Friday night forecast ... Will Rosewood make it 21 in a row?
By Steve Roush
Published in Sports on November 3, 2006 1:47 PM
It's not easy to beat an opponent 20 straight times.
Just ask the Rosewood Eagles, who are hoping to make it 21 a row tonight against archrival Princeton.
The Bulldogs haven't tasted victory against the Eagles since the mid-1980s. And every single year, the stakes keep getting higher and higher when these two get together.
Do the math. You'll find that none of the players who will take the field tonight were even born when the streak began.
All streaks end sometime, but no Rosewood player wants that to happen on his watch.
"We had to win this game," Eagles senior defensive standout Markas Brunson said with relief after last year's 35-13 win over the 'Dawgs, "or we'd hear about it the rest of our lives."
Brunson has taken his game to the collegiate level and no longer has to shoulder the burden.
That's up to this year's squad.
"Princeton's the biggest rivalry we've got," Rosewood coach Daniel Barrow said. "Both teams started their football programs in the same year, 1971. In fact, back in the early days, we used to play each other twice a season. It's a backyard-type of deal because only seven miles separate the two schools.
"And there's nothing they'd want more than to beat Rosewood."
History can be heavy.
Rosewood at Princeton -- The Bulldogs (2-8, 0-4 Carolina) have two wins this year -- which is two more than Princeton had last year. Getting No. 3 tonight against the Eagles (5-5, 1-3) would be the sweetest victory in a long time.
James Kenan at Wallace-Rose Hill -- Have you bought your ticket yet? Both these teams are 10-0 and both are ranked in the AP top five in Class 1-A. The Bulldogs are No. 2, the Tigers are No. 4. While we're on the subject of streaks, James Kenan has lost seven straight in the series and Wallace-Rose Hill is 29-0 against Super Six opponents. And this is definitely worth repeating: In their four previous trips to Thell B. Overman Field, James Kenan football teams have been shut out 198-0. Who in their right mind would be crazy enough to pick the Tigers?
C.B. Aycock at Southern Wayne -- Aycock (7-3, 2-2 ECC) was on top of the Eastern Carolina Conference standings just two weeks ago. A loss tonight to the Saints (5-5, 1-3) would drop them all the way to fifth. Southern Wayne has the area's best offense (370.4 yards per game) -- but the worst defense (334.1 yards per game).
Eastern Wayne at Kinston -- Last year, the Vikes (2-8, 0-4 ECC) iced the Warriors (6-4, 2-2) out of the postseason by beating Eastern Wayne 20-13 at Little Big Horn. Now, it's Kinston that's winless in the conference. It's payback time.
North Pitt at Goldsboro -- The Cougars (0-10, 0-4 EPC) haven't (officially) won a game this year, but remember, Goldsboro crushed North Pitt (1-9, 0-4) by a score of 59-0 in 2005. Don't look for another 59-point performance this time, but...
Spring Creek at North Duplin -- While we're looking at history, the Gators (3-7, 1-3 Carolina) beat the Rebels (7-2, 3-1) in overtime at The Swamp last year. But this ain't last year.
Greene Central at North Lenoir -- The Hawks (3-7, 2-2 EPC) must win to get a playoff berth. The Rams (8-2, 3-1) need to win or perhaps go on the road in Round 1 of the playoffs.
Last week: 4-3 (.571)
Overall: 59-25 (.702)
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