(Observer Sweet 16 rankings listed with team)
Hough (5-2, 3-0 I-Meck 4A) at No. 16 North Mecklenburg (7-0, 3-0), 7 p.m.: Huskies quarterback Kennique Bonner-Steward has thrown for more than 1,100 yards. The Vikings’ combination of QB Aaron Scott to WR Emanual Wilson has accounted for 11 touchdowns. The winner will keep pace with Mallard Creek in the title race.
No. 7 Hickory Ridge (7-0, 3-0 Southwestern 4A) at No. 9 Myers Park (6-1, 2-1), 7 p.m.: The Ragin’ Bulls have jumped from 3A to 4A with seven straight victories but face their toughest test so far. They are led by QB Dylan Ratliff, who has thrown for 1,422 yards and 15 touchdowns and run for 553 yards and three scores. The Mustangs and their extremely talented offense will try to recover from last week’s loss to Butler.
Metrolina Christian (6-1) at No. 4 Charlotte Christian (5-1), 7 p.m.: Sun Valley transfer Ishod Finger has rushed for 1,539 yards and 22 touchdowns for the visitors from Indian Trail. The Knights counter with their offense, led by QB Garrett Shrader.
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Arden Christ School (6-0) at Charlotte Latin (5-2), 7:30 p.m.: Junior RB Sidney Gibbs is averaging 244 rushing yards a game for the visiting Greenies. He’ll meet his match in Latin RB DeMarkes Stradford, a Harvard commit who has rushed for more than 100 yards in each game this season.
South Iredell (5-2, 1-0 North Piedmont 3A) at West Rowan (4-3, 1-0), 7:30 p.m.: Vikings QB Brady Pope threw for five touchdowns in last week’s rout of Statesville. West Rowan has won three straight and is averaging 50 points in the past two contests. A victory gives South Iredell a sweep of its two toughest league foes.
Salisbury (5-1, 4-0 Central Carolina 2A) at Ledford (6-1, 5-0), 7:30 p.m.: Salisbury is off to its best start in several years, averaging 35 points a game. Ledford’s defense averages three sacks and 1.5 interceptions a game.
Fort Mill (4-3, 1-1 S.C. Region 4 5A) at Rock Hill (2-6, 1-0), 7:30 p.m.: The winner keeps pace with Northwestern in the region title race. J.T. Marr is averaging 212 passing yards for Fort Mill. The host Bearcats have been inconsistent but are coming off a big win over Nation Ford.