There are terrific football games each and every night in the south Charlotte, Matthews and Mint Hill areas. As fans, we know it’s impossible to get to each and every game, but here are six that you don’t want to miss and that we guarantee will be worth the price of admission.
Aug. 17: Charlotte Catholic at Charlotte Christian
Right off the bat, Charlotte Christian and Charlotte Catholic collide at the home of the Knights. The matchup pits the NCISAA 3A champs (Christian) against the NCHSAA 3A champs (Catholic). The teams went a combined 25-1 last season and both are loaded once again. This has been a back-and-forth series with Catholic winning in 2015 (5-3) and last year (19-14) and Christian winning at home in 2016 (20-13). Can the Knights keep the streak going? How will the loser react? We’ll see.
Aug. 24 Mallard Creek at Butler
You know the story with these two heavyweights who have won six championships between them since 2009. The teams have met 12 times since 2011, with the Mavs winning eight games, including 42-9 last year, and five the past six. But it’s at Butler again this year, which is the sight of the ‘Dogs last win in the series. Butler opens with Scotland, Mallard Creek, Richmond and Providence, so a 3-1 start through that gauntlet would be incredible.
Sept. 28: Harding at Providence
This game decided the So. Meck 7 last season and will likely do so again if everything goes as planned for the Panthers. They are expected to be really good again and on Sept. 28 get a shot at beating the defending state champions at their place to close out the month. Harding has put up 100 points in the past two meetings, winning both rincluding last year’s 46-23 victory.
Oct. 5: Myers Park at Butler
This one is sure to be a war and will likely decide the Southwestern 4A championship, although Hickory Ridge and Porter Ridge are both very good. The Mustangs won last year’s playoff battle after getting manhandled in the regular-season meeting. There is no love loss between these two teams, coaches and players, and this is the new conference rivalry after Independence has fallen off. The Mustangs have won 14 of the past 15 games in the series, but I promise they remember the one they lost the most.
Oct. 5: South Meck at Ardrey Kell
Both teams were a little down last season, but both came on toward the end of the year and both expect that momentum to carry over. So do I. This battle took a swing toward Ardrey Kell as the Knights won seven in a row and eight of nine games in the series from 2009 to 2015. But since the teams have split the past four games with the Knights winning 37-26 last year. Whoever wins this game has a shot at being the second- or third-best team in that league probably still behind Harding.
Oct. 26: Providence Day at Charlotte Christian
The Knights opened the season with a must-see matchup and close it with what could be the private school game of the year. Last season the Knights humiliated the Chargers at their place in this matchup as they put up over 600 yards of offense. They also beat them handily two weeks later in the championship game. But this time around, it’s the Chargers who have the highly touted recruits. Either way, if both are as good as I think they are, this will be a war.