Hounds vs. Eagles could be key


By John Cate - jcate@civitasmedia.com



Smith


Johnson


North Surry head coach Danny Lyons was a happy man last Friday night, after his Greyhounds were one of the few area teams to choose to play despite very poor weather.

Facing a West Stanly team that was well equipped for rainy weather, thanks to its run-oriented offense and outstanding tailback, North Surry came away with a hard-fought victory.

The Greyhounds are 4-2 on the season, and with a few more breaks against county rivals East Surry and Mount Airy earlier in the year, they could easily be 6-0. But Lyons isn’t looking back on that. The four victories match the team’s total from all of last season.

Meanwhile, at North’s nearest rival in the Western Piedmont 2-A, Surry Central has already seen plenty of highs and lows — including the past two weeks. A week after stunning Mount Airy 20-0 and beating the Bears for the first time in 17 years, the Golden Eagles came crashing back to earth in a 31-6 loss at Salisbury.

As they head into conference play, both teams look competitive with their rivals, but will need to step up their games to have a chance at dethroning traditional power Carver.

Going into this week’s action, the MaxPreps.com power ratings rated the conference’s teams in this order:

Carver 104 (No. 15 in 2-A)

West Stokes 148

North Surry 215

Surry Central 346

Forbush 352

South Stokes 416

So far, this is what we’ve seen from the other four teams in the league:

* Carver: The Yellowjackets’ 3-3 record belies the strength of this team. Carver’s losses are to Greensboro Dudley, Statesville and Asheville, and it was extremely competitive against the latter two. Even the team’s wins aren’t exactly cupcake fodder, over Parkland (32-13), Mount Tabor (26-20) and North Forsyth (24-0). The Jackets have fielded stronger teams in the past, but they still look like the team to beat.

* West Stokes: The Wildcats, who will look to trick Carver and treat themselves to a conference title on Halloween night, have five victories in their first six games. Their only loss came to East Surry, 42-28 in week four, and they’ve also handled two other quality foes in Mount Airy and Walkertown to go along with two schedule-stuffers. They host North Surry next Friday in a huge game for both teams.

* Forbush: The Falcons have the same overall record (3-3) as Carver. But there’s a big difference in how they both got there. The three teams that Forbush has beaten this season, Elkin, North Wilkes and Cherryville, have exactly one victory between them, that coming when North Wilkes beat winless South Stokes. In its three losses to North Iredell, Starmount and East Wilkes, Forbush has struggled badly.

* South Stokes: The winless Sauras are likely to take it on the chin again this Friday, when they visit East Surry. Currently, South Stokes rates as the weakest 2-A team in the state per MaxPreps. The team has been somewhat competitive in a few games, but only against middling 1-A foes.

The most important game for the two local schools may actually be the one against each other, slated for Oct. 23. If North and Central take care of business against Forbush and South Stokes, the victor of the Surry County showdown may punch its playoff ticket with the victory. The Greyhounds probably have a tougher road. After being off this week, they visit West Stokes, host Carver and then host Central all in succession. The Golden Eagles have to visit Carver next week, but has games with the two weaker teams interspersed with its date at North Surry and its home finale against West Stokes.

Smith
http://www.mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/web1_Avery-Smith.jpgSmith

Johnson
http://www.mtairynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/web1_Chandler-Johnson_filtered.jpgJohnson

By John Cate

jcate@civitasmedia.com

Reach John on Twitter at @johncate73.

Reach John on Twitter at @johncate73.

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