Now that’s what you call an economic stimulus plan.
Two rivals with an intense dislike for one another play football each year, and they do so in one of the few Western North Carolina communities that still has a huge manufacturing base.
Crowd sizes often exceed 10,000. It’s a make-or-break night for the host’s athletic finances. The 50-50 raffle pot was in the $7,000 range for 2015.
Lo and behold, both Pisgah (6-0, 2-0) and Tuscola (6-0, 2-0) could still be undefeated when they tangle Oct. 14 in Canton.
Next week is next week though.
And if the definition of a “trap game” includes an opponent who has been overlooked, then neither side of the Haywood County rivalry should make that mistake Friday with road games in Henderson County.
The Black Bears lost to West Henderson (3-3, 1-1) by a 16-12 score last year. Tuscola also fell at home to North Henderson (3-3, 1-1) by a count of 17-14.
“Probably the best thing for both us and Tuscola is that this is a week that got both of us,” Pisgah coach Brett Chappell said.
“We’ll certainly address it (Monday) at practice. These are kids, and I’m sure there have been conversations over the weekend and even the past few weeks about this. But all that pageantry isn’t going to be nearly as much if both of our teams don’t take care of business this Friday.”
Now in his fourth year at Pisgah, Chappell achieved his 100th career win last Friday against Franklin, 29-23. Tanner Wike passed for 107 yards and three touchdowns, with Trey Morgan accounting for 104 yards and all three scores. Alabama recruit Michael Parrott rushed for 56 yards and one touchdown.
Chappell said he has the utmost respect for the team next in line for the Black Bears, even if West Henderson lost Friday at Smoky Mountain, 41-7.
“The biggest thing to me is they played a really good Mountain Heritage team tough a couple weeks ago,” Chappell said.
“I’ve know they’ve dealt with some injuries since then, but it’s still a very scary team for us. They always play us hard, even before I got here. That score last week is not indicative of the team they have or what we expect Friday night.”