Last season, the Cardinals defeated the Raiders 31-30 in overtime and extended their winning streak to three games in the series.
“Last year, I thought they were a good team,” Jonesboro football coach Tim Floyd said. “They were learning how to win and you can definitely see how it has paid off for them this year. They were athletic and hungry which is a big plus when you are trying to get a program going in the right direction.”
However, Riverdale has a 22-6 edge in the all-time series but Jonesboro is currently the hotter team, winning each of its last four games by double digits.
Last Friday, the Cardinals (6-1 overall, 2-1 sub-region 4B-AAAA) defeated Spalding 32-7 behind two rushing touchdowns and a receiving TD from Cameron Sutton.
“I know teams have to prepare for him to find out where he is at all times,” said Floyd of Sutton, who had a 15-yard and 70-yard TD run out of the Wildcat formation. “With us being able to put him in the Wildcat position, you have to account for that.
“And at the same time he can throw the ball, we just haven’t had him throw it yet,” Floyd said. “Being able to move him around most definitely gives us a few more options on offense.”
Kenneth Hillman and Dereon London also reached the end zone for Jonesboro.
“We really need to make sure that we come out with a lot of intensity,” Floyd said. “Because I know they are going to be fired up and ready to play because they lost a heartbreaker to us last year and it’s a cross-town team. We have to match their physical play too.”
Also last Friday, Riverdale had a successful outing, holding off Upson-Lee for a 36-23 victory and improving to 6-2 overall and 3-1 in league play. Asania Aderhold threw for 234 yards and two touchdowns. Kamhad Magwood (122 rushing yards) ran for a TD and caught another, and Isa Muhammad returned an interception for a score.
“They have some playmakers and anytime you have playmakers you want to get the ball in their hands in space so they can make some plays,” Floyd said.
On Friday, Drew will face winless Mt. Zion.