5/21: Rhinos at Harrisburg Sharks
The Hanover Rhinos look to close the 2016 season on a two-game winning streak, as they travel up US-15 North to take on the AFA North Division Champions, the Harrisburg Sharks.
Plenty is on the line for Harrisburg, as they battle for the top playoff seed in the AFA Northern Conference.
WHEN & WHERE: Saturday at 1:00 PM, following pre-game ceremony for Joshua Potts, Steelton-Highspire Football Field, South 6th St & Spruce St, Steelton, PA 17113.
WEATHER FORECAST: 59 degrees and rainy. Precipitation: 80%. Humidity: 67%. Wind: 9 MPH.
RHINOS IN SEASON FINALES: 4-0, including a 28-6 upset of the Maryland Phantoms in 2012.
SERIES HISTORY: Harrisburg leads 3-0. The Sharks have outscored the Rhinos 99-7.
LAST MEETING: The Rhinos and Sharks played to a scoreless draw after 1 quarter in week 6. Over the final 3 quarters, Clayton McNair ran for 159 yards, and Harrisburg outscored the Rhinos 36-0. Jeremy Renoll set a single-game club record for Hanover with 15 tackles, while Richard Settle added 12 stops, and Jack Isennock set a career-high with 10 stops and 1 interception.
The Rhinos were shutout for the second time on the year, while Howard Holton recorded the first safety of the year for the Sharks.
REMEMBERING POTTS: Prior to the 1:00 kick-off, the Sharks will host a ceremony on the field honoring their former defensive back Joshua Potts.
Potts passed away at the age of 26 on January 6, 2016.
PLAYOFF SCENARIO: To clinch the #1 seed in the Northern Conference, Harrisburg needs to win and have the Virginia Chargers win or tie against the Maryland Phantoms Saturday night at Woodgrove High School in Virginia. Harrisburg would be the #2 seed if the Phantoms win.
RHINOS’ OUTLOOK: When the Hanover Rhinos are in need of a record-buster, who do they call? Richard Settle. Settle’s 55-yard leap-and-dash to the end zone on the first play of the second half last week broke the Rhinos’ club-record 301:59 scoreless streak. Settle also tied the club record with 15 tackles in the game. The week before, he set the club’s single-game fumble recovery record, with 4. Settle is 3rd in the AFA in tackles, with 81.
The league’s leading tackler, Jeremy Renoll, will set his sights on 100 tackles, and try to wrap up the tackle title. Renoll has 95 tackles on the season. Franklin County’s Doug Kilpatrick trails Renoll by 7 tackles entering the final week.
On offense, quarterback Alex Isennock set career-highs with 9 completions and 111 yards. He only threw the ball 3 times after the skies opened up at the half, but completed two of them, both at enormous moments. Isennock completed a fourth-down pass to DeAnte Weldon, then, a few snaps later, he completed his first career touchdown pass when he threaded the needle to Adrian Acevedo.
Jack Isennock’s fourth quarter pick-six was the first non-offensive touchdown for the Rhinos on the season.
SCOUTING THE SHARKS: Harrisburg’s 20-game win-streak was snapped at the Maryland Phantoms in week 8, but they have rebounded nicely with two road wins.
The Sharks clinched their third straight AFA North Division title with a 41-39 win at York in week 9. Trailing 18-7 at the half, the Sharks went on a 34-14 run for the comeback victory.
Last week, the Sharks kept their hopes alive for the #1-seed in the conference when Mike DeTemple found Kevin Porter for the game-winning 35-yard touchdown pass in overtime at Carroll County, lifting Harrisburg to the 20-14 win.