Thomas Dale (Photo: Mike Caudill/recruit804)
recruit804 Power 10, Week 11: Hopewell, Highland Springs gearing up to defend respective state championships
by Brandon Mitchell, recruit804
1) Highland Springs (10-0)
2) Manchester (10-0)
3) Louisa County (10-0)
4) Henrico (8-1)
5) Hopewell (9-1)
6) Goochland (10-0)
7) Dinwiddie (9-1)
8) Varina (8-2)
9) Monacan (8-2)
10) Thomas Dale (8-2)
Highland Springs: Varina created a particular atmosphere on Saturday evening that would make an ordinary team fold under pressure. The problem with this is that Highland Springs isn’t an ordinary program. The Springers were able to defeat Varina on Saturday by a final score of 33-12. D’Vonte Waller complete 19-of-31 passes for 277 yards and two touchdowns while Rayquan Smith led the Springers on the ground with 31 yards on six carries. Highland Springs is projected to face Deep Run in the Region 5B quarter-finals and if things hold up, the Springers could possibly see this very same Varina team in a Region 5B finals match up in a few weeks.
Manchester: The Lancers were unable to catch Colonial Forge mostly due the strength of schedule for Manchester despite wins over Monacan, Midlothian and L.C. Bird this season. Manchester was able to knock off George Wythe on Thursday night which will be their last tune up before the start of the playoffs next week. Brendon Clark completed 8-of-11 passes for 92 yards and five touchdowns while David Mendell rushed for 92 yards on seven rushing attempts and one touchdown. With James River knocking off Midlothian on Thursday night, the Lancers look to have a region quarter-final match up against Riverbend locked in. Manchester has won their last three match ups against Riverbend.
Louisa County: The Lions have stayed off the radar in terms of recognition everywhere except with recruit804. Louisa completed an undefeated bid for the second time in as many seasons by knocking off Fluvanna County, 35-7. By winning, the Lions were able to secure the top seed in Region 4B and will look forward to hosting Huguenot in the region quarter-finals. The road for Louisa won’t be any easier than it was last season. Should the Lions knock off the Falcons next week, they’ll have Eastern View to most likely look forward to in a possible region semi-final matchup.
Henrico: The Warriors did its job on Thursday night knocking off Armstrong easily, 44-0. With Eric McDaniels resting we got to see a large portion of Marqe Harvey in the running game as well as well as Hayden Vozar in the passing game. The win does nothing for Henrico in terms of playoff positioning. They appear to be locked into the second seed in Region 5B and look to have a region quarter-final matchup up with Varina all but finalized. The real battle came between Varina and Highland Springs on Saturday afternoon. A loss for the Blue Devils put them exactly where they are against Henrico.
Hopewell: Phoebus defeating Menchville on Saturday afternoon secured the top seed in Region 3A for the Phantoms yet again despite Hopewell knocking off Norcom and Dinwiddie in the same season. It would appear as though their loss to Thomas Dale came back to haunt them, however; securing the second seed guarantees at least two home playoff games moving forward which was more than the Blue Devils were allotted last season. Hopewell defeated Meadowbrook on Thursday night 61-7 in a matchup the Blue Devils lost last season. With Petersburg destroying Matoaca on Thursday night 50-21, Hopewell and the Crimson Wave match up in the region quarterfinals.
Goochland: The Bulldogs were able to complete a perfect season on Saturday afternoon after knocking off Amelia County by a score of 17-12. It was the second season in row that the Bulldogs were able to knock off Amelia County with last season serving as the more dramatic victory. Goochland dropped 10 points in the first quarter and held Amelia County at bay despite Jalen Brown throwing for over 300 yards. With the regular season wrapped up, Goochland will host Brunswick next week in the region quarter-finals. Brunswick is currently in the eighth seed, and suffered a loss to Greensville County on Friday night.
Dinwiddie: All the Generals needed on Thursday night was a hefty dose of Cirdale Luccess and Tyre Dalton to make short work of Colonial Heights, 35-0. Luccess rushed for 195 yards and four touchdowns while Dalton rushed for 99 yards and one touchdown. Dinwiddie is in a comfortable position in Region 4B with the #3 seed. They’ll play Courtland in the opening round. If all stays the way it is, Dinwiddie could see a region semi-final match up with Eastern View in a few weeks. The Generals got the best of the Cyclones last season in the region semi-finals by a score of 40-37. It was the only time in school history for both teams that these two have matched up.
Varina: The Blue Devils knew what they were getting themselves into when they saw Highland Springs on the schedule for the last game of the season, Varina was able to hang with Highland Springs for quite a while before the Springers were able to pull away with a 20-point third quarter. Marquis Johnson tossed three interceptions which put the Blue Devils behind the power curve. Mills Godwin was in control of its own destiny on Friday night before suffering a loss to Deep Run. The loss may have knocked the Eagles out of the final playoff spot in Region 5B leaving Deep Run to fill the vacated position. Highland Springs will match up with Deep Run next week while the Blue Devils will have a rematch against Henrico.
Monacan: The Chiefs didn’t rest many on Thursday night taking it to Huguenot by a final score of 41-0. Stone Snyder stayed in rhythm completing 13-of-21 passes for 187 yards and two touchdowns both going to Taylor Green. Green led all receivers with 104 yards on four receptions to include his two touchdowns. Snyder also led the Chiefs on the ground running for 101 yards on 15 carries. Monacan’s victory over the Falcons would’ve opened the door for Hanover to sneak into the eighth seed, but Atlee defeated the Hawks last night which knocked Hanover out of playoff contention. With Eastern View besting King George, Monacan is locked in to the second seed. The Chiefs play Powhatan in their region quarter-final match up.
Thomas Dale: The Knights were able to continue their destructive war path against Prince George winning at home by a score of 28-20. For Thomas Dale it was their fifth-consecutive win since losing to Dinwiddie back on September 28. An 8-2 finish gives them the third seed in Region 6B where the Knights have a region quarter-final match up against Cosby. The first-round has been kind to Thomas Dale over the last four seasons. The Knights have been able to advance out of the first week of the playoffs in each of the last four seasons.
– Brandon Mitchell