You don't have to say much more. Alden versus Depew. No. 1 versus No. 2.
The Class B East rivals meet Friday night for the top spot in their division and the right to be called the best small school in Western New York - again.
Alden won two close, hard-hitting, pad-popping games from Depew last year, a regular-season, 14-13 victory at Depew and a 12-0 win in the Class B championship at Ralph Wilson Stadium. They were Depew's only losses of the season.
What stands out to Depew coach Brian Wilson?
"The physicality of it," he said. "You know you're in for 48 minutes of hard-hitting, nonstop football. You better have your socks pulled up because it's going to be quite a challenge. Every second you have to be ready and be at your best."
The teams, both 4-0, meet at 7 p.m. in Alden's homecoming, and junior quarterback Brian Stoldt expects the same kind of battle.
"I just remember two very physical games," said Stoldt, who started last year as a sophomore. "The first one went right down to the wire, and even the second one down to the end. You had to work for everything you got in those games so I'm looking forward to getting another shot at it."
Depew will be trying to beat Alden for the first time since 2007, a season that ended with Depew winning the Class B title at The Ralph. Alden's four-game win streak against the Wildcats also includes victories in Week One of 2008 (14-6 at Depew) and in the 2009 quarterfinals at Depew (25-13).
For both meetings last year, the teams held the same spots in The Buffalo News poll. Alden, which has won two straight Section VI Class B titles, maintained its No. 1 spot through those games and continues to be on top. The Bulldogs have won 24 straight games against Western New York opponents, with their last loss coming to Cheektowaga, 27-13, in the 2009 Class B final.
A matchup that has been marked by last year's closeness and intensity might come down to Alden's ability to defend what has been a multifaceted Wildcat attack.
Depew has scored the most points in Western New York with 191 - 25 more than second-place Orchard Park, the No. 1 large school. The Wildcats have weapons out of the backfield in senior Brian Rybak (two TDs rushing, two TDs receiving) and sophomore Rodney Turner, who has 10 rushing touchdowns, four of which are for more than 40 yards. Junior Anthony Buono has thrived in his first year at quarterback with four rushing touchdowns and four passing scores (the other two of which went to senior Derrick Sekuterski).
"We challenged our football team right out of the gate - the analogy we've used is to put our foot on the gas and keep it going," Wilson said. "We were very excited when Anthony Buono came up from JV, we haven't missed a beat there. We have Rodney and Brian running the ball, we've gotten [senior] Nathaniel Hyman into it, [senior] Brandon Atlas, our fullback, had a 100-yard game. We have three receivers in Derrick Sekuterski, [junior] Cody Penner, [junior] Nick Yelich our tight end, along with Brian Rybak playing from the flanker position. We can catch the ball and get down the field whether we throw it short or long."
Alden is notoriously stingy on defense, and its offense has executed efficiently as it has the last few years under the level-headed leadership and arm of Stoldt (four passing TDs, two rushing TDs) and the running of senior Corey Barczykowski. The 6-2, 195-pounder has 10 touchdowns as he has continued his great rushing performances from last season, when he was forced into the featured back spot when dangerous senior Corey Patterson was injured for most of the second half of the season.
"[Barczykowski] has gotten bigger and stronger and faster, he's one of the top players in Class B," Alden coach Dick Diminuco said. "And [Stoldt] has been the face of our program. He's a tremendous leader, the greatest I've been around in 38 years."