Atholton (10-2 in 2012) at Marriotts Ridge (2-8)
When: Sept. 6
Regular season opener marks debut of John Swigart as new Raiders coach. Swigart, a former standout and assistant coach at Towson University, succeeds Kyle Schmitt who departed for Archbishop Spalding after four straight state playoff trips.

Hammond (5-5) at Long Reach (3-7)

When: Sept. 12
Matchup of first-year coaches in Jamie Willis (Long Reach) and Justin Carey (Hammond). Lightning won, 33-32, in team’s last meeting in 2011.

River Hill (14-0) at Atholton

When: Sept. 20
The definitive rivalry in Howard County football. The Raiders account for two of River Hill’s five defeats since 2009, but the Hawks won, 35-27, in last year’s Class 3A East Region finals.

Atholton at Long Reach

When: Sept. 27
Lightning handed Atholton its lone regular season loss (13-12) last season. Raiders are 36-4 over the past four regular seasons.

Atholton at Reservoir (6-5)

When: Nov. 1
Raiders ended Reservoir’s first playoff run with a thrilling 21-20 win in 3A East semifinals last year. Atholton also won close, 28-25, during regular season.