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Redmen look to take air out of Trojans

Rock Hill Redmen offensive lineman Matt Murphy (75) looks to make a trap block on a running play during last week’s Ohio Valley Conference game against Coal Grove. The Redmen host Portsmouth this Friday. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Rock Hill Redmen offensive lineman Matt Murphy (75) looks to make a trap block on a running play during last week’s Ohio Valley Conference game against Coal Grove. The Redmen host Portsmouth this Friday. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Jim Walker

jim.walker@irontontribune.com

 

PEDRO — It’s the Army-Navy game, high school football style.

The Rock Hill Redmen will use their Army-like ground game against the Portsmouth Trojans Navy-like air attack as the teams meet in an Ohio Valley Conference game on Friday.

Rock Hill has a strong running game featuring seniors Chance Blankenship and Danny Long while Portsmouth is led by the passing tandem of sophomore quarterback Cole Lowery (6-1, 171) and senior running back Austin Hollins (6-0, 190) provide the bulk of the offense.

“We’re about as contrasting styles as they come right now,” said Rock Hill coach Todd Knipp.

Last week in a loss to Ironton, Lowery was 9-of-20 passing for 190 yards and two touchdowns and ran 20 times for 63 net yards. Hollins caught four passes for 151 yards and two scores.

Blankenship had 186 yards on 20 carries and Long 132 yards on 15 attempts in a 33-21 loss to Coal Grove.

“We just couldn’t make the big play or get a turnover when we needed it,” Knipp said of last week’s game. “Blankenship and Long have been running pretty well.”

Other key weapons for the Trojans are running back Darray Richardson (6-0, 155) and receivers Dylan Mullins (5-9, 160), Luke Purdy (5-10, 165) and Ryan Williams (6-0, 171).

“(Lowery) has shown the ability to run. He’s a pretty good athlete,” said Knipp. “Hollins is a pretty nice player and they have a couple of other real nice receivers.”

Knipp is hoping that an early season game against River Valley will provide some valuable experience.

“River Valley lined up in a lot of wide-open stuff. We’ve seen it before, so that’s kind of good because we’ll be a little more prepared,” said Knipp. “Everybody does it a little different. Their speed is always worrisome.”

Rock Hill (3-2, 1-1) and Portsmouth (2-3, 1-1) both need a win to stay alive in the OVC race as well as the computer ratings.

Knipp said Portsmouth’s offensive line could be a problem as the Redmen attempt to slow down Lowery.

“They’re big up front. Hopefully, we can slow them down and get some pressure on (Lowery). We need to make plays that put them in situations they don’t want to be in.” said Knipp.

In other games, the Coal Grove Hornets host the Fairview Eagles and top quarterback prospect Alex Roy (6-4, 220), the South Point Pointers visit the Chesapeake Panthers, the Fairland Dragons travel to Ironton, the Symmes Valley Vikings play at Beaver Eastern on Saturday, and the Green Bobcats host Portsmouth Notre Dame.

 

2015 High School Football Standings

Ohio Valley Conference

OVC Overall

W L Pts. Opp W L Pts Opp

Coal Grove 2 0 54 21 2 3 86 105

Ironton 1 0 42 20 1 4 81 128

Rock Hill 1 1 48 53 3 2 86 107

Portsmouth 1 1 55 49 2 3 73 137

South Point 1 1 32 29 2 3 93 107

Chesapeake 0 1 20 27 4 1 144 29

Fairland 0 2 15 67 0 5 35 194

Southern Ohio Conference

Division I

SOC Overall

W L Pts Opp W L Pts Opp

Oak Hill 2 0 59 12 2 3 94 114

Sciotoville East 1 0 52 16 4 1 176 140

Northwest 1 0 40 34 3 2 134 118

Symmes Valley 1 1 54 39 2 3 112 82

Ports. Notre Dame 1 1 42 50 3 2 150 147

Beaver Eastern 0 2 58 76 2 3 122 130

Green 0 2 22 100 1 4 74 224

Division II

SOC Overall

W L Pts Opp W L Pts Opp

Wheelersburg 0 0 0 0 5 0 171 28

Lucasville Valley 0 0 0 0 5 0 196 59

Minford 0 0 0 0 3 2 144 12

Waverly 0 0 0 0 3 2 88 111

Portsmouth West 0 0 0 0 1 4 54 139

Southeastern Ohio Athletic League

SEOAL Overall

W L Pts Opp W L Pts Opp

Logan 0 0 0 0 5 0 162 107

Jackson 0 0 0 0 4 1 81 36

Gallipolis 0 0 0 0 0 5 71 184

Vincent Warren 0 0 0 0 0 5 13 228