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FairfaxWarhawks host Seahawks in semis

Warhawks host Seahawks in semis

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This weekend, the Madison Warhawks are the lone high-school football team from the Sun Gazette’s coverage areas still competing in the playoffs.

The top seed and defending champion Warhawks (10-1) host the fifth-seeded South Lakes Seahawks (6-5) in a semifinal game of the 6D North Region tournament, at 7 p.m. Friday night, Nov. 19. Madison, which has won 10 straight games (four by shutouts), will be a heavy favorite.

The Warhawks defeated South Lakes, 34-6, in regular-season Concorde District action four weeks ago. In that game, Madison took control early, leading 14-0 after one quarter and 23-0 at halftime. Senior runningback Alex Jreige ran for two touchdowns in the triumph, and senior quarterback Connor Barry and John Kustra ran for one each. Madison rushed for 187 yards and Barry threw for 78.

Jreige has run for well more than 3,000 yards during his four- year varsity career, three as a starter, for Madison, including 1,284 with 24 touchdowns this season. Those totals include a career high 202 yards and four TDs in a regular-season win over Marshall.


“Alex has great vision, power and balance,” Madison head coach Justin Counts said.

With Jreige running the ball and a physical offensive line of Tyler Whittle, Ciaran Sullivan, Endrees Noory, Grant Boody and Kevin Gaston, the Warhawks have controlled many of their games with a potent ground attack. Boody and Sullivan are the only two returners on that offensive line from last season.

“Cody Canard is our offensive-line coach and he does a great job preparing the guys to know their assignments, for what to expect from defenses and making adjustments during games,” Counts said. “It’s a smart group.”

The Madison defense held the Seahawks to 174 total yards and limited South Lakes’ potent passing attack in that win. That victory clinched a second straight Concorde District title for the Warhawks.

South Lakes scored 36 points in each of its past two games, including a 36-21 first-round playoff victory over the No. 4-seed and host Yorktown Patriots. In its six wins, the Seahawks averaged 36 points per game, but allowed a season-high 65 in a loss to Lake Braddock and 54 in a setback to Robinson.

“South Lakes has a couple of players who scare you all the time,” Counts said. “We did a good job tackling the first time we played them, and got a lot of guys to the ball. They score a lot of points, and we know what they are capable of.”

 Madison’s defense through 11 games has been led by the steady play of Austin Wysocki, Ryan Salvosa, Kevin Chadwick, John Hurley, Kyle Porter under defensive coordinator Ray Gordon.

“We hang our hats on our defense,” Counts said.

If Madison defeats South Lakes, the Warhawks will have the opportunity to win their fourth region championships and second straight for the first time in program history, then advance to the Virginia High School Class 6 state tournament.

The No. 2-seed Centreville Wildcats (9-2) host the Westfield Bulldogs (6-5) in the other region semifinal at the same time and date. Madison defeated both teams during the regular season.

NOTES: Madison is playing in a region-tournament semifinal for the sixth straight season . . . The Warhawks have won four straight region-playoff games over two seasons – 3-0 last season and 1-0 so far this fall.

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