Preview: Northwest Cabarrus at Charlotte Catholic

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 14, 2008

*Time: 7:30 p.m.
*Records: NW Cabarrus 5-6; Charlotte Catholic 9-2
*Bracket: 3AA
*Seeds: No. 16 NW Cabarrus vs. No. 1 Charlotte Catholic
*Last meeting: Northwest lost to Catholic 25-14 in the 2006 West final
*Last week: Northwest took a 33-7 thumping from Lake Norman; Catholic overwhelmed Berry Academy 41-14
*Next week: Winner takes on the survivor of the game between No. 9 Winston-Salem Parkland (4-7) and No. 8 Asheville Erwin (6-5)
*Home and road splits: Northwest is 3-3 on the road; Catholic is 4-1 at home
*Game notes: There aren’t many worse draws than going to Charlotte Catholic, a tough place to play. There’s also the reality that coach Jim Oddo’s crew is always gathering momentum by playoff time.
Oddo’s Cougars have played in the state championship game each of the past three seasons.
Tucker Windle, a 225-pound tight end/linebacker headed to Virginia, is Catholic’s best-known player this season.
Northwest has made notable playoff runs in recent seasons, including one that Catholic ended two years ago, but few people expect the Trojans to keep this one interesting for long.
Northwest has gotten great efforts from veterans such as receiver Graham Wright and running back Dolando Clowney, but the Trojans have yet to beat a top-tier opponent. They own five wins, but none of the teams they beat finished with better than a 3-8 record.Catholic has mastered the Wing-T offense and has scored 41, 42, 42 and 41 points the past four weeks. Catholic’s losses were early to South Meck and Country Day. The Cougars have won eight in a row.