Weekend walk-through: Virginia
Thursday, September 23, 2010; 4:35 PM
Prince William game to watch: No. 15 Battlefield (4-0) at Hylton (3-0), Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Battlefield, the current Prince William County power, will face the county's most decorated program, with both teams entering the game unbeaten for the first time in the series' six-year history.
Hylton went 106-11 from 1998 through 2006 and won state titles in 1998, '99 and 2002 but has slipped to 15-16 the past three years. Battlefield, a reigning Virginia AAA Division 6 semifinalist, has gone 31-4 the past three seasons and with the 4-0 start has won 33 consecutive regular season games.
So even though this is a non-district game, the matchup has a bit of a playoff feel and gravity to it, with the older Hylton players having lost to Battlefield by six points in each of the last two years.
Another nugget: Battlefield's last regular season loss was in the 2007 opener to Potomac, a team coached by Tony Lilly, who is now in his first year at Hylton.
"I think pretty much anybody in the program has an understanding of the history of the program, but I think they're really more focused right now on kind of making their own mark," Lilly said. "Things are going their way right now, and they're taking a little bit of pride in it being their time. Like I told the kids, this is why we play, [for] the opportunity to play in big games like this."
Hylton is 3-0 for the first time since 2006, thanks in great part to the quartet of quarterback Dominique Miller (613 passing yards, 10 total touchdowns), receivers Deandre Sangster and Jaleel Dukes (11 catches each) and receiver-defensive back Iric Harris (five interceptions). Harris has scored on a 90-yard pass, 29-yard interception return and 40-yard run. All are seniors except for Dukes, a junior.
Lilly considers Miller a true cornerback or receiver - he caught a touchdown pass in the Bulldogs' 13-7 loss to Battlefield last season - but his athleticism and maturity are just what the coach was looking for in his quarterback.
"He probably has one of the highest football IQs of any player I've coached," Lilly said. "He brings that to the field and he understands as far as my communication with him that I've given him the green light to get me out of a bad play [call] if he sees something. He understands the defense and what they're trying to take away."
Battlefield senior running back Nagee Jackson has scored a rushing touchdown in each game.
Around Prince William/Stafford
Osbourn senior quarterback Dominique Terrell, who transferred from Osbourn Park in August, will face his old team Friday night. Terrell racked up 299 offensive yards and threw for two touchdowns and ran for another last season in a 28-26 win over Osbourn that snapped a five-game losing streak in the series.
"It's going to be real weird because I played with them two years and played against Osbourn," Terrell said. "I talk to [Osbourn Park players] all the time. Even though it's my old school, I've still got to play."
Osbourn Park will be facing its third straight unbeaten opponent after losing to Battlefield and Hylton. ...