Doug Luke admitted earlier this week that he still had a lot of questions.
Luke’s Cambridge football team is undefeated heading into Friday’s 7 p.m. Class D South showdown at backyard rival Greenwich.
However, the Indians have not been challenged in four all-too-easy victories, outscoring those opponents by a combined total of 187-6. Cambridge is 2-0 in the division, 5-0 overall, including a forfeit win over Bishop Gibbons.
Still, Luke said, “Until we get on the field and play (Greenwich), we’re still an unknown. We haven’t faced anybody who’s really competitive. Here we are, Week 6 and we still have too many question marks. It’s hard to tell how good we are.”
So the Witches (1-1, 4-1) could serve as Cambridge’s first test of the season. Greenwich is coming off their first loss of the season, a 37-16 setback at Rensselaer last week.
That loss puts the Witches in a tough spot — they need a win to stay in the race for one of only two playoff spots in Class D South. Cambridge and Rensselaer are both 2-0.
“We painted ourselves into a real corner,” Greenwich head coach Brandon Linnett said. “We’ve got to win to keep our sectional hopes alive. Rensselaer is very good, not taking anything away from them, but we didn’t play anywhere near our capability.”
Luke said, “Greenwich is a better team than what they showed the other night.”
The Witches did get 166 rushing yards and two touchdowns from John Barnes, but senior quarterback Jake Jennings struggled against a very athletic Rams defense. Barnes has rushed for 779 yards and scored 13 touchdowns this season, while Jennings has passed for 574 yards and nine scores.
Cambridge, ranked No. 6 in the state this week, continues to use the uptempo, no-huddle rushing attack it rode to the state semifinals last year. However, instead of a 1-2 punch like Skyler Saunders and Aaron Mulready last year, the Indians have a go-to back in senior Matt Parmenter. Parmenter has rushed for 759 yards and scored 17 touchdowns in four games this season, including five touchdowns in last week’s 47-0 rout of Catholic Central.
Sophomore Ethan English hasn’t needed to air the ball out much this season, but he has completed 53 percent of his passes for 471 yards and one touchdown.
Greenwich leads the rivalry series 40-31-2, but Cambridge has won nine straight; the Witches last beat the Indians in 1998. This is their first meeting since 2009.
“We’ll have to play a full game and run the ball well,” Luke said. “We want to play at a faster tempo than they want.”
“You’re not going to outsmart them, you’ve got to outplay them,” Linnett said of Cambridge. “We have to go out and play four quarters and take it; they’re not going to give it to you. Very rarely will they beat themselves.”