Unity downplaying top-ranked showdown

By Aaron Bennett | abennett@wcia.com

Published 09/18 2013 04:28PM

Updated 09/18 2013 06:40PM

TOLONO -- We've got a monster matchup between a couple of the state's No. 1 teams on Friday when the Unity Rockets welcome in the Maroa-Forsyth Trojans.  Both teams reached the state title game last year, and both have picked up right where they left off.

Something will have to give when they take the field in Tolono Friday night.  Both Unity and Maroa-Forsyth have been virtually untested through three weeks, though Tuscola gave Unity a game in Week 2.  The Rockets are No. 1 in Class 3A.  Maroa-Forsyth is No. 1 in Class 2A, setting up a titanic clash this weekend.

"These are the type of games you want to play in and you want to coach in and you want to be a part of," said Unity head coach Scott Hamilton.  "We've done a lot of things with our program over the last 5, 10, 20 years that have put us in situations like this.  If you don't like playing in big games like this, you're probably in the wrong area."

It may be the biggest matchup state-wide Friday night, but the Rockets say this game won't define their season.  Hamilton said they'll use this game as preparation for the postseason.  His players are keeping things in perspective as well.

"It's exciting for a No. 1 against No. 1," senior Tyler Crowl said.  "But it's just like us against Meridian.  It's just another team.  It's just football."

You can bet it won't feel like just another football game, though, on Friday night.  Unity is averaging nearly 45 points per game, while Maroa-Forsyth averages 43 points per game.  The Trojans are led by all-state quarterback Jack Hockaday.

"It never hurts to have a Division I quarterback who is being recruited by the Big Ten all over," Hamilton said.  "And a really good set of skill position guys to go along with him, and a great linebacker in the middle.  My guess is me whining about that isn't going to change anything.  Those kids are still going to show up on Friday."

Unity and Maroa-Forsyth will kick off at 7:00 pm Friday night at Hicks Field in Tolono.

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