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RIVALRY GAME: GECKOS VS FRIARS

The unbeaten GW Geckos will clash against the streaking FD Friars in the rivalry game of the week for their first meeting of 2014.

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By Robert Balajadia

The old school rivalry between the GW Geckos and FD Friars will play out Friday night in the teams first meeting of the 2014 season.

The upstart JFK Islanders suffered their first loss to the Geckos, who have displayed dominance this season going undefeated (4-0) through their first four games. The Friars are holding their own at (4-1) with their only loss coming in the first game of the season against the Islanders as both teams are riding a four-game win streak.

Geckos Stand Atop IIAAG

Since going 2-0 the Geckos appeared to just be another strong team in an eventful 2014 season. After their last two games where they ended the impressive Islanders undefeated start to the season and also proved they can win in clutch situations by scoring two touchdowns in the final quarter to beat the still winless Guam High Panthers.

In preparation for the week head coach Ryan Rios said that his team is going to hit the ground running, literally. The Geckos passing attack has functioned well for majority of the season and their running game has really come alive in the past weeks.

Geckos running back Hank Sablan runs angry and that’s bad news for every defense who faces him. His strong season has made him a candidate for offensive MVP. Sablan is not afraid of contact and has gained Rios’ trust on important downs where a conversion must be made.

The Geckos are also stout on defense led by Kelvin “Wolfgang” Hocog allowing the fewest points in the league at 6.5, including a shutout of the Islanders in their 14-0 win.

The game will be played at the Hal’s Angel field, which has served as the FD Friar home for the past couple of home games.

Friars Potent Run Game

The most important takeaway from the FD Friars win over the Okkodo Bulldogs has to be on the defensive end where they came up strong to deny the Okkodo Bulldogs a chance to tie the game in the closing minutes of the game.

Their strongest suit has been their running game behind a bolstering backfield who can score touchdowns on any given possession. During their last meeting in 2013, senior running back Zavier Damian ran wild to help FD capture a 27-14 win. The Geckos are looking to prevent that from happening two years in a row.

Freshman De’Aundre Cruz has been the leagues most consistent runner having missed only one game this season due to a flu. When Cruz does suit up, he has the ability to find holes in the defense combined with the speed to catch defenders off guard. The Friars will undoubtedly give Cruz his carries, but their other back Christian Duenas has proven to be equally dangerous.

Could this turn into a quarterback battle? Geckos Brenden Santos will get plenty of opportunities throw the ball and Friars QB Jujuan King is slowly getting comfortable with the offense so whomever can convert on passing downs may give their team a definitive edge.

Game time is 7 pm at the Angels field!

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