Midtown: Sports

Football focus

Friday matchup

Leesville Road (12-0)

at Garner (13-0)

Triangle football fans will get the much anticipated matchup of the region’s two undefeated teams, listed as No. 1 and No. 2 in The News & Observer’s prep football rankings since the preseason.

Leesville enters the NCHSAA 4AA third-round contest after having ground out a 37-30 win over Middle Creek and Garner ran through Wakefield, 76-34.

Leesville Road has dominated opponents this year, but has also proven an ability to rise to the occasion in close contests.

If Friday’s game turns into a back-and-forth scoring battle, it may come down to which team can make the big defensive play.

Garner has has found ways to limit big plays by opponents’ best players and capitalize by scoring in every phase of the game.

Garner won last year’s meeting, 42-21.

Start time: 7:30 p.m.

Coach speak

Chad Smothers

Leesville Road

“It’s going to be a great challenge. They may be as good or better than they were last year. We’re just going to have to do the little things better. ...If we get good field posistion, we’re going to have to take care of the ball and put it in the endzone, and we’re going to have to make them earn everything they get.”