First place battles, homecomings under the lights

Friday, September 30, 2011
Rocket senior center Eli Perryman (59), followed by quarterback Brooks Lamb (14), fullback Richie Smith (41), and running back Zach Ray (10) line up prior to scoring versus Collinwood earlier in the season. The Rocket offense put up 50 points versus the Bulldogs last week, but half of that output will probably mean a win over Eagleville this Friday night at the "Rock" in Chapel Hill. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

You have to be rooting for the Cornersville Bulldogs this week to pick up win number one on the year as head coach Ray Stocstill's squad heads into Week 6 full steam ahead after an incredible performance last week in their 51-40 shootout loss to inter-county rival Forrest in Frog Bottom.

Cornersville (0-5, 0-2) will host Region 6A opponent Loretto (1-4, 0-2) in one of two homecoming events taking place in the county this Friday night under the lights.

The Dawgs have defeated the Mustangs in both meetings since realignment two years ago and if Cornersville running back Noah Rubbo can even come close to his legendary performance last week versus the Rockets, Stocstill's gallant bunch will get the much needed, hard earned win when they stomp the equines 24-3.

Tiger seniors Justin Scarbrough (55), Trevor Irizarry (3), J.B. Reese (15), and Quan Greer (12) head to the field as captains last week before MCHS shellacked the Raiders 35-14. This week, all the seniors will celebrate homecoming before the game versus Fairview and hopefully, all of Lewisburg will be celebrating first place after the game.

At Preston Hopkins Field in Lewisburg this week, old classmates will gather for the Tiger homecoming gala and the expected huge throng of classmates and visitors will witness the battle for region supremacy.

MCHS head coach Tom Turchetta is looking for all the Lewisburg fans to come to field before the game to form a human tunnel as they run onto the turf to take on the fast and furious Fairview Yellow Jackets (6-0, 4-0), ranked number three in this week's Associated Press's 3A Top Ten poll.

The Tigers (4-1, 3-0), who made the 4A AP Poll for the first time this season at number ten, have dropped both match-ups since realignment to the Yellow Jackets, including a 17-point loss last year in Williamson County.

Fairview has a prolific offensive attack, outscoring their opponents 227-78, and has exactly one hundred points more than the Tigers this season, who have a margin of 127-55 in their games so far.

Limiting the Fairview scoring attack will be the key to victory this week and senior Davey Maddox and the rest of his solid cohorts on the defensive side of the ball will have a big say in who wins this one.

Also having a say on the outcome will be MCHS stalwart running back Trevor Irizarry, whose explosiveness has been the most pleasant surprise of the season at the "Hop".

Look for Maddox and his hard hitters to corral the Jackets to 24 points, while Irizarry and his running mates put up 31 as the Tigers take over the top spot.

Over at the "Rock" in Chapel Hill, first place will also be on the line as the Forrest Rockets (4-1, 1-0) take on the undefeated and number eight-ranked 1A Eagleville Eagles (6-0, 2-0).

The Rockets are coming off a huge emotional win in Cornersville last Friday night and may have a hard time duplicating the offensive output over the Bulldogs as they scored 50 points in the wild win.

Eagleville has allowed just 61 points in their six contests this season, but the Rockets come in, on par with Cascade as the most prolific offensive machine in the district with a scoring average of 31.8 points per game.

Something's got to give here and by all accounts, it will be the red-hot Rockets, led by senior all-state running Zach Ray, who will churn out the yards on the ground, while his junior signal caller Brooks Lamb tosses and runs in his usual grind it out, steady performance as the Blue Crew flies over the Eagles in a 28-24 triumph.