this crazy world filled with unknowns and surprises, sometimes things
happen the way they are supposed to.
That will be the case this Friday night in round four of the class 4-A
state playoffs. It will be a clash of the unbeaten as top-seeded
Rose (14-0) takes on 2nd-seeded Wilmington Hoggard (14-0), with
the winner playing in the state championship game the following
JH Rose is riding the second longest winning streak in the state at 35
games, while Hoggard comes in winners of 14 in a row. Rose
cruised pretty easily through the regular season but has run into some
tough competition lately. After allowing an opponent to reach 21
points only once during the regular season, the Rampants have had 21
scored on them in back to back weeks, including last weeks 28-21
thriller against Fuquay-Varina. Seven points is by far the
closest margin of victory for Rose, whose previous low margin of
victory was 23, against EE Smith in the regular season. 28 points
is also a season low for a Rose offense that had previously scored no
less than 37 points. (also vs EE Smith)
Hoggard on the other hand is on a roll. The Vikings have won 14
straight, and unlike the Rampants, have not been tested in the
playoffs. Ironically Hoggard played two familiar opponents in the
first two rounds of the playoffs. In the final two games of the
regular season Hoggard played conference games against Ashley, and then
New Hanover to round out the season. It was then on to the
playoffs where the schedule seemed to repeat itself. Hoggard
played and beat Ashley in the first round and New Hanover in the
second. The Vikings finally moved out of area last week in a
52-14 win over Durham Southern.
Much like Rose, Hoggard has been dominant all year long. The
Vikings are averaging 43 points per game while only allowing 12.
Hoggard is led offensively by Senior QB Brandon Miley, who has the best
passer rating in the state at 146, according to the Wilmington Star
News. Miley has completed 69 percent of his passes and thrown for
over 2,000 yards. However, Head Coach Scott Braswell’s Vikings
will likely look to run first against the Rampants. Hoggard has
more than twice as many touchdowns rushing than they do passing.
The Vikings leasing rusher is Rashad Williams, with more than 1,200
yards this season.
The winner of Friday night’s one versus two showdown advances to the
state championship game against the winner of West Charlotte and
Watauga, at Duke's Wallace Wade Stadium December 9th.
Don’t forget, Friday night we bring you all the exciting play-by-play
action live on Pirate Radio 1250 and 930 as Rose hosts Wilmington
Hoggard. It all starts with the special extended pre-game show Friday
night at 7 p.m.