By JOSH VARDAMAN
Christ Presbyterian Academy endures its final non-league matchup of the season Friday against Ensworth.
Father Ryan takes on defending Division II-AA state runner-up Montgomery Bell Academy.
Fairview will put its undefeated record on the line at Hickman County.
See below for a closer look at those matchups:
Ensworth (3-2) at Christ Presbyterian Academy (1-3), 7 p.m. Friday
This season has not been what Christ Presbyterian Academy is used to.
After losing just three games combined over the last three seasons, the Lions lost their third this year in Week 4, getting shut out 41-0 by Pearl Cohn.
Things don’t get easier this week for CPA, as Ensworth comes calling.
Last season’s matchup between the two teams was the Lions’ only regular season loss. The Tigers won 24-14.
The score may not be as close this season, as CPA has struggled on both sides of the ball all year while Ensworth may be finding its stride. Last week against Pope John Paul II, Tiger running back Nicky Clifton led the offense with 131 rushing yards and two scores in their 24-13 win.
The Lions have scored just 42 points this season, good for a 10.5 points-per-game average, and are giving up 32.75 per game. Thirty-five of their points scored came in their only win of the season over White House Heritage.
While they may not come away with a win, CPA can benefit from playing a tough Ensworth team by getting more experience for a young team.
Fairview (4-0) at Hickman County (2-3), 7 p.m. Friday
The Fairview Yellowjackets’ undefeated streak rolls into Hickman County this week.
Prior to last week’s bye, the Yellowjackets squeaked by Waverly Central 27-26 week to keep their undefeated season alive.
They were led by senior running back Jake Beathard, who rushed for 107 yards and three touchdowns.
Hickman County may not present as tough of a contest for Fairview this week as Waverly did in Week 4. The Bulldogs come in losers of three games in a row in which they have given up 55, 48 and 47 points.
Beathard and the Yellowjackets will hope their offense, averaging 28 points per game, will do as other teams have done against Hickman County: run the ball effectively.
Defensively, Fairview will again look to feast on an inferior Bulldog unit. Their offense goes into Friday fresh off being shut out by Waverly Central last week.
Father Ryan (3-2, 0-2) vs. Montgomery Bell Academy (4-1, 1-0), 7 p.m. Friday*
The Father Ryan Fightin’ Irish got back to their winning ways last week with a big 34-7 win over Evangelical Christian.
The road gets tough from here on out for the Irish, though.
Montgomery Bell Academy rolls into FRHS riding a four-game win streak after losing to Alabama’s Hewitt-Trussville in Week 1. During their winning streak the Big Red have scored at least 42 points in every game and are beating teams by an average of 36.5 points per game.
Friday’s matchup will be a battle of two rushing attacks. Both Father Ryan and MBA want to run the ball offensively, so both defenses will have to come prepared to fight in the trenches.
The Irish will mainly throw three running backs – Jay Shoop, Jackson Byrd and Elton Nkwembe – into the mix offensively.
The Big Red, however, rely on one workhorse back to guide them: senior University of Tennessee commit Ty Chandler. He has already rushed this season for 760 yards and 18 touchdowns on 70 carries.
If Father Ryan fails to beat MBA, its schedule doesn’t get much easier over the duration of the regular season.
The Irish still have games left at Spring Hill (4-1), at Brentwood Academy (4-1), at home against Ensworth (3-2) and at Baylor (4-1).
Friday’s contest kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday at Father Ryan.