• 54°

OVC begins league race

SOUTH POINT – The season within a season.

Thursday, September 27, 2001

SOUTH POINT – The season within a season. High school football teams play a 10-game regulars season, but within that season can be a conference schedule. That inner season begins Friday in the Ohio Valley Conference.

With only five teams, each game carries great importance. Thus, the Fairland Dragons at South Point Pointers and Coal Grove Hornets at Rock Hill Redmen are two games that carry key ramifications.

South Point (3-2) is considered a strong contender to the Chesapeake Panthers, the OVC’s preseason favorite. The Pointers need a win to set the tone for a possible title chase.

The Pointers, who racked up 520 yards offense last week – all on the ground – in crushing Northwest 60-8, will need another strong effort against the Dragons (2-3).

Coach Brent Wilcoxon said the Dragons feature three complimentary running backs in Tristan Clark, Chris Hardy, and Darin Thomas.

"They have good running backs," Wilcoxon said. "Hardy and Thomas both run hard, and Clark has good speed. We have to contain them."

South Point is 3-2 and Fairland 2-3. The Dragons have been plagued with turnovers all season. Two fumbles returned for touchdowns cost them a win over Tolsia.

"We’ve both been up and down this year," Wilcoxon said. "Look at our losses and you see a lot of breakdowns and obvious, huge mistakes. Whichever one of us can play the closest to error-free will win."

The Dragons must stop the explosive double-winged offense of the Pointers that has a variety of threats led by Shane Holsinger, Bryan Maggard, and Donte Pennington.

"They have a lot of speed and run a lot of misdirection and other stuff that makes it hard to defend," Dragons coach Bryan Ward said. "Defensively they’re bringing a lot of people at you and try to confuse your blocking scheme. Our line will have to play well."

The Coal Grove at Rock Hill game pits two teams coming off lopsided losses. Coal Grove struggled with the Raceland Rams passing game in a 31-7 loss. Rock Hill lost 50-0 to Wellston which is considered the favorite in the Tri-Valley Conference and a playoff contender.

Chesapeake will play the non-league game this week as the Panthers travel to Tolsia, W.Va. The Panthers are 3-2 and have climbed to No. 7 in the Region 19 Division V computer ratings.