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Raceland tough task for Ironton

Ironton Fighting Tigers’ linebacker Jeremy Bodmer (33) intercepts a pass near the goal line on the final play of the game in a 20-14 win over the Oak Hill Oaks last week. Ironton plays at Raceland Friday and needs a win to make the playoffs. (Courtesy of Tim Gearhart of Tim’s News & Novelties in Ironton)

Ironton Fighting Tigers’ linebacker Jeremy Bodmer (33) intercepts a pass near the goal line on the final play of the game in a 20-14 win over the Oak Hill Oaks last week. Ironton plays at Raceland Friday and needs a win to make the playoffs. (Courtesy of Tim Gearhart of Tim’s News & Novelties in Ironton)

Jim Walker

jim.walker@irontontribune.com

 

The Ironton Fighting Tigers need a win Friday.

It won’t be easy.

Ironton is 3-6 and must win in order to qualify for the Division V postseason playoffs. The Fighting Tigers visit the Raceland Rams who are worth 32 points.

The fact the Rams are worth a lot of points is a good thing, but the reason they are worth a lot of points is because they are a good team.

“They have some really good skilled kids. It’s not just one or two players,” said Ironton coach Mark Vass. “They have some good size and they are an experienced team. It’ll be a challenge for our kids.”

The Rams are 7-2 on the season. They beat Paintsville last week 32-10 to win the district title and earn the top seed in the Class A small school playoffs.

Their only losses this season were 35-34 in overtime at Ashland and 38-35 to Lawrence County. The Rams were missing senior running back and leading rusher Daylin Beach against Lawrence County.

Among the other top athletes for the Rams are senior quarterback Adam Elkins (5-11, 163) who is a three-year starter and runs the spread offense. Also in the backfield are Beach (6-0, 180) — a 1,000-yard rusher — and sophomore fullback Kane Snyder (6-0, 165).

The wide receivers are juniors Connor Messer (6-3, 161), Rodney Vance (6-0, 171) and Maverick Dixon (6-0, 160).

“Beach has really good speed. He’s one of the better backs in the area,” said Vass.

“Messer is a real nice athlete who can do a lot of things on both sides of the ball. He’s a nice receiver, but they have three or four guys who can run and catch the ball. And their quarterback does a nice job running their offense. He’s not afraid to tuck it and run, either.”

Up front the Rams have junior Lucas Bradley (5-11, 290) at center, seniors Nevan Johnson (6-4, 290) and Austin Manus (6-2, 240) at the guards, and seniors Alec Risner (6-1, 283) and Mac Boggs (6-4, 248) at the tackles.

“They have four seniors and a junior on the line. That’s a concern against our young guys,” said Vass.

On the defensive side, freshman Isaac Wallace (6-1, 297) and Manis are the tackles with Boggs and Risner the ends.

The linebacking corps is comprised of sophomore Seth Holbrook (6-0, 195), senior Timmy McComas (5-9, 165) and Snider.

In the secondary are junior Josh Young (6-2, 168) and Dixon at the corners with senior Brady Harris (5-8, 160) and Messer the safeties.

“They’re a nice team defensively. They get to the ball well and they have good speed across the board,” said Vass.

Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.