Friday football previews: Schedule still tough for Hillside football

tstevens@newsobserver.comSeptember 12, 2013 

No. 1 Hillside (2-0) at Greensboro Dudley (3-0), 7:30

Hillside continues its very difficult non-conference schedule with a trip to Greensboro Dudley. Hillside defeated New Bern in overtime in its opener and nipped rival Southern Durham. Dudley has allowed 10 points in its three opening wins.

No. 2 Leesville Road (2-0) at Athens Drive (2-1), 7 p.m.

Leesville Road was open last week, but easily handled opening assignments against Durham Jordan and Apex. Athens knocked off previously unbeaten Lee County last week.

No. 4 Wake Forest (3-0) at Wilmington Hoggard (3-0), 7:30

Wake Forest faces a playoff-like challenge against Hoggard, which was 9-3 in 2012 and is unbeaten this season. Wake Forest is led by Bryce Love, who averages 15.8 yards per carry.

Graham (0-3) at No. 5 Orange (3-0), 7:30

The unbeaten Panthers are expected to be too much for Graham, which is allowing 47.7 points per game.

Cary (2-1) at No. 6 Garner (2-1), 7 p.m.

Before there was a Middle Creek and before there was a Southeast Raleigh, Garner had one and only rival: Cary. The two get back together for the first time in a decade.

Scotland (3-0) at No. 7 Southern Durham (1-1), 7:30

Southern expected to contend for the state 3A title, will be tested by Scotland, which is coming off 12-2 and 15-0 seasons. The Scots have beaten Hope Mills South View, 41-9; Fayetteville Britt, 52-21; and Marlboro, S.C., 21-14.

Smithfield-Selma (0-3) at No. 8 Clayton (3-0), 7

Clayton finishes its four week run against Johnson County opponents with rival SSS. The Spartans, who haven’t beaten Clayton since 2006, must slow down Clayton’s Wing-T attack.

No. 9 Cleveland (2-1) at No. 13 Green Hope (2-1), 7:30

Two teams with very similar starts to the season (tough opening losses, followed by back-to-back wins) get together for the first time. After giving up 84 points in its first game and a half, Cleveland’s defense has come into its own in the last six quarters.

Pittsboro Northwood (3-0) at No. 10 Carrboro (3-0), 7:30

Northwood’s new passing-oriented offense is averaging 450 yards in total offense and 39 points. Carrboro’s Trai Sharp averages 125 yards rushing.

No. 11 Erwin Triton (3-0) at Southern Lee (1-2), 7:30

Triton has not been pushed in its three opening wins. Southern Lee averages 28 points, but allows 32.7.

No. 12 Knightdale (2-1) at Enloe, 7 p.m.

Knightdale opened with a couple of wins, but lost last week to Heritage 23-22. The Knights were expected to have an explosive offense, but they are averaging 19 points.

No. 14 Wakefield (2-0) at Southeast Raleigh (1-2), 7

The flashy names with all of those recruiting stars are gone from Wakefield but the points are still coming on the scoreboard (averaging 38.5 a game). Southeast, which played a pair of state powers the first two weeks, shined in its home opener – a shutout of Enloe – last week.

No. 15 West Johnston (2-1) at Fuquay-Varina (1-1), 7:30

West hits the road coming off of a disappointing loss to rival Cleveland. The Wildcats get a chance to get back on the winning side against a Fuquay-Varina team coming off of an off week. Last year’s win over the Bengals was a huge win for West. Getting one on the road this year would be just as impressive.

Other games

Cardinal Gibbons (2-1) at Broughton (0-3), 7

Cardinal Gibbons features quarterback Shawn Stankavage, who leads the Crusaders in passing and rushing. Broughton was pounded last week by Garner, 58-10.

Cedar Ridge (0-3) at Durham Riverside (2-1), 7:30

Cedar Ridge came close last week, falling to East Chapel Hill, 24-21. Riverside beat Chapel Hill in the opener, but has fallen to Fuquay-Varina and Orange.

East Wake (1-2) at Heritage (2-1), 7:30

Heritage was expected to contend for the Cap Eight 4A title, but struggled in a 44-0 loss to Panther Creek two weeks ago. Damontay Rhem averages 129 yards rushing for East Wake.

Jordan (1-2) at Panther Creek (1-1), 7:30

Jordan nipped Enloe 21-20, but was overpowered by Green Hope and Leesville Road. Panther Creek is ready to play after an open date last week and a pounding of Heritage the week before.

Millbrook (2-1) at Northern Durham (0-3), 7

Millbrook’s defense is pretty good, allowing only 12 points per game. Northern has been out-scored 171-22.

Sanderson (1-2) at Holly Springs (0-2), 7:30

Sanderson played Knightdale and Green Hope close before beating Apex last week. Holly Springs’ Tray Staten averages 135 yards rushing.

Bunn (1-2) at Corinth Holders (2-1), 7:30

Corinth Holders’ improvement on defense has been one of the biggest factors in its impressive start – two wins and a narrow loss to 3-0 Clayton. That unit gets a big challenge here from the Wildcats, which features one of the fastest groups of running backs around.

Spring Creek (0-3) at Wake Christian (1-2), 7:30

WCA will be looking to get back on track after two rough weeks, giving up 86 points in its last two outings. Spring Creek is on a 17-game losing streak.

Princeton (1-2) at North Johnston (0-3), 7:30

The visiting Bulldogs have dropped two close games the past two weeks. The Panthers have been in position to get wins the last two weeks but fell short on both occasions. Somebody’s going to get over their hump this week.

South Johnston (0-3) at Red Springs (0-3), 7:30

On paper, meetings between a pair of winless football teams in the fourth week of the season don’t appear very interesting. That’s not the case here. Red Springs has losses to two 3A schools and one 4A squad. South has shown promise on offense but must start turning drives into points.

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