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Game Day

Game Day
Dresden at Union City

   PLACE, TIME: War Memorial Stadium; 7:30 p.m.
2011 RECORDS: Dresden 4-1; Union City 2-3.
COACHES (RECORDS):  Dresden: Scott Hewett (86-81 in 16th season); Union City: Darren Bowling (136-75 in 18th season).
LAST MEETING: 2008 — Union City won 48-0.
SERIES RECORD — UC leads, 10-1-1.
KEY PLAYERS: Dresden — QB Gatlin Hatchel, RB/WR Colin Kanehl, TE/LB Tyler McPeak, RB/LB Eric VanDyke. Union City — RB/LB Keylon Hyde, Slot/LB Tymaine Strickland, QB/DL Joseph Shanks, Slot/SS Khiry Lewis.
  OUTLOOK: Union City’s three losses have all come vs. state-ranked foes, and the Lions bring a No. 7 standing (Class 2A) into this contest. Dresden’s only loss came against District 13A rival and sixth-ranked McKenzie, but a 3-2 mediocre Westview club represents the Lions’ only victory vs. an opponent with a winning record. Hatchel is an excellent dual threat and has a hand in nine of the Lions’ 10 touchdowns over the past two weeks. Lion head coach Scott Hewett has already announced his decision to step down at the end of the current season. Union City had its best overall performance of the season last week, albeit against a winless Greenfield squad, in a lopsided homecoming triumph. The Tornadoes were particularly better in the center-quarterback exchange department, with no foul-ups in an area that has been troublesome all season since starting center Brett Gore was hurt in the first game. Gore re-injured his knee in practice this week and likely won’t play tonight, but starting QB Travis Rutland, who has missed the entire season after finger surgery, has been cleared to play and likely will see action.

OC at Montgomery Cent.
   PLACE, TIME: Cunningham; 7 p.m.
2011 RECORDS: OC 5-0; Montgomery Central 3-2.
COACHES (RECORDS):  Obion Central: Shawn Jackson (23-24 in 5th season); Montgomery Central: Marcus Bragg (11-15 in 3rd season).
LAST MEETING: First-ever meeting.
KEY PLAYERS: Obion Central — QB Trey Phipps, LB Josh Quinton, RB/DB LaDevin Fair, WR/LB Marcus Parr, WR/DB Mason McGrew. Montgomery Central — QB Sam Hudson, RBs Kyree Hutcheson, Tommy Key and Derrion Reddin. WR Chris Patterson.
  OUTLOOK: The No. 5 Rebels are riding high and enjoying their highest-ever state ranking in the 51-year history of the program. With a win vs. the Indians, they can match the best start to a season in school history. The 1974 team won its first six games before finishing with a program-record nine wins in the season. OC has won four of its first five games by 30 or more points and is averaging more than 40 ppg with a big-play offense that has already recorded 14 TD plays of 45 yards or longer and another eight of 25 yards or longer. The Rebs have not trailed all season. The two shutouts recorded by the Obion Central defense marks the first time since the 2000 campaign that has happened in a season. Like his counterpart, Bragg took over a program at MC that had gone winless the year before he arrived. The Tribe won four games his first season and six last year when it made the state playoffs. MC has put together back-to-back wins after a 1-2 start, but those wins came vs. 0-5 Rossville and 2-2 Waverly.
South Fulton at Gleason

   PLACE, TIME: Parks-Edwards Field; 7:30 p.m.
2011 RECORDS: South Fulton 2-3; Gleason 2-2.
COACHES (RECORDS): South Fulton: Kelly Spivey (20-18 in 4th season); Gleason: Noah Lampkins (36-63 in 10th season).
LAST MEETING: 2010 — South Fulton won, 26-12.
SERIES RECORD — South Fulton leads, 35-22.
KEY PLAYERS: South Fulton — FB/DL Cody Tatum, QB JaQuay Garmon, HB/SS J.P. Fowler, OL/DL Zach Vaughn. Gleason — QB Conner Verdell, RBs David Spellings and Zach Mileski, TE/DE Gabe Lowrance.
 OUTLOOK: Though not a district game, this result could have playoff implications down the road. The Red Devils have put together back-to-back wins after a 0-3 start, though neither of the teams SF beat (Fulton City, Halls) will likely finish at or above .500. Any win counts in the state’s new playoff format though, and with berths likely to be at a premium due to District 13A having a stronger league and likely getting more bids, if South Fulton can have either 5, 6 or 7 victories by season’s end, it would likely be a lock for Week 11 and a third straight playoff berth. The Redmen have gone to the I-formation the last couple of weeks out of (injury) necessity, the design to get Fowler more touches. The versatile rusher/receiver has certainly been productive with nine TDs in those two games. Published in The Messenger 9.23.11

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