STORY BY CORY WOODROOF | PHOTOS BY STEVE WHEELER (Summit) AND DEB SCALLY (Franklin)
Our Game of the Week story is brought to you by Vanderbilt Orthopaedics.
The Summit Spartans have one fantastic opportunity ahead of them.
The team, piping-hot at 3-0, has a chance to grab a second win this season against Region 6-6A.
The 5A team getting two wins in a class above itself would be a gigantic statement to the rest of its Region 5-5A competitors, one of which is Page High School.
Watch out, here come the Spartans. They are legitimate region title contenders this year.
The Spartans’ 2019 can be summed up in a first: for now, they’re at the top of Spring Hill mountain.
The team beat its down-the-road opponent Independence to start the season, and a week later, topped in-town rival Spring Hill High School to go 2-0 on the season.
“We’re proud of the guys,” Spartans head coach Brian Coleman said about the 2-0 stretch. “This is the first time that we’ve ever beaten Spring Hill and Independence in the same season, so we are excited about that.”
A week later, the team blanketed Columbia Central 34-14 to get that perfect 3-0 notch. This week, they face the Franklin Rebels, who are 1-2 and are trying to grab some momentum for the rest of the year.
The Rebels, to their credit, have had a hard slate so far. Getting the elite Ravenwood Raptors early in the season is no easy feat, and got shut out in that contest.
The team’s Week One thumping of Siegel, a game in which they put up 34 points, has been followed by 10 points in two weeks (10 against Riverdale, 0 against Ravenwood).
New quarterback Guy Lipscomb said after the Ravenwood loss that he feels the team is making progress, but is just struggling to find pay dirt.
“We don’t ever stop fighting and we did a lot of things better in the second half than at the start,” he said last week. “We just couldn’t get in the end zone.”
This week, Franklin will need its offense to find itself once more with perhaps the best Summit team in school history coming to town.
The game is simple: if Summit’s defense can slow down the Rebels offense like Riverdale and Ravenwood did, they an win. If the Rebels find the same groundswell they found against Siegel, it’ll be on the Spartans to ride on guys like Destin Wade and George Odimegwu to get at the Franklin defense.
The Rebels defending last year was like that of a fortress, but in the last two weeks, they’ve allowed too many scoring chances (62 points to be exact). Can they regain their stalwart play against a Summit offense that’s averaging 34.3 points a game this year?
This game is going to mean a lot for both teams.
If Summit wins, they sweep their Region 6-6A opponents and cement themselves as a 4-0 bulldozer for Region 5-5A play.
If Franklin wins, they get some confidence back after a two-game skid and take down a very good Summit squad.
It’s going to be the marquee game of the week in Williamson County, and means a lot for both programs.
That’s why it’s our Game of the Week.
PREDICTION: Summit 27, Franklin 17
The Summit Spartans’ offense is firing on all cylinders right now, so don’t be surprised when they keep up their hot play against Franklin’s evolving defense…maybe not 34 points, but still a good bunch. We anticipate a bit more scoring for the Rebels offense, but Summit’s strong secondary makes a play here and there, and the Spartans get their 4-0 start.
One key factor to watch for here is how Franklin’s defensive line manages Wade’s scrambling. If they bottle him up and force him to throw, this could get a bit tighter. Still, though, we’re with Ole Sparty this week.