Goshen hosts Highland Home for Top 10 showdown
Published 11:38 am Tuesday, September 5, 2023
Things will heat up this Friday, Sept. 8, as the Class 2A No. 8-ranked Goshen Eagles (2-0) host the No. 4-ranked Highland Home Flying Squadron (2-0) in a Region 3 battle.
Goshen is coming off back-to-back dominant wins to open the season, defeating Daleville 49-22 in the opener and besting Zion Chapel 35-7 last week.
“I think we performed well, we had some good moments and some down moments,” Goshen Coach Don Moore said of the Zion Chapel win. “We didn’t perform as well as I would like and hope for but we were good enough to get the job done and get a win.”
Goshen senior running back Jamauri McClure has been on a tear to open the season, amassing 417 yards and five touchdowns on just 19 carries this season. He’s averaging a staggering 21.9 yards per carry. That offensive production will be tested against one of the best defenses in the state.
“Highland Home is a really good football team,” Moore said. “There’s a reason they’ve been to the semifinals so many times over the past few years. They’re big and physical and love to establish the run. It will be important for us to try and stop their run game.
“They’re also really good on defense. They have some really good players on that side, not just the two Power 5 guys, they have other guys that are really good, as well. It will be a challenge for sure.”
The “Power 5” players that Moore referenced are junior defensive end CJ May and outside linebacker Jakaleb Faulk. May is a 6-foot-4-inch, 225-pounder with offers from schools all over the country, while the 6-foot-3-inch, 220-pound Faulk is committed to play at Auburn. Faulk’s brother, Keldric Faulk, currently plays at Auburn, as well.
Highland Home already holds wins over both Providence Christian and Ariton this season, outscoring their opponents 74-7 in those two contests.
Highland Home holds a slight 30-29 edge over Goshen in the series history but has also won the past three games, including a 42-14 win last season. Goshen last defeated Highland Home in 2015, a 39-0 win.
Moore looks at the Highland Home matchup as a measuring stick for his Eagles this season.
“I want us to go out and compete. That’s what we play these games for,” Moore emphasized. “That’s why we do what we do, to go play against really good teams. This happens to be in our region and this is the first step to making the playoffs, too.
“That is a very good football team and how we compete against them will go a long way in saying where we go from here.”
Goshen and Highland Home will play at 7 p.m. in Goshen on Friday. The game will air live on C-Spire Channel 2 and will also stream live on CS2’s YouTube and Facebook pages.