Wolfpack aim to ground Falcons in key Mountain 7 matchup

Ridgeview Wolfpack (6-1, 4-1 M7)


Abingdon Falcons (4-3, 3-0 M7)

When:  Friday, October 25 at 7:00 p.m.

Where:  The Ridge, Rose Ridge, Va.

Series all time:  Series tied 1-1 (Last meeting Abingdon defeated Ridgeview 36-30 in OT, October 19, 2018 in Abingdon, Va.)

The Mountain 7 District is one of the premier football districts in all of southwest Virginia.  The case was proven last Friday night at Tommy McAmis field in Norton.  Given little chance at a win by most pundits, Wise Central shocked everyone by upsetting Union and throwing the district title race into chaos.  The loss by the Bears leaves only Abingdon undefeated in district play.

The preseason favorite by most southwest Virginia media outlets, including this CoalfieldSports.com, tabbed Ridgeview as the preseason favorite to win the M7.  All of those predictions seemed to be shot down by Union two weeks ago, when the Bears defeated the Pack in Big Stone Gap.  The loss by Union has provided the Wolfpack with another opportunity.  That opportunity comes Friday night in Dickenson County.

As this is the final district contest of the season for Ridgeview, the Pack can claim no worse than a share of the district championship with a victory over the high flying Falcons.

The Wolfpack shocked most by defeating Abingdon in year one of this Mountain 7 series 21-13.  Last year, the Wolfpack were the favorites to win, but were upset by the Falcons in overtime, 36-30.  The win by Abingdon last season, coupled with a win over Union the following week gave the Falcons the Mountain 7 district championship in 2018.

The Wolfpack will be challenged defensively to slow down speedy Martin Lucas.  The junior has 887 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns on 141 carries so far this season.  When the Falcons are not running the ball with Lucas leading the way, quarterback Jadon Boothe has proved to be a capable passer.  Boothe has thrown for 574 yards and seven touchdowns on the season.  Leading the receiving corps is River Carter who has 18 catches for 149 yards and two scores.

The Falcons defense averages giving up 27 points a contest. The Wolfpack look to exploit the Falcon defense further with running back Trenton Adkins grinding the yards and the clock.  Quarterback Nick Phillips can utilize his legs as well, as proven last week in a victory over the John Battle Trojans.

The Wolfpack defense will be led by senior Alijah Sproles and freshman Cannon Hill.  Hill made waves in the victory over Battle with a dazzling interception and numerous bone-rattling hits.  Both linebackers will be called upon to slow down the running of Lucas.

The Falcons are led on defense by Carter who has two interceptions on the season as well as 20 total tackles.  Tyler Harless is also one to watch on defense for the Falcons with three sacks and 24 total tackles on the season.

If a late game field goal is needed in the closing seconds, both kickers are capable of delivering a game winning field goal.  Ridgeview kicker Landon Knepp continues to provide solid kicking for the Pack adding to his field goal tally last week with a 24 yarder against Battle.  The Falcons kicker, Graham Griffith is a perfect 2-2 on the season with a long from 37 yards.

The stage is set for an epic contest on the Ridge.  With the winner, in all likelihood getting at least a share of the district championship, expect a huge crowd on the Ridge in this Mountain 7 District showdown.


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