Sampson Independent

Gridiron preview: Week 2

We’re already in Week 2 of the young 2018 high school football season. As hard as that may be to believe, there is still a ways yet to go. While week 1 helped shed a little light on how some area football teams’ seasons may shape up, it also left some schools with more questions than answers.

Let’s break down this week’s matchups.

Union vs South Robeson

Union is coming off an emotional loss last week against Midway in a game where literally a few more seconds could have yielded a different outcome. Prior to the start of the game, the Union coaching staff felt that the Raiders were one of the best looking teams at the jamboree a week earlier, so perhaps they can at least take solace in knowing that they pushed them to the brink. In week 2, the Union Spartans play host to the South Robeson Mustangs, a team out of the Three Rivers 1A/2A Conference participating in their season opener. Though the Mustangs went 3-9 overall last season, they bested the Spartans in last year’s contest, 32-6. Improvement is a topic that has come up repeatedly for Union so week 2 will see if the Spartans have done any improving. Game time is 7 p.m.

Midway vs Princeton

Coming off last week’s heroic win against the Spartans should have the Raiders fired up as they return to Spivey’s Corner for their home opener. Princeton and Midway have certainly combined for some interesting games over the past few seasons. The Bulldogs took last year’s contest rather decisively by a 41-21 score while Midway took a high-scoring barnburner in 2016, 55-54. Tonight’s matchup should add more excitement to the series between these two as both enter the game at 1-0, Princeton coming off a big win against Smithfield-Selma, 44-6. Game time is 7 p.m.

Lakewood @ Heide Trask

Lakewood kicked off their season last week in impressive fashion with a dominating victory over Pender and now make the trip back down to neighboring Trask. The Titans had a successful 2017, going 8-3, but failed to score a single point last week against Topsail. While the Leopards are coming off a big win and the Titans a big loss, this game should be intriguing as both teams seem to be in a rebuilding phase. Game time at Trask is 7 p.m.

Hobbton @ Chatham Central

The Wildcats are coming off a crushing loss last week at the hands of 2A Goldsboro. Hobbton failed to score a single point as turnovers plagued the Wildcats in a 56-0 shellacking. With a week to stew on how that game transpired, Hobbton is set to hit the road once again when they travel to take on Chatham Central tonight. The Bears are also coming off a big loss at the hands of Wake Christian Academy so both teams will be hungry for that first win. Game time is set for 7 p.m.

Clinton @ East Bladen (Game of the Week)

This week’s Game of the Week is between hometown Clinton and the East Bladen Eagles. For the second straight year, the Dark Horses are coming off a season-opening loss at the hands of Cape Fear. How will they respond this time? In 2017, East Bladen was a part of Clinton’s 0-3 start as they bested the Dark Horses 35-16. Last week, Clinton was held scoreless so they’re gonna be hungry to find the end zone, let alone get the “W.” With the two schools having been former conference foes, tonight’s contest should prove to be an entertaining battle. Game time is set for 7:30 p.m.

Be sure to see this weekend’s edition for a full recap of the Clinton-East Bladen matchup, as well as summaries of the other area schools’ games. For a comprehensive wrapup of the rest of Friday’s action with photos, coaches’ reactions and season outlook, see Tuesday’s edition and check out
Clinton’s J’Daques Wallace steps in front of a pass to get an interception during Cape Fear last week. The Horses hit the road again to face East Bladen in the Game of the Week.’s J’Daques Wallace steps in front of a pass to get an interception during Cape Fear last week. The Horses hit the road again to face East Bladen in the Game of the Week.
Midway, Lakewood look to start streaks; others hoping for first W

By Daron Barefoot

Sports Editor