By Matt Smith
John Harrar stood off to the side at practice Tuesday afternoon sporting a Strath Haven coat. If you didn’t know him, you might assume he was a coach.
As his teammates ended the workday with running drills, Harrar offered high-fives and words of encouragement.
The 6-9, 230-pound senior defensive end/tight end was resting a sore ankle. He returned to practice Wednesday and vowed to be 100 percent ready for the big game.
“I have to be,” he said.
Friday, Harrar and the Panthers host undefeated Springfield, the No. 1 team in the county. The Cougars are feeling confident after last week’s dramatic overtime win at Ridley. It was the first time in 22 years that Springfield has defeated Ridley.
So the Panthers get their shot to knock down one of two remaining unbeatens in the Central League. While Springfield is the favorite, Strath Haven is no pushover. For the first time in several years, the Panthers have a team that many feel can compete with the league’s best.