By Jake Evans:
This Friday night, the 6A White Station Spartans will travel to Tom Nix Stadium to face the D2 AAA Christian Brothers Purple Wave. Both teams are coming into this matchup coming off of Week 2 losses on the road. Christian Brothers fell to Bob Jones, out of Madison, AL by a score of 17-16, while White Station lost to DeSoto Central of Southaven, MS, 27-6. White Station is still winless, while Christian Brothers has a 1-1 record, thanks to a 7-0 Week 1 win over Grenada.
Christian Brothers is expected to be in a rebuilding year, after losing 30 seniors this past season. They lost two of their top three rushers, seven of their top eight receivers, and nine defensive starters. To say that the Purple Wave is inexperienced, is an understatement. However, they did bring back arguably the best DL duo in the state, with Georgia commit Bill Norton, and Vanderbilt commit Christian James. They put up roughly 185 yards on the ground every game last year, with a very downhill run game. This year though, junior Al Wooten and senior Will Ruth will provide a thunder and lightning type of ground attack. Ruth missed most of last season with a leg injury, and Wooten spent almost the entire year at the bottom of the depth chart. However, he did earn the starting job by the end, taking the majority of the carries in the state semifinal game versus Montgomery Bell Academy. With that, the Purple Wave is working with very little experience in the backfield.
The Christian Brothers defense has been solid so far this season, shutting out Grenada in week 1, and only giving up 243 yards, and only allowing 17 points to 7A Bob Jones last week, the 13th best team in Alabama. The Purple Wave will be tested this week in their first in-state game.
White Station has been subpar on the road in recent years, only winning three of their nine road games last season. They’ve spent most of this young season working from behind, recovering from poor first halves. If they can’t stop Christian Brothers’ thunder and lightning offense early, they could be fighting the clock and the Purple Wave for most of the night. The Spartans are likely to have their hands full with Christian Brothers’ defensive line, making every offensive play crucial. They’ve only scored a combined 20 points in two games this season, a number that will need to be much higher to take down the Purple Wave at home.
Kickoff is at 7 PM at Tom Nix Stadium on August 31st.