WHO: Alleghany Cougars (2-0) at Rockbridge County Wildcats (0-2)
WHERE: Rockbridge County High School
WHEN: Friday, September 8, 2023, at 7:00 pm
LAST SEASON: Alleghany Cougars (N/A, Inaugural Year), Rockbridge County Wildcats (4-6)
The Alleghany Cougars Varsity Football Team is off to a tremendous start this season. In week one, fans were treated to Purcel Turner returning the opening kick for a 95-yard Alleghany touchdown. Then, in week two, history repeated itself when Hunter DePriest then returned the opening kick for 90-yard Alleghany touchdown. With week three approaching, Rockbridge might consider receiving the ball if they win the coin toss.
There’s no doubt about it. Cat scratch fever has set in and the whole community seems to be behind the Alleghany Cougars! All the anxiety and doubt about the kids not getting along or working together because of the consolidation is quickly becoming a thing of the past and a new future is being paved for the school and community.
So what does that mean for the Alleghany Cougars this week? I tend to think Siemien Brown put it best during his interview following Friday night’s victory against the Fort Defiance Indians. “We just gotta keep the pedal to the metal and keep winning our games, and never be satisfied.” “That’s right!” Evin Chapman agreed.
As far as what to expect this Friday night, I tend to believe the Alleghany Cougars Varsity Football Team will pull off another win and end the night with a 3-0 victory. “I think we’re all ready for next week,” Hunter Depriest said in a post-game interview last Friday night. “… I think we just come out, execute how we’re supposed to, and we’ll be alright.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH (ALLEGHANY COUGARS)
Matthew “Moose” Clayton
ABOUT THE OPPONENT:
The Rockbridge County Wildcats are not complete strangers to the Alleghany High School Varsity Football team, though it’s been a few years. 2019 to be exact. That year, the Wildcats defeated the Mountaineers in a 49-7 upset. However, as they say, it’s a whole new ball game!
In the past four years, any and all players who would have played for either team have since moved on, graduated, or both. In 2019, the Wildcats had an incredible season, ending it with 9-3.
The Wildcats’ head coach, Martin Cox, was appointed in 2022 and is no stranger to football. Cox once played college football for the West Virginia University Mountaineers. It’s a bit ironic that the team Cox is coaching will be playing against a high school who, this time last year, was also called the Mountaineers. No matter which way the pendulum swings, one might consider the result poetic justice. Regardless, as Cox enters his second season of being head coach of the Rockbridge County Wildcats, he is sure to have a game plan when it comes to facing the undefeated Cougars.
Whatever that plan may be, Cox seemed optimistic in a recent interview where he talked about player improvements. “Watching the kids succeed, that’s what it’s all about, just seeing them grow. Seeing the team get better, seeing the individuals become better team players, and just put it all together. There’s nothing like it.”
While Cox is keeping his hopes up with regards to his players this season and, perhaps, his new challenge against the Alleghany Cougars, one thing is for sure. Friday night’s game is sure to be a standoff between which team wants it more and who has the most to prove. Will it be the Rockbridge County Wildcats who have been looking to improve since seasons past or will it be the Alleghany Cougars who are eager to continue their undefeated season?
May the best cat win!
PLAYERS TO WATCH (FORT DEFIANCE INDIANS)