Waterford and Southern Have High Stakes Meeting

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The TVC-Hocking is in for a good one this Friday when the Waterford Wildcats put their 14-game conference winning streak on the line against the high-powered Southern Tornadoes.

Waterford (6-1, 5-0) boasts the most explosive offensive in the conference. Averaging a ridiculous 35 points per game, the Wildcats can hurt teams through the air with the arm of Peyton Stephens who torched South Gallia for 172 yards and two touchdowns, and on the ground in Braden Bellville who complemented Stephens with 177 yards and three touchdowns of his own.

The Tornadoes (5-2, 3-2) also have a high-powered offense only second to the Wildcats averaging 31 PPG. The Tornadoes have wreaked havoc with their dual quarterback system led by Logan Drummer and Dylan Smith. Drummer and Smith connected twice for touchdowns last week against Trimble. Those two, plus star running back Riley Roush have the capabilities to give Waterford’s defense fits.

Unfortunately for the Tornadoes, that high powered offense has not fared well against the conference’s more elite defenses. They may have been able to drop 55 and 41 points against Federal Hocking and Belpre respectively, but the Tornadoes looked more like summer breezes facing strong defenses in losses to Miller (22-0) and Trimble (21-12), and this week they face their toughest defense to date.

Waterford has the number one ranked defense in Region 27 only allowing 11 PPG. The Wildcats also get after it on defense and have shown it in their last two performances limiting Eastern and South Gallia to 67 and 87 yards apiece.

Southern’s defense will certainly have their hands full this week trying to contain the Wildcats. After allowing Max Hooper to run for 132 yards and a touchdown last week the purple and gold will need to step it up if they plan on stopping the over 1,000-yard rusher Bellville.

For either team to win this week, each team needs to get the playmakers rolling early. Waterford will to look to implement its run game so they can set up that Bellville screen they love so much. Southern needs to be aggressive through the air. Smith, Roush and Drummer’s athleticism and versatility will create mismatches against Waterford’s secondary.

Waterford is only three wins away from repeating as conference champs. Southern is on the bubble for a playoff spot. The stakes are high in this one.