– BY MICHAEL KNIGHT
#2 AFTON (5-0) AT #1 REJOICE CHRISTIAN (6-0)
The Match-Up: Here we go again. For the third straight week, we’ll see the #1 team in a class hosting the #2 team. Two weeks ago, #1 Union beat #2 Owasso in a double OT thriller. Last week, it was #1 Carl Albert defeating #2 Bishop McGuinness in a state title rematch. Now we focus in on Class A as #1 Rejoice Christian will host #2 Afton in a game that could end up deciding the district champion and will shine a light on how serious both of these teams are as state title contenders. #1 Rejoice comes into the game after back to back weeks of scoring 50+ points in blowout wins. Meanwhile, Afton has been blowing out teams all season and appear to be just as dominant on offense as they were a year ago. However, the Eagles don’t appear to be as stellar on defense like we saw a year ago. Both teams come into this match-up with prolific offenses. Don’t be surprised if these two teams end up in an absolute shootout. Both teams definitely have the firepower to play in a shootout.
The Players: When you look at the playmakers in this match-up, you can’t help but start with Afton. And more specifically, you have to start with quarterback Wil Amos. Led by Amos, Afton’s offense has scored 50 points or more in four of their five games this year. Their lowest point total was 36, in a 22-point victory on September 8th. Amos is without a doubt a running quarterback and does the majority of damage on the ground. Last year, Amos ran for over 2,000 yards from the quarterback position. Rejoice will counter with a dynamic runner of their own. Junior Andrew Crow has emerged as a star for Rejoice Christian this year. On both sides of the ball, Crow has made a big impact as Rejoice has started the season 6-0 for the second straight year. Crow is the main guy in the backfield for the Eagles after splitting carries a season ago. He’s responded well to the added workload.
The History: These two teams have met in district play in each of the last three seasons. Afton holds the edge with a 2-1 record against the Eagles from Rejoice during that time. In each Afton victory, they’ve been dominant with blowouts. The lone Rejoice Christian win came in 2015 when Rejoice won an high-scoring affair, 59-52. Afton returned the favor last year by shutting out Rejoice 41-0. That was one of four shutouts for Afton in 2016.