North Gaston (1-0) at East Rutherford (1-0)
It took a little time to get going, but East Rutherford came away with a 34-14 win over South Stanly last Friday.
Jordan Harris (154 yards receiving) Demetrius Mauney (130 yards rushing) & Cameron Simmons (237 yards passing) all stood out in the victory.
East will host North Gaston after they walloped East Gaston 69-29 last Friday. Isaiah McNeil & Kareem Kennedy rushed for over 400 yards combined in the win.
North Gaston's duo is going to be tough to defend in the option offense, but they aren't deep up front. East should still be the more athletic team...ER 38-20.‑
Chase (0-1) at Cherryville (1-0)
There was definitely a spark of enthusiasm in the Chase community this past Friday. I thought I was in West Lincoln for a moment as Chase now has a cannon every time they score points or run through the banner before the start of this year's home games.
Despite not having much scrimmage time, they nearly beat Polk County before falling in the final minute, 31-28.
Polk's experience, just in knowing themselves too well & the coach they play for has his kids to believe. Chase showed that they are doing the same thing this year. Chase is still finding themselves.
After Keith Godfrey blocked a field goal & Elijah Guest took it to the house, Chase changed the momentum & eventually went up by 12 in the third quarter.
Polk County Coach Bruce Ollis might have said it best about Chase's field goal block before the half. "It wasn't the knife in the heart, but it certainly was a pretty deep flesh wound."
Unfortunately, Polk overcame that deficit. Despite the loss, Chase is already a better team this season. If they can avoid the injury bug & continue to believe in each other, they have a chance to be pretty decent this year.
The Trojans now face a good defense & the arm of Dylan Harden. Just like Mike Cheek did at R-S Central in 2004, Chase Coach Cort Radford gets his very first win in Gaston County this Friday night. Chase 36-20.
Patton (0-1) at R-S Central (0-1)
The good news is that they had over 160 yards rushing, but less than 200 yards offense overall. Defensively, they played well enough, but 5 turnovers hindered any sort of chance at winning last Friday in a 22-7 loss to McDowell.
Noah Hudgins was the only Hilltopper to find the endzone as C.J. Hannon rushed for over 100 yards. Bryson Jarrell, Chase & Gage McSwain each had over 7 tackles last Friday. Cole Garner recovered a fumble & Marlin Francis had an interception.
The Hilltoppers face Patton this Friday at home. Patton allowed over 500 yards offense last Friday & gained under 70 against a stout Huss. Patton plays option style as well and this is a winnable game for the Hilltoppers. It won't be easy. R-S 20-16.
Nomi McMullens accounted for all 5 touchdowns in Thomas Jefferson's 34-27 comeback win against an upstart North Lincoln last Friday. Ethan Jackson had 13 tackles & Cody Maxwell rushed for 66 yards. Shemar Petty also caught a touchdown pass in the win. That's a big win for TJCA since North Lincoln has a new coach in Nick Bazzle. Bazzle has been successful everywhere he has went. Despite giving up 330 yards of offense, Thomas Jefferson had 2 sacks & forced 4 turnovers, including a 60-yard interception return by McMullens for a touchdown to put it away.
The Gryphons will have a bye Friday, but goes to Chatham Central on August 31.
Racing Observations: NASCAR wants to know why they are falling backwards. Two more things stuck out at Bristol. One, Bristol still hasn't been fixed. Don't get me wrong, the racing wasn't terrible, but does Bristol ever get back to the way it used to be?
And second, when your drivers have a chance to show personality during driver intros, 98% of them came to a microphone & showed little personality.
Yes, Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer & Kyle Busch do have a personality, but Busch was the only one of this bunch to really stand out. Chase Elliott's song choice stood out & David Ragan probably rounded out the top three because it wasn't generic.
Finally, I don't know the condition of Robert Wickens other than he had orthopedic injuries after an awful IndyCar crash at Pocono Sunday. My thoughts & prayers go out to him in his recovery.