Role reversal: La Salle overtakes Washington for City Title

In the first rematch of the Public League vs. the Catholic since 1979, George Washington High School Eagles, with an impressive record of 10-1, defeated the heavily favored La Salle College High School Explorers, 23-14, to claim the AAAA City Championship Title. The big cameras and film crews were noticeably present.

Lest you think you’ve fallen into a time warp I’ll be quick to point out that that was last year. This year it was a role reversal with a different score, and La Salle lay claim to the City Title, defeating Washington, 31-20.

Game conditions this year were much better than they were last year, although wind was a factor in both games. This year’s game day wasn’t as cold as it was in previous years.

Washington vs. La Salle vs. The Wind

The big man can really get up there. Washington's heavily recruited offensive/defensive lineman Sharrif Floyd, who accounted for a team high seven tackles, comes awfully close to blocking a pass t
(The big man can really get up there. Washington's heavily recruited offensive/defensive lineman Sharrif Floyd, who accounted for a team high seven tackles, comes awfully close to blocking a pass t)

As happens in most sporting events when teams are fairly matched, there’s an ebb and flow. Weather is always a factor in outdoor games, and it’s not always kind. Heavy rain, on artificial turf doesn’t seem to hurt the run game in football, but it can dramatically affect the passing game.

Wind is almost always the most unforgiving condition. It can be swirling, as it often is in a stadium with high walls, and there can be a cross wind in open fields. More often than not the wind moves downfield; you either have an advantage with the wind at your back, or the other team has it. Imagine a game where teams didn’t switch the directions in which they moved.

Fans make all the difference

Washington's fans were warmed by the afternoon sun. La Salle's fans, seated mostly in the shade on the opposite side of the field, were probably a bit chilly.
(Washington's fans were warmed by the afternoon sun. La Salle's fans, seated mostly in the shade on the opposite side of the field, were probably a bit chilly.)

Traditionally the Catholic League games attract far more fans than do those played in the Public League. La Salle’s fans, this year seated on the home side of the field, filled the stands. Washington had lots of seats available in the bright sunlight. It’s still disappointing to not see the stands filled with fans on both sides.

The Washington High School Band was easily heard, despite its limited number of members.
(The Washington High School Band was easily heard, despite its limited number of members.)

It was a good game played for the AAAA City Championship, with Washington putting on a surge near the end that had Eagles fans hoping and cheering until the final minutes ticked away. When 00:00 showed on the clock, the Public League’s football season ended, Gratz and Bok having already lost to their Catholic League rivals in the AAA and AA divisions.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.