This season, the folks at Coalfield Sports are picking five of the most intriguing matchups in the area to be the games of the week before you the fans select THE game of the week.
Each week, Ryan and Brady, the hosts of the SWVASports Podcast will pick the five contests and be joined by a special guest each week.
So far, the records are as follows:
Guest: 12-3 (Eugene Hilton: 3-2, Lloyd Combs: 5-0, Rick Baker 4-1)
Last week, Rick Baker went 4-1 during his time in the spotlight. However, so did the regulars. All three missed the George Wythe upset over Marion. Ryan and Brady look to get back on track this week.
This week’s guest picker is a face that has been familiar to the folks in southern West Virginia, southwest Virginia and northeast Tennessee for the past decade. We are pleased to introduce to you WCYB sports director Casey Goetz as week four’s guest. Goetz grew up in Pittsburgh before attending John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio, where he graduated with a degree in Communication. His journalism career began in his hometown of Pittsburgh where he served as a sports producer at KDKA-TV. Casey first appeared on the tube in Bluefield, where he served as the weekend sports anchor from April 2008-July 2010. Casey took on the same role at WCYB in 2010 before being named the sports director in 2015.
This week, the five games are: George Wythe at Chilhowie, Grayson County at Glenvar, Thomas Walker at Rye Cove, Giles at Narrows and the CoalfieldSports.com Game of the Week, Union at Ridgeview.
Let’s get to it!
George Wythe at Chilhowie:
Brady: Both of these teams won convincingly last week. Cole Simmons, Jacquez Younger and the gang shocked us last week by thumping Marion. Chilhowie shut out Twin Springs behind some thorough rushing by Greg Sanchez, Anthony Blevins and Will Russell. The Maroons have always given me trouble in these pick ems. However, Chilhowie is one of southwest Virginia’s best teams. Look for Jeff Robinson and the crew to add another W by their name.
Casey: Chilhowie 36, George Wythe 22. The Warriors get some revenge after losing to George Wythe last year.
Ryan: After week one, I would have thought this game was an afterthought. The Maroons did not look impressive. They opened some eyes in week two with a big win over Ft. Chiswell and steamrolled Marion last week. That makes this game more intriguing. Make no mistake about it: Chilhowie is THE team to beat in Class A Region D (and probably in Region C as well). Warriors get it done by 4.
Grayson County at Glenvar:
Brady: Both of these teams have started out 2018 the best way possible. Undefeated. Grayson County has had some great performances, especially from their tailback Jake Hollingsworth. Glenvar smoked Grayson last season by 30 and I think they will send the Blue Devils back to Independence in similar fashion. Give me the better tested Highlanders.
Casey: Glenvar 28, Grayson County 20. My guarantee of the week. One of these teams will suffer their first loss of the season.
Ryan: This is a game that intrigues me. We believe that Grayson is a good little team this year. We do know that Glenvar has impressed so far with a tough schedule. In the end, I think Glenvar is just too good for the Blue Devils this year. I like the Highlanders by a couple touchdowns.
Thomas Walker at Rye Cove:
Brady: Rye Cove got a convincing 28-8 win last week over Hancock County, TN behind a big performances from Mason Hardin and Matthew Gibson. After a week one loss, Thomas Walker has seemed to get back on track. Last week’s 24-0 shutout win over Castlewood was the first shutout for Thomas Walker since 2009. Zach Kidwell may be a freshman but I think he gets it done again this week for Thomas Walker.
Casey: Thomas Walker 30, Rye Cove 23. Thomas Walker moves to 3-1 with a road win.
Ryan: I’m a big fan of the Rye Cove Golden Eagles. I’m also drinking the Pioneer flavored Koolaid from Thomas Walker. I think the Cove is just a step behind this season, so I’ll take Thomas Walker in a game closer than the experts think.
Giles at Narrows:
Brady: Giles had a lot of questions coming into 2018 with what was a reported decrease in numbers. Giles took home a week two victory over Christiansburg behind Chaston Ratcliffe. While the Spartans first loss was rather convincing behind Eddie Sloss’s Blacksburg Bruins, their second loss last week against Graham was a sign that the Spartans still have the fight in them that one has became accustomed to out of Pearisburg. Narrows is 3-0 after a pair of convincing wins and an escape from Auburn in week one. It is now or never for Narrows. The Green Wave are coming off one of their most successful seasons in school history and has started off just as hot. All Narrows needs to do is defeat Giles, something they haven’t done since 2002. Wyatt Freeman and the gang will have unlimited Whoppers for life after Narrows ends their losing skid to Giles Friday.
Casey: Narrows 42, Giles 21. Narrows keeps their perfect season in tact.
Ryan: Narrows is enjoying a run of success that I’ve never personally seen them have before. Giles is down in numbers and severely beat up. Injuries could play a big factor in this one. But as Ric Flair once said, “To be the man, you’ve gotta beat the man.” Giles is the man. Spartans by 6.
COALFIELDSPORTS.COM GAME OF THE WEEK: Union at Ridgeview:
Brady: Man, I have had this one circled since the beginning of the season. This is easily the biggest game to ever be played in Ridgeview’s short history. The final few years of Clintwood and Haysi High School’s brought many big time game atmospheres. Expect Rose Ridge to be christened for their first big time game Friday. A standing room only crowd will watch a battle of very talented tailbacks with Union’s Avery Jenkins and Ridgeview’s Trenton Adkins and Matthew Sexton. Are we surprised that their will be great tailbacks in a matchup that before consolidation featured the likes of Thomas and Julius Jones and Justin Hamilton? I think Adkins shows many doubters that he is for real against the Bears. Ridgeview takes advantage of hosting this one. Havoc said pizza is on him at Pizza Factory. See y’all there.
Casey: Union 28, Ridgeview 27. Until somebody from far Southwest Virginia beats the Bears, I’m taking Union.
Ryan: Let me start off by thanking the administration of these schools for keeping this a Friday kickoff. This is going to be huge, and the winner is likely crowned the Mountain 7 champion later this season. Both teams run the ball well with multiple backs. Both teams can throw. This one comes down to defense. I trust that Union defense led by Mason Polier. Bears by 7.
I am a graduate of Richlands High School—class of 2014. In May 2018, I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Multimedia Journalism and History with a minor in war and Society from Virginia Tech.
My passions in life are numerous. We don’t have all day. This is not the place to divulge into Hokie Football, so I will shed some light on one of my other favorites.
I was born and raised in the coalfields of southwest Virginia—Richlands to be exact. I remember the first time I ever went to a high school football game (Richlands-Tazewell ’02). Since then, a passion has grown that is stronger than the current in the Clinch River. As a football player in this region, I was able to witness the passion oozing out of the hills firsthand. It was something that when I began college, people had a hard time believing the spectacle that is high school football in the coalfields. Luckily, I was able to go 42-8 in between the white lines on Fridays and Saturdays from 2010-2013. I look forward to having another platform to tell you my stories, your stories and their stories. Here’s to the good times and hoping I don’t leave you like I did Coach Greg Mance numerous times—by saying, “Gosh Durn It!”
Let’s talk, SWVA sports, Hokies, history or maybe even barbecue.