Links to Week 7 football stories involving Franklin County Schools

Benton 53 Massac County 13

Link to the story from Rick Hayes – Benton  News

Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlawn 62 Hamilton County 34

Link to the story from Richard Blakley – Benton News

Johnston City 54 Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton 0

Link to the story from Jimmy Dean – Benton News

Herrin 52  West Frankfort 6

Link to the story from Dave Broy –


C-Z-R loses to Eldorado last night 54-6

CHRISTOPHER, IL-  (Michael “Spyder Man”  Dann.  Harrisburg Register.  Please click on the link above for the full story.  Here is an excerpt below)

If there has been one common theme for the Eldorado football team — at least in EHS head coach Joe Clarks’ eyes — it’s been the Eagles’ decision to play to their opponent.

All season long, we have played some decent teams, but at times we have played to our competition and tonight was one of those times when came out and played to our capabilities and essentially just took advantage of a developing program,” Clark said. “I’ve been on the other end of this and its no fun and being on this end isn’t really all that fun, but the reality is you would rather be on this end, get the clock going, get your guys out and focus on the next step.”

C-Z-R coach Anthony Hargrove had this to say about the program in general last night, “Of course the scoreboard doesn’t reflect the way we want it to, but we’re not looking at that right now. We’re focusing on the little things like our effort, running plays and knowing situations. I think we took a good step in that direction tonight, as far as, learning the nuances of the game.”

Link to WSIL-TV Sports Extra (8:15-8:55)


Week Six High School Scoreboard

Black Diamond

(6-0)  *Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlawn 20  Chester 6 (3-3)

(5-1)   *Eldorado 54  Christopher-Zeigler Royalton 6 (0-6)

 (6-0)  *Fairfield 50  Edwards County 0 (2-4)

(3-3)  Carmi-White County 44  Johnston City 14 (1-5)

Hamilton County (0-5) at Vienna-Goreville (3-2)

Southern Illinois River to River Ohio

(4-2)(2-1)  West Frankfort 44  Murphysboro 38 OT (1-5)(1-2)

(4-2)(2-1)  Benton 35  Harrisburg 28 (3-3)(1-2)

(5-1)(3-0)    Herrin 49  Massac County 0

Southern Illinois River to River Mississippi

(6-0)(3-0)  *Anna Jonesboro 35  Pinckneyville 0 (0-6)(0-3)

(4-2)(2-1)  Carterville 54  Nashville 21 (3-3)(1-2)

(5-1)(2-1)  DuQuoin  55  Sparta 20 (1-5)(1-2)

South Seven

(5-1)(2-1)  Belleville Altoff 32  Marion 28  (3-3)(2-1)

(5-1)(3-0)  Centralia 41  Cahokia 30 (2-4)(1-2)

(2-4)(1-2)  Carbondale 41  Mt. Vernon 8 (0-6)(0-3)

*Clinched playoff spot

Week 6 Preview: Eldorado (4-1) vs Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton (0-5)

by Steve Dunford

CZR signal caller Bryce Pratt earlier in the year against Carmi-White County. (Thank you Randall Risley)

The Eldorado Eagles will be facing the C-Z-R Bearcats this evening at Spann Field.  The Eagles are in contention tonight to clinch another playoff berth, which they have several consecutive playoff appearances.

I spoke with long time Eldorado assistant and first year head coach Joe Clark yesterday.  He told me coming into tonight’s game the Eagles are a little banged up but do not have anyone out over nagging injuries.

We began to talk about the Bearcat program, he gave me some interesting insights.  He began to talk about the tough times the program went through in Saline County in Brandon Hampton’s first few years.  He said one year things would click.

He also compared it to the SVWW program as well, and coach John Shadowen’s second tour of duty.  He said it takes baby steps.  He said in year two they made the playoffs, and now they are sitting tied for the conference lead at 5-0.

He sees Anthony Hargorve making similar strides with the Bearcats.

Clark then talked about Bearcat QB Bryce Pratt.  “He said, I don’t know if he would be our QB but he would definitely be somewhere in the backfield for us.  One day the yards he has been passing for will add up into some TD’s.  That night might be tonight, and we have to be ready for it.

He went on to talk about the BDC race and how week eight and nine will be something to watch and see, as Fairfield will have them and SVWW back to back.

If C-Z-R would win tonight, it would probably be the upset of the decade. or maybe in the history of the program.   There have been some ugly comments on social media about the program in general.  I was in a conversation with someone over the summer.  I said a 2-7 record would be very optimistic.  This is going to take time.

I am going to make a bold prediction.  In 2019 the Bearcats will be playing in Week 10 in the 2A playoffs.  Fill the stands up at Spann Field with orange and blue tonight, and enjoy the homecoming festivities.



Week 6 High School Football Schedule

Black Diamond

Eldorado (4-1) at Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton (0-5)

Chester (3-2) at Sesser-Valier-Waltonville Woodlawn (5-0)*

Edwards County (2-3) at Fairfield (5-0)*

Johnsotn City (1-4) at Carmi-White County (2-3)

Hamilton County (0-5) at Vienna-Goreville (3-2)  Saturday 1:00 p.m.

