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Staunton River laced by Lancers; aims at Rustburg

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By Mike Forster

Staunton River took a beating at the hands of a juggernaut and now turns its attention to its best chance at a win this season.

This past Friday, Amherst County faced off with the Eagles in Moneta. The rain and the muck did little to slow down the high flying Lancers as they topped Staunton River 55-14. The rain and the muck, however, did much to suppress the size of the crowd. Those who did attend were treated to a glimpse of the Amherst machine that has been treating opponents like Rosie O'Donnell treats a rack of ribs.

Without picking up a single yard via the air, the Lancers churned out over 450 yards. Peter Rose provided much of the fireworks as he blazed his way to a pair of touchdowns. He was joined in the scoring parade by Josh Braxton and John Moore, who each added a couple of TDs.

Staunton River showed that it has some firepower of its own as it was able to put up two touchdowns of its own. Both tallies came courtesy of freshman quarterback Cody Jones. The Eagles thus joined GW-Danville as the only other team to score more than a single time in a game with the Lancers.

Jones' first touchdown was a thing of beauty. The sdfka;lfkjqweojweasew. While it's true that Amherst is the fastest team around, young Jones showed that his speed is certainly at the Lancers' level. For the game, Jones gained 110 yards on the ground, more than any other TEAM that Amherst has faced this year, with the exception of GW-Danville (115 rushing yards).

Of note for future Amherst opponents: the Lancers played a very clean, nearly mistake-free game. That they were able to do so in the sloppy conditions may be indicative that it has overcome its (sole) Achilles' heel.

Seemingly no worse for the wear, the Eagles now face their season finale still searching for the elusive first victory of the season. Their opponent is Rustburg and both teams sport identical 0-9 records (0-5, Seminole).

Call this one what you will: "Battle of the Basement" or "The Goose Egg Bowl," this writer prefers to call it "The Gritty Bowl." The fact is, both of these teams bring a level of determination that is hard to find elsewhere. Undermanned and undersized, the squads have put up some solid games, despite their lowly records.

The Devils, in particular, had legitimate chances to win their most recent two games, against Forest and Liberty. Having settled on Tyler Morris as its quarterback, Rustburg can now employ speedy Tevin Cobbs from a number of dangerous positions.

The Devils are tough as nails, featuring hard-running Javon Campbell and hard-hitting Mike Kirby.

Staunton River, for its part, looks to be getting more comfortable with its spread offense. Jones showed a tremendous amount of poise. One year removed from middle school, Jones found himself facing the defending state champions. He seemed as calm as if he was playing a backyard pick-up game.

If the Eagles can use their speed (including Geary Cunningham, Kenny Montgomery, Al Dillon and James Bell) and if they can contain the big break-aways (as the did for most of the first half against Amherst), they should get the win. Having Allen Sinclair back would be a great boon to Staunton River.

If the Devils can get the right matchups for Cobbs and can exploit the middle of the Staunton River defense on the ground, the game should go to them.

One thing is for sure. One of these teams will end the season without knowing the taste of victory. However, you should know that it is not due to a lack of effort, commitment or toughness.