Prep Football: North Rowan takes on Comets in showdown
By Mike London
Prep previews and picks …
Annually, this is an insane week for fall sports.
Volleyball conference tournaments and state playoffs. Girls golf regionals. Girls tennis dual team state playoffs and individual regionals. Cross country conference championships for boys and girls. Boys soccer Senior Nights.
There’s also a sixth fall sport — football. You’ve probably heard of it.
The football game of the night in the area, the state and maybe in the world is in New London, where North Rowan will be tackling North Stanly at 7 p.m. in a 1A Game of the Century. Both are ranked in the AP top 10. Both are 7-1 overall and 4-0 in the Yadkin Valley Conference. Both have lost only to a 3A team.
Looking at comparative YVC scores if you’re a North Rowan fan is scary:
• North Rowan 20, South Stanly 19
• West Montgomery 56, South Stanly 7
• North Stanly 28, West Montgomery 20
Those three scores lead us to believe that North Stanly should win by roughly 50 tonight, but I doubt that will be the case. I’m not sure where the Cavaliers’ collective heads were at when they played South Stanly, but I do believe they’ll bring it tonight, because this is a game people have been asking them about for a month.
North Rowan is a big, talented team for a 1A club and senior back Jaleel Webster (1,000 rushing yards) may be the county’s best offensive player. The only thing that stops North Rowan is North Rowan, and that’s with turnovers and/or penalties. North Rowan should score three or four touchdowns.
Whether that will be enough to win will depend on North Rowan’s 4-2-5 defense, which is usually imposing. The challenge tonight will come from a special running back and his offensive line. North Stanly junior Cameron Davis has put up a long string of numbers that look like misprints — 125 carries, 1,773 rushing yards, 25 TDs. Davis got 322 rushing yards in the Comets’ showdown with West Montgomery. He got 403 rushing yards, seriously … 403, against West Stanly.
The only team that stopped Davis this season was Northwest Cabarrus. He had a very human stat line against the Trojans — 14 carries, 52 yards, zero TDs. Not coincidentally, that was the game North Stanly lost.
North Stanly has thrown for only 686 yards, but the Comets put it in the air with some success against Northwest and against Albemarle. Not many teams have been able to make the Comets throw. North Rowan will certainly try.
North Stanly and North Rowan are only 26 miles apart, but the two Norths haven’t stared each other down since 2000. Whatever happens, it should be fun for fans. The Post’s Dave Shaw will be in attendance.
A lot happened last Friday. Payne Stolsworth broke the West Rowan single-game passing record with 368 yards — in a lopsided loss. That’s the second time this season we’ve had a school record for passing yards in a game broken in the county. Griffin Myers smashed Salisbury’s record earlier.
At Davie, despite missing the first five games this season, Cooper Wall broke the school receiving yards record for a career (2,642) on Friday. He has 30 TD catches, one short of tying the school mark. If you’re wondering how that compares with Rowan County records, East’s Seth Wyrick had 2,948 receiving yards and East’s Johnny Yarbrough had 43 TD catches.
The picks were 5-2 last week, a shaky effort. I lacked faith in South Rowan, but the Raiders pulled one out against Thomasville. I had all kinds of faith in Salisbury, based on comparative scores against Lexington and Thomasville, but the Hornets fell flat in a showdown at Ledford.
The picks are 35-9 for the season.
No. 133 Statesville (6-2, 1-1 NPC) at No. 281 Carson (3-5, 2-0 NPC)
Last meeting: Statesville 56, Carson 13 (2012)
The series: Statesville leads 6-1. Carson’s only win came in 2009
Streaks: Carson has won its last two.
Home/road: Statesville 2-2 on the road; Carson 1-3 at home
Pick: Statesville 27, Carson 14
No. 290 East Rowan (2-6, 0-2 NPC) at No. 54 South Iredell (6-2, 2-0 NPC)
Last meeting: East Rowan 20, South Iredell 12 (1976)
The series: East Rowan leads 8-2-1. Most recent South Iredell win was in 1973
Streaks: East has dropped five in a row, hasn’t won since Sept. 4. Vikings have won their last two.
Relevant scores: East lost to West Rowan. South Iredell clobbered West Rowan last week.
Home/road: East 1-3 on the road; South Iredell 4-0 at home
Pick: South Iredell 49, East Rowan 21.
No.136 West Rowan (4-4, 1-1 NPC) at No. 362 North Iredell (0-8, 0-2 NPC)
Last meeting: West Rowan 42, North Iredell 0 (2012)
The series: Falcons lead 19-3. Most recent North Iredell win was in 2002.
Streaks: North Iredell has lost 22 in a row. Last win for the Raiders: Oct.16, 2015
Home/road: West 2-1 on the road; North Iredell 0-4 at home
Pick: West Rowan 42, North Iredell 7
No. 145 North Rowan (7-1, 4-0 YVC) at No. 159 North Stanly (7-1, 4-0 YVC)
Last meeting: North Rowan 41, North Stanly 0 (2000)
The series: Cavaliers lead 14-5. Most recent North Stanly win was in 1998 when the Comets hung 50 on the Cavaliers
Streaks: North Rowan has won six straight since losing to 3A West Rowan. North Stanly has won four straight since losing to 3A NW Cabarrus.
Home/road: North Rowan 2-1 on the road; North Stanly 4-1 at home
Pick: North Rowan 28, North Stanly 27
No. 270 East Davidson (6-3, 4-2 CCC) at No. 196 Salisbury (5-2, 4-1 CCC)
Last meeting: East Davidson 24, Salisbury 14 (2016)
The series: Hornets lead 14-10. Most recent SHS victory was in 2014.
Relevant scores: East Davidson has played winless Central Davidson twice, unusual scheduling that has proved beneficial to the Golden Eagles. Salisbury beat Lexington. Lexington beat East Davidson.
Home/road: East Davidson 3-2 on the road; Salisbury 3-0 home
Pick: Salisbury 35, East Davidson 21
No. 334 South Rowan (2-6, 2-3 CCC) at No. 226 Lexington (3-4, 2-3 CCC)
Last meeting: Lexington 48, South Rowan 16 (1984)
The series: Yellow Jackets lead 9-1. Four of those meetings were in the postseason. South’s lone win was in a 1977 playoff game.
Streaks: South has won two in a row (first time since 2009).
Relevant scores: South lost to East Davidson. Lexington beat East Davidson.
Home/road: South Rowan 1-3 on the road; Lexington 2-2 home
Pick: Lexington 42, South Rowan 21
No. 12 Glenn (8-0, 2-0 CPC) at No. 53 Davie County (4-4, 1-1 CPC)
The series: Even though the schools are 29 miles apart — Glenn is in Kernersville — they’ve never squared off in football.
Streaks: Glenn, obviously, has won eight in a row.
Home/road: Glenn 4-0 on the road; Davie 2-2 at home
Pick: Glenn 24, Davie 17
No. 47 A.L. Brown (7-1, 2-0 SPC) at No. 122 NW Cabarrus (5-3, 1-1 SPC)
Last meeting: A.L. Brown 48, NW Cabarrus 0
The series: Wonders lead 39-3-1. Northwest’s last win was in 1976 when people still were watching the antics of Archie Bunker, Mary Tyler Moore and M*A*S*H.
Streaks: Wonders have won six straight since falling to Marvin Ridge.
Home/road: Wonders seem to be on the road every Friday, and they’re 5-0 in away games; NWC is 2-2 at home
Pick: A.L. Brown 28, NW Cabarrus 14