Coming off a lopsided loss to Lawrence County High in the regular-season finale, R.A. Hubbard’s postseason fate didn’t appear promising.
With an uncharacteristic 6-4 record, R.A. Hubbard opened the Class 1A football playoffs on the road — and as an underdog — at 10th-ranked Collinsville.
Guess someone forgot to tell the Chiefs about that underdog perception.
R.A. Hubbard pulled off the upset, beating Collinsville 18-15, and now one of the area’s most storied football programs is back in familiar position: Making a run in the playoffs.
But that underdog perception likely won’t go away this week. Not with third-ranked Marion County (10-1) up next.
Marion County, the defending Class 1A state champion, was ranked No. 1 on the Alabama Sports Writers Association poll for almost the entire season. Marion County dropped to No. 3 after suffering a 21-17 upset to Red Bay in the regular-season finale, but the Red Raiders responded with an 83-6 win against Meek in the opening round of the playoffs.
Marion County returns several star players from last season’s state championship team, including all-state running back Justin Sanderson. But for R.A. Hubbard, there is a silver lining.
R.A. Hubbard played Marion County closer than any team during the 2011 postseason, losing to the Red Raiders 34-30 in the first round of the playoffs.
Comparing apples to oranges? Perhaps. But then again, maybe not.
Last season, R.A. Hubbard was one of the few teams in Class 1A that could match Marion County’s speed. That has not changed.
R.A. Hubbard running back John Owens is one of the area’s most explosive playmakers, and the Chiefs have enough speed on defense to limit Marion County’s big plays.
Pairings set: When Danville girls basketball coach Paul Wilson started The Lady Hawks Thanksgiving Classic five years ago, his goal was to create one of the area’s marquee girls basketball tournaments.
The tournament has grown in recent years, drawing perennial powers from across northwest Alabama.
Wilson has put together another strong 16-team field this year’s tournament, which begins Nov. 21. Here are the opening-round pairings: Decatur vs. Danville; Lawrence County vs. Cold Springs; Good Hope vs. Hartselle; Brewer vs. East Lawrence; Austin vs. Rogers; Oneonta vs. Hatton; Priceville vs. Holly Pond; Lexington vs. West Morgan.
New digs: Fans attending high school basketball games will notice something different this season:
There’s an extra black and white striped jersey in the gymnasium.
According to a new Alabama High School Athletic Association rule, the home team’s scorekeeper has to wear a referee’s jersey.
More preps: For more high school sports, including live football playoff updates on Friday, follow @DecaturPreps on Twitter. Also visit tnvalleypreps.com for high school sports stories from across northwest Alabama.
|High School Sports||@DecaturPreps|