Games of the Year, No. 11: 3A Powerhouses Carthage, Chapel Hill Collide in Huge Pre-District Test
Not many teams have had Carthage’s number in recent seasons, but Chapel Hill is definitely the top candidate for that distinction.
Chapel Hill throttled Carthage 46-14 in a 2010 meeting that snapped Carthage’s 30-game winning streak, which was the second-longest in the state at the time behind Lake Travis. Then Chapel Hill won 21-20 a year ago -- surviving a last-minute Carthage two-point conversion attempt that would have won the game -- to give Carthage its first loss in Bulldog Stadium, which opened in 2008. That remains Carthage’s only loss in Bulldog Stadium as the 2008-10 Class 3A Division II state champions are 21-1 in the facility.
But with almost its entire Class 3A Division I championship-winning offense gone -- and most of its defense, too -- Chapel Hill must host Sept. 14 a Carthage team ranked in the top three in Class 3A by multiple publications. Only a few familiar faces will start the season for the defending D-I champs, such as two-way standouts Tre Allen and Joseph Clark. But Carthage welcomes back most of its front seven, plus former Elysian Fields defensive tackle Isaiah Golden, a 6-2, 315-pound Texas A&M commit who should give even more protection to senior middle linebacker Trent Jackson, who is back after recording 153 tackles in 2011.
Another interesting note about these teams is they essentially traded places with each other after UIL realignment. Chapel Hill moved to the “District of Doom,” District 16-3A, while Carthage was shipped south into Region III and becomes a Division I playoff representative, like Chapel Hill has been the past two seasons.
Top 25 Games of the Year