Southern Illinois River to River Ohio

Harrisburg (3-2)(1-1) at Benton (3-2)(1-1)

West Frankfort (3-2)(1-1)  at Murphysboro (1-4)(1-1)

Herrin (4-1)(2-0)  at Massac County (0-5)(0-2)

Southern Illinois River to River Mississippi

Anna-Jonesboro (5-0)(2-0) at Pinckneyville (0-5)(0-2)

Nashville (2-3)(1-1) at Carterville (3-2)(1-1)

DuQuoin (4-1)(1-1) at Sparta (1-4)(1-1)

South Seven

Belleville Altoff (4-1)(1-1) at Marion (3-2)(2-0)

Cahokia (2-3)(1-1) at Centralia (4-1)(2-0)

Carbondale (1-4)(0-2) at Mt. Vernon (0-5)(0-2)

One-sided rivalry: S-V-W-W Red Devils pound CZR Bearcats

SESSER, IL – (Richard Blakely – Benton News.  Please click on the link for the full story.  Here is an excerpt below.)

There have been some heavyweight battles between Franklin County rivals, Christopher and Sesser-Valier, in years past. Friday’s game wasn’t one of them.

Payton Rock finished the game with 152 yards rushing on five carries and scored twice. As a team, the Red Devils amassed 336 yards on 37 carries. Smith and Basso also combined for 138 yards passing with three touchdowns, all going to Kiselewski.

The Bearcats totaled negative rushing yards. However, quarterback Bryce Pratt was 14-31 passing for 198 yards and one interception.

Week Five HS football scoreboard

Black Diamond

Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlawn 66 (5-0)  Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton 0 (0-5) the Red Devils clinch a playoff berth with the win

Eldorado 30 (4-1) Hamilton County 0 (0-5)

Fairfield 18 (5-0)  Carmi-White County 0 (2-3) The Mules clinch a playoff spot with the win

Chester 47 (3-2)  Johnston City 29 (1-4)

Edwards County at Vienna-Goreville 1:00 p.m. Sat.

Southern Illinois River to River – Ohio

Harrisburg 34 (3-2)(1-1)  Massac County 14 (0-4)(0-2)

Herrin 42 (4-1)(2-0)  Murphysboro 6 (1-4)(1-1)

Benton (2-2)(0-1) at West Frankfort (3-1)(1-0) 12:00 p.m. Saturday

Southern Illinois River to River -Mississippi

Anna Jonesboro 41 (5-0)(2-0)  Carterville 7 (3-2)(1-1)

DuQuoin 57 (4-1)(1-1)  Pinckneyville 7 (0-2)(0-5)

Nashville 35 (1-1)(2-3) Sparta 14 (1-4)(1-1)

South Seven

Centralia 21 (4-1)(2-0) Belleville Altoff 14 (4-1)(1-1) Upset

Cahokia 56 (2-3)(1-1)  Carbondale 22 (1-4) (0-2)

Marion 56 (2-0)(3-2)  Mt. Vernon 12 (0-5)(0-2)





Week Five Football Schedule

Black Diamond

Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton (0-4) at Sesser-Valier-Waltonville (4-0)

Carmi- White County (2-2) at Fairfield (4-0)

Chester (2-2) at Johnston City (1-3)

Eldorado (3-1) at Hamilton County (0-4)

Edwards County (2-2) at Vienna-Goreville (2-2) 1:00 PM Saturday

Southern Illinois River to River – Ohio

Harrisburg (2-2) at Massac County (0-4) (0-1)

Murphysboro (1-3)(1-0) at Herrin (3-1)(1-0)

Benton (2-2)(0-1) at West Frankfort (3-1)(1-0)  12:00 p.m Saturday

Southern Illinois River to River – Mississippi

Carterville (3-1)(1-0) at Anna Jonesboro (4-0)(1-0)

Pinckneyville (0-4)(0-1) at DuQuoin (3-1)(0-1)

Nashville (1-3)(0-1) at Sparta (1-3)(1-0)

South Seven

Centralia (3-1)(1-0) at Belleville Altoff (4-0)(1-0)

Cahokia (1-3)(0-1) at Carbondale (1-3)(0-1)

Marion (1-0)(2-2) at Mt. Vernon (0-4)(0-1)

The Battle of 148: C-Z-R (0-4) travels to S-V-W-W (4-0)

by Steve Dunford

The C-Z-R Bearcats and the Edwards County Lions lining up for the coin flip before last Friday’s game at Albion. (Thank you very much to Randall Risley for letting me use the pictures.)

This game has been called the Hyphen Bowl, the Alphabet Soup Bowl or all kids of other things in the past.  However, Johnston City-Crab Orchard-Thompsonville takes the cake for the longest co-op name in BDC history.  That co-op abruptly ended when the Indians were pushed up two classes from 2A to 4A, and came close to upsetting the Mt. Carmel Golden Aces in the playoffs.

It might have been from a column, talk show, or even a social media post but several years ago before they played someone called it the Christopher-Zeigler-Royalton-Mulkeytown-Buckner-Coello-Cleburne Bearcats vs the Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlawn-Nason-Scheller-Boyd-Cