Rebels travel to Northwood, look to finish 10-0

*Photo Credit: SWVA Photography

Patrick Henry (9-0) at Northwood (1-8)

Thursday night’s Hogoheegee District matchup features two teams who have had entirely different seasons.

The Northwood Panthers are set to pack things up after tonight in what has been a woeful first season for Tim Johnson in Saltville. The Panthers lone win came in a 18-0 shutout over Twin Valley back on September 20. The Panthers have lost six consecutive games since in a season where they are being outscore by opponents 322-77.

Northwood is coming back home for senior night after a 49-33 loss at Fuller Field last week to Honaker. Northwood outgained the Tigers 381-352 in the total offense category. Coming into the contest, Northwood had mustered up a mere 44 points through eight games. Their 33-point night was led by Seth Debusk who threw for 153 yards and a touchdown in addition to two rushing touchdowns. Robert Burkett ran for 121 yards and two touchdowns in the loss last Friday.

The Panthers are set to face a Goliath on Thursday night in Saltville.

Mark Palmer and the Patrick Henry Rebels look to complete its first 10-0 regular season since 1997, when Ritchie Thomas’s version of the Rebels went 10-0 before finishing the season 11-1. A win Thursday will mark the second undefeated season in school history in Glade Spring. A win Thursday will also clinch the Rebels first district championship since that illustrious 1997 season.

Patrick Henry is coming off a 16-13 victory over rival Chilhowie last Friday night. Rebels quarterback Dakota Rector threw for 153 yards and a touchdown in the victory. Cody Smith scored both of the touchdowns for Patrick Henry. One on the end of a 55-yard pass from Rector, the other on the end of a four yard touchdown jaunt.  The Rebels high-powered offense racked up 295 yards of total offense in the win over the Warriors.

After an 11-2 season a year ago, the Rebels would love nothing more than to take momentum and a 10-0 record into the playoffs in 2019. The Rebels began the decade in 2010 with an 0-10 record and have the opportunity to close it with a 10-0 record after Thursday night.

However, the Rebels must take care of business on Friday against Northwood. Patrick Henry currently sits in the first spot of the VHSL 1D power points with a 3.33 point lead over second place J.I. Burton.

Thursday’s matchup will be the 33rd between these two schools in a series that dates back to 1987. Patrick Henry holds a 18-14 edge in the series, having won the past five. Northwood last got the victory in this matchup in 2013.

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