(Observer Sweet 16 rankings listed with team)
No. 10 Richmond Senior (2-1) at No. 5 Butler (1-1), Fri, 7: The Raiders rebounded from a 49-28 loss to two-time N.C. 4AA champ Wake Forest by shutting out Pine Forest last week. Butler was off after losing to Sweet 16 No. 2 Mallard Creek Aug. 24. Both teams are state title contenders meeting in one of the best games in North Carolina this week.
Independence (2-0) at West Mecklenburg (2-1), Fri, 7: West Meck has won two straight games and is beginning to get healthy after seven key players missed a season-opening 21-14 loss to Vance. Independence is 2-0 after the Patriots watched Olympic score to take a 34-32 lead with 55 seconds left last week. But the Patriots answered with a Luke McPhail to Brian Morgan touchdown pass with 19.6 seconds left to win.
No. 8 Indian Trail Sun Valley (2-0) at No. 16 Indian Trail Porter Ridge (2-1), Fri, 7:30: Sun Valley, led by Florida State-recruited QB Sam Howell, is averaging more than 40 points per game. Porter Ridge lost to rival Weddington Friday, playing without QB Grayson McCall for most of the second quarter and playing without running back Jaylen Coleman for nearly three quarters.
Shelby (1-2) at Boiling Springs Crest (2-0), Fri, 7:30: Crest, which has allowed but 17 points all season, plays host to its arch rival. Shelby, which has won four state titles in the past five seasons, hopes to avoid a three-game losing streak.
Central Cabarrus (3-0) at East Rowan (3-0), Fri, 7:30: East Rowan averages nearly 42 points per game and allows seven. Central Cabarrus averages 35 points and allows five. East Rowan is 3-0 for the fourth time in 60 seasons.
No. 13 Marvin Ridge (3-0) at Winston-Salem Parkland (3-0), Fri, 7:30: Parkland averages more than 46 points per game. Marvin Ridge, allowing just nine points per game, is off to its second straight 3-0 start.