A year ago, Blacksburg High School backed into the state 3A playoffs with a 5-5 mark and as a pure underdog. After winning four straight playoff games, they shocked the ward and brought home the state championship.
This year, the expectations are a little different. Blacksburg moved up to the 4A classification and has dominated opponents en route to a 9-1 mark and the top seed in the West region. They have also have secured the home field advantage throughout the playoffs, and Friday night’s contest against Jefferson Forest will be the first playoff game ever played at the newer Bill Brown Stadium.
Of course, the Bruins have one of the most excited running backs in the state of Virginia. Cole Beck, who has committed to Virginia Tech,
He scored twice and rushed for 172 in just two quarters in Friday night’s regular season finale against Christiansburg. On the season, Beck has rushed for 1,443 yards.
Back on the offensive side for the Bruins, Johnston has thrown 107 for 169 this season for 1,554 yards. The junior QB has 22 touchdowns. His favorite target has been Tiquest Terry who has caught 35 passes for 595 yards with 11 touchdowns so half of Johnston’s scores have been on the Terry connection.
Jefferson Forest s 5-5 this season, but has outscored their opponents 401 to 368. They have lost to Staunton River 44-27, G.W. Danville 57-26, E.C. Glass 57-36, Brookville 42-21, and Heritage 42-38.
Wins have come over Magna Vista (29-19), Liberty (48-26), Liberty Christian (49-12), Amherst (41-40 in OT) and Rustburg (56-20).
Caleb Smith rushed 24 times for 174 yards in JF’s Friday night contest with Heritage.
Just down the road in Riner, Auburn will also have an opportunity to play in the postseason. They will spend the first Friday night on the road in Covington.
Auburn, who is the fifth seed at 4-6, had wins this season over Craig County (29-0), Eastern Montgomery (15-14), Bland (35-28) and Rural Retreat (31-7). All six of their losses came to playoff bound teams.
The Eagles have been outscored 246 to 149 this season.
Opening round brackets:
Region D, 4A
- (1) Blacksburg (9-1) vs. (8) Jefferson Forest (5-5)
- (2) George Washington (9-1) vs. (7) Amherst (6-4)
- (3) Salem (8-2) vs. (6) William Byrd (9-1)
- (4) E.C. Glass (7-3) vs. (5) Charlottesville (7-3)
Region D, 3A
- (1) Staunton River (10-0) vs. (8) Tunstall (3-7)
- (2) Lord Botetourt (8-2) vs. (7) Cave Spring (2-8)
- (3) Magna Vista (7-3) vs. (6) Alleghany (4-6)
- (4) Northside (4-6) vs. (5) Abingdon (6-4)
Region C, 2A
- Glenvar (9-1) vs. (8) Richlands (4-6)
- Appomattox (9-1) vs. (7) Martinsville (5-5)
- Giles (8-2) vs. (6) Ft. Chiswell (7-3)
- Floyd (8-2) vs. (5) Gretna (8-2)
Region C, 1A
- Narrows (9-1) vs. (8) Rural Retreat (2-8)
- Galax (7-3) vs. (7) Bland (3-7)
- George Wythe (6-4) vs. (6) Parry McCluer (4-6)
- Covington (7-3) vs. (5) Auburn (4-6)