Friday Night Preview: Maryville at Oak Ridge

When: Friday

Kickoff: 7:30 p.m.

Records: Maryville (3-1), Oak Ridge (2-2)

Previous meeting: The Rebels led, 7-0, at the half and 14-0 after three quarters before Maryville held off the Wildcats, 21-13, last season at Shields Stadium. The Rebels got one score by way of a Lee Bristol 58-yard interception return, another from a Desmund Horne 80-yard punt return late in the third. Oak Ridge marched to the Maryville 25-yard line with 27 seconds remaining, with the Rebels intercepting the Wildcat quarterback in the end zone on fourth-and-2 to put it away.

Last week: Maryville opened the throttles on the passing game a little more last week, and quarterback Patton Robinette (2) and Austin Canfield (1) both responded with touchdown passes in a 38-3 win over Heritage. Horne had touchdown grabs of 35, 42 and 46 yards as the Rebels were a collective 11-of-18 through the air for 213 yards.

Oak Ridge was too much for Halls, 35-3, last week. Really quick senior running back Rocky Fluud ran for 167 yards on 19 carries, scoring on runs of 33, 5 and 3 yards. Fluud had 131 of his yards in the first half. He’s a good one.

Keep an eye on: This is a really, really good Rebel offensive line, but good enough to power Maryville past the Wildcats for a second consecutive season? The running game from both teams is likely to dominate things early, but Maryville throws better. Horne is on pace for an All-State season and there’s no reason he’ll slow down in this one, the reasons being Romberg, fellow seniors Clarence Langley and Preston Burnett and on and on and on. Pay too much attention to Horne, and they’ll really hurt you. Fluud is super — think Bearden’s Devrin Young, with a little more pop. Halls was keying on Fluud last week, and it didn’t make any difference.

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