Concord, Bedford week’s best NH high school football game

If you want to see some smash-mouth high school football, Bedford is the place to be Friday night.

This matchup between the host Bulldogs (6-0) and visiting Concord Crimson Tide (5-1) may be one of the best games on the season schedule, never mind this week.

It’s a big game for both teams, which take just as much pride in their defenses as they do offenses.

A Bedford win locks up a spot in the North Conference title game. More importantly, that game would be on the Bulldogs’ home turf.

For Concord it’s a matter of survival. If the Crimson Tide loses to Bedford and Manchester Memorial is victorious at home against Spaulding, the Crusaders would jump Concord in the standings with two games remaining in the season.

Both Memorial and Concord would be 5-2 in that scenario, with the Crusaders holding a head-to-head edge courtesy of their 14-13 win over the Crimson Tide on Oct. 3.

Of course, Concord still controls its own fate. All it has to do is go into Bedford and beat Mike Vailas and the Bulldogs.

It’s a tall order for Division I’s defending champion.

Concord has found itself in some tough situations all season – even against the lesser opponents it should handle with relative ease (see Winnacunnet, Manchester Central and Spaulding). Four of the Crimson Tide’s five wins came after trailing the game in the fourth quarter.

They cannot expect to get behind these Bulldogs heading into the fourth quarter and rally for a win.

It just isn’t going to happen.

Pick six

Bedford 24, Concord 14: No fourth-quarter comeback for the Crimson Tide against Vailas and the Bulldogs.

Alvirne 24, Londonderry 21: This is 1B for Game of the Week alongside the Bedford-Concord matchup. Jack Mahoney leads the Broncos ground game to victory.

Nashua South 35, Keene 7: The Panthers get a struggling group of Blackbirds at just the right time.

Salem 35, Merrimack 21: The Tomahawks have taken a step up from last season, but their in Division I’s best conference with a group of Blue Devils that have taken a giant leap from last fall.

Hollis Brookline 21, ConVal 0: The Cavaliers’ offense will have more of a say this week, but their defense still carries the load. Another shutout for HB.

Nashua North 28, Bishop Guertin 21: The Titans win the battle of teams with preseason promise that fell flat. That being said, this looks to be an exciting and highly-entertaining game.

LAST WEEK: 6-0.

OVERALL: 27-9.

George Scione can be reached at 594-6520 or gscione@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Scione on Twitter (@Telegraph_BigG).