themselves. That’s not to say that the Aces’ linebackers didn’t show out too. Their middle-linebacker Andrew Cook ’24 was all over the field. Whether he was in coverage, stopping the run, or rushing from the defensive end position, Cook was making an impact. He finished with six tackles, a forced fumble, and some serious pass rushes towards the end of the game.

LM’s defense managed to prevent big plays, while their offense converted them. The Rams only 20-plus yard gain came on a 27 yard pass to Marquis Kubish. The play, which included a remarkable seven second scramble by Harriton quarterback Logan Rothberg, was by far their longest of the night. As a result, the Rams were forced to move the chains over the course of long drives. On the other hand, LM’s offense was continuously producing explosive plays. A 49 yard pass to Sam Zheng ’23, a 51 yard pass to Declan Mack ’24, and a 39 yard run by Mekhai Smith ’24 were scores that gave the Aces an early lead in the blowout win. 

All three levels of the Aces defense worked to contain Matt Krebbs, stop the run, and prevent big plays in what was a dominant performance. Their 34 points on offense, in addition to the shutdown defensive effort made it impossible for Harriton to even compete. The Aces now have a chance to make a run for the Central League Playoffs if they can continue to perform like this in their final stretch of games. 

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