Over the past two decades, the Class 1 ranks of Virginia have became familiar with the Honaker Tigers and J.I. Burton Raiders.
Both teams have been a top of the Class 1 ranks when it comes to the programs in far southwest Virginia. Friday night will feature southwest Virginia’s dean of coaches on one sideline and a rookie coach on the other. However, regardless of the history the 2019 matchup will once again be on the marquee.
Honaker comes off of a 40-21 loss to Tazewell last week at Fuller Field. Tigers running back Trevor Dye finished the night with 115 rushing yards and two touchdowns to pace the Tigers offense in the loss. Dylan Casey also found the end zone for Honaker via the ground on an 11-yard scamper. Doug Hubbard will turn to Dye and his son Chandler with hopes to get back in the win column for the fourth time in 2019 as they make the 55-mile trip to Norton to take on the J.I. Burton Raiders.
The Raiders are set to protect Lawson-Fitchko Stadium for the second time in as many weeks when the Tigers come to town. Burton thrashed Eastside last week by a score of 48-6 for its third consecutive win. Jaymen Buchanan led the offensive attack for the Raiders. The J.I. Burton sophomore amassed 185 yards through the air for two touchdowns in the Cumberland District victory. Tre Keys and Tyrell Ingram were on the receiving end of Buchanan’s touchdown tosses. Mikey Culbertson led the Raiders rushing attack with 97 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Behind Buchanan and Culbertson, the J.I. Burton offense churned out 400 yards of offense in the thrashing of Eastside. In addition to allowing a mere six points, the Raiders defense forced four turnovers on the afternoon.
Jacob Caudill is in his first season at the helm of the Raiders, having taken over after a 21-year tenure by Jim Adams.
Friday night’s matchup in Norton marks the 14th meeting between these two schools dating back to 1940. J.I. Burton leads the series with an 11-2 advantage. Both of Honaker’s wins in the series came back in the 2011 and 2012 playoffs.
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