High School Football

Football: 'Battle of 840' pits Page, Fairview in opener

Nolensville opens on the road at Antioch

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Cade Walker

Page senior quarterback Cade Walker will lead the Patriots into Fairview during the Battle of 840 Friday night in Week 1.

Talk about rivalries.

Page and Fairview, long cast as the “other” high schools in Williamson County, have been battling for years, long before the travel between the two schools was cut in half by the completion of the roadway that gave a name to the contest.

It is a rivalry done right – a contest between two teams, two schools and two communities that respect each other. It doesn’t hurt that over the past 10 years the record stands at 5-5.

As good as the rivalry is, Yellow Jackets coach Chris Hughes, dean of high school football coaches in Williamson County, is not sure he likes it being the first game of the year.

“I hate to have it the first game,” he said earlier this week. “Page is the toughest team on our schedule. Good litmus test for our team. If we can hang with Page, we’re ready; if not, it’s a struggle.”

For all of Hughes’ concerns, Fairview is no slouch; the Jackets haven’t missed the playoffs in years and are defending Region 6-3A champs. But Page is bigger.

“We’ve got a top ten Class 5A team, and a rival, coming in,” said Hughes. “They’ve got a three-headed monster in Cade Walker, Miles Bonn and Bubba Johnson. You stop one the other two can beat you. And they are solid and aggressive on defense.”

Page’s Charles Rathbone, another veteran mentor, thinks playing this game to start the season is a good move, but playing at Fairview makes it tougher.

“You don’t have to worry about the team getting up to play Fairview," he said. "But first games usually come down to first week mistakes that you don’t see later in the year.”

Rathbone’s worries center around Logan Nardozzi, who rushed for nearly 1,300 yards last year for Fairview, and pre-season all-state linebacker Logan Parsons, who recorded more than 100 tackles last year.

After years of experience, Rathbone and the Patriots know they are going into hostile territory.

“It’s much tougher to play down there, in the hole,” he said.

It’s a fact that excites Hughes.

“(Being at home) helps more than I can put into words to be at home," Hughes said. "Having our home crowd with is a big reason I think we have a chance.”

Nolensville at Antioch

The Knights look to start their fourth year on a positive note as standout Tim Coutras leads a squad that finished 7-5 last year and second in a very rugged Region 4-4A. They start their march to a potential regional title against Antioch, a Class 6A team that went winless last year. 

2019 Williamson Herald High School Football Media Guide

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