Friday’s Football Focus

September 18, 2013 

This week

The Hodgin Cup: Chapel Hill at East Chapel Hill

The game: The winner gets the Chapel Hill News’ Hodgin Cup, named by the CHN in honor of Bill Hodgin, a former football coach at Chapel Hill High who was also the first athletic director at East Chapel Hill High School. Victory this year will be even more precious to the winner. Chapel Hill is 0-3 for the first time since 2009, while East Chapel Hill (1-3) hasn’t beaten Chapel Hill since 2003.

Chapel Hill did not play well in its only other road game this year, a 37-13 loss at South Granville, where the Tigers struggled to stop running back Sean Bowman. But East hasn’t been tearing up the turf, averaging 123 yards a game rushing. The game may hinge of which defense gives up the fewest big plays, and on the performances of young quarterbacks – Chapel Hill’s Grant Deselm and East’s Connor Stough.

Last year: Darius Allen’s second-half touchdown runs of 56 and 14 yards were enough to spark a sputtering Chapel Hill offense and lead the Tigers to their ninth straight win over East Chapel Hill, 19-6. A goal-line stand by CHHS midway through the fourth quarter set up a dramatic finish. Alex Duncan, who had a 13-yard touchdown catch for Chapel Hill in the first half, killed East Chapel Hill’s last drive by picking off a pass and returning it to the Wildcat’s 43-yard line with 1:50 left to play.

Game time: 7 p.m.

The Series

1996: CHHS 29, East7

1997: East 28, CHHS 14

1998: East 24, CHHS 21

1999: CHHS 12, East 0

2000: CHHS 35, East 0

2001: CHHS 27, East 21

2002: CHHS 37, East 28

2003: East 27, CHHS 20

2004: CHHS 20, East 0

2005: CHHS 14, East 0

2006: CHHS 41, East 7

2007: CHHS 28, East 14

2008: CHHS 37, East 0

2009: CHHS 14, East 7

2010: CHHS 40, East 28

2011: CHHS 31, East 10

2012: CHHS 19, East 6

Carrboro at South Granville

The Jaguars (3-1) are coming off a regular-season loss for the first time in more than a year, while South Granville (2-1) is looking strong after a 42-0 win over Oxford Webb. The key to the Vikings’ success is Sean Bowman, another in a long line of running backs who have benefited from excellent blocking up front. South Granville head coach Mike Hobgood played at Northern Durham and later coached there as an assistant under Ken Browning, so he is a firm believer in the Knights’ of old smash-mouth football.

Game time: 7:30 p.m.

Northwood, Orange, Cedar Ridge ... are all off this Friday, giving them a little bit of extra time to get ready for the following week’s entry into Carolina-8 Conference play. Northwood (4-0) and Orange (4-0) will square off on Sept. 27. That same night, Cedar Ridge (0-4) will play at Cardinal Gibbons (3-1), which also has this Friday off.


Colby Owens, a two-way starter for East Chapel Hill, has been named to the South roster for the The Blue-Grey National All-Star Classic that will be played Jan. 11 at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Raymond James Stadium.

“The team for the South is loaded, we’ve assembled a great group of players so far,” South coach Mark McMillian said.

Owens is a bruising, 6-foot, 1-inch, 235 running back and defensive lineman for the Wildcats.


On the Hodgin Cup ...

“A win would be a huge boost for us. If we could get a win against a cross-town rival, that wold be awesome.”

Jon Sherman, East Chapel Hill

“The guys know what’s at stake. Our players are getting ready to hold on to something that matters.”

Issac Marsh, Chapel Hill

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