High school football: One more quiet week before the storm
By Mike London
The lull before the storm continues.
It will be another relatively quiet football Friday in Rowan County.
No thrilling games are expected. Salisbury, West Rowan and North Rowan certainly hope things don’t get exciting.
Salisbury is a 44-point favorite at Lexington, and it probably will be worse than that.
West Rowan is a 20-point favorite at home with an 86-percent win probability (per the Massey Ratings) against Central Cabarrus.
North Rowan is a 27-point favorite at home against West Davidson with a 90-percent win probability, and the Cavaliers may be running laps next week if they only win by 27.
Carson and East Rowan played each other Wednesday. This is South Rowan’s off week.
But it won’t be long before it gets really fun. West Rowan is at Concord next week in a highly anticipated game, and the playoffs and some serious competition for the Hornets will be here before you know it.
SALISBURY (7-0, 4-0 CCC) at LEXINGTON (0-5, 0-3 CCC), 7:30 p.m.
Ouch. Lexington lost to two teams the Hornets beat by 60-something, so this won’t be pretty.
Salisbury has won the last five meetings, including a 51-0 wipeout last spring.
The Yellow Jackets beat Salisbury in 2015, but the Hornets have won 17 of the last 18.
The only real suspense is whether Salisbury will earn its sixth shutout.
CENTRAL CABARRUS (2-4, 2-1 SPC) at WEST ROWAN (4-2, 3-0 SPC), 7 p.m.
West is coming off its open week and hopefully didn’t lose any of the momentum it had built with four straight victories.
With one league loss, Central, head-coached by former West assistant Zach Bevilacqua, is still in the hunt for the South Piedmont Conference championship.
Central played a solid non-conference schedule (Robinson, Mount Pleasant, Freedom) and dropped its first four games, including a 22-20 SPC setback against Concord. Then the Vikings beat South Rowan and East Rowan for a modest two-game winning streak.
But the Vikings didn’t scare anyone last week in squeezing past East Rowan 13-7.
West should be in good shape in this one, as long as the Falcons aren’t caught looking ahead to next week’s showdown at Concord.
West won the last meeting in 2016 and also won in 2014 and 2015. Central’s most recent victory was in 2013. The all-time series is tied 9-all.
WEST DAVIDSON (1-5, 1-2 CCC) at NORTH ROWAN (4-2, 2-1 CCC), 7:30 p.m.
The Green Dragons edged Lexington 13-12 last week for the first win for new head coach Brian Billings, a South Rowan graduate.
But it will be tougher this week. North will have an enormous speed advantage, and there should be no shortage of big plays for the talented trio of Jeremiah Alford, Jae’mias Morrow and Amari McArthur.
North is 19-4 all-time against the Green Dragons. The most recent meeting was a 42-0 North victory in 2016. West Davidson’s last win in the series came in 2008 when the Green Dragons were Central Carolina Conference champs.
SOUTH IREDELL (2-5, 1-2 GMC) at A.L. BROWN (3-4, 0-4 GMC), 7:30 p.m.
Hard to believe A.L. Brown has dropped four straight, two of them by one point, but it’s happened.
When it rains, it pours.
The Wonders are the only team that hasn’t won a Greater Metro Conference game, and with the exception of very stout Hickory Ridge, this is not an overwhelming football league, just a decent one.
South Iredell was flattened by Mooresville last week, which has to be encouraging for desperate A.L. Brown fans. For what it’s worth, the Wonders are definitely favored in this one.
Maybe the Wonders turn it around and win their last three. After South Iredell and Mooresville, they’ll finish the regular season with the non-conference “Bell Game” against Concord.
South Iredell has only faced the Wonders four times previously. The Wonders won three, but South Iredell took the most recent meeting, 41-21 in the 2017 state playoffs.
WEST FORSYTH (3-3, 1-2 CPC) at DAVIE (5-2, 2-2 CPC), 7 p.m.
The fun never stops for Davie, which outscored Mount Tabor 56-49 on Monday thanks to a fast and furious 29-point fourth quarter.
Despite that 3-3 record, West Forsyth is a top-25 team in the state, and the War Eagles are in for another tough fight. Davie is a 6-point underdog.
Davie has won two straight thrillers against the Titans, 36-35 in overtime last spring and 37-34 in 2019 against a West Forsyth team that came in 7-0.
Maybe Davie can keep that magic against the Titans going.