Neighbors Renew Rivalry in FNL Game of the Week

By: Wes Boling Email
By: Wes Boling Email
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KNOXVILLE (WVLT) - Take a trip down Dutchtown Road in West Knoxville, and you'll find two schools only half a mile apart.

But Webb School and Christian Academy of Knoxville share more than just a street. They're both oustanding private schools with top-notch athletic programs, and, this year, talented football teams. And Friday night, those teams willl share a field for only the third time.

The first two meetings weren't pretty. In 2001 and 2002, during the fledgling years of the Warriors' program, Webb beat CAK 46-3 and 35-0, respectively.

But times have changed for the Warriors. They're 5-0 for the first time in program history, despite residing in one of the state's toughest divisions, the vaunted Region 2-2A.

"We've never been undefeated and ranked and getting the attention that we're getting," said CAK coach Rusty Bradley.

Meanwhile, Webb is reeling after two difficult losses, a 28-7 defeat at the hands of archrival Catholic and a surprising 57-21 setback to upstart Ensworth last week.

For the Spartans to keep reasonable playoff hopes, they must beat CAK.

"Right now we've got to win every game, we've got to prepare to win every game," said coach David Meske. "We have two losses, and we have to come back from that. We're playing the toughest schedule in East Tennessee."

That schedule got a little juicier this year when the neighbors decided to compete on the gridiron.

"I have a couple friends over there who talk a lot about this game," Webb running back Brandt Campbell said. "They think they're gonna come out there and beat us."

In order to defeat their streetmate, Bradley says his team must treat the game like any other.

"Our kids knowing a lot of their kids, and their kids knowing a lot of our kids, I think it adds an element of excitement because you know who you're playing," Bradley said. "But I think all that will die down and it will become just another football game."

You can find highlights and analysis of the Webb-CAK game, as well as several other games, on Friday Night Lights Friday at 11pm. You can also find extended highlights and game articles on VolunteerTV.com.


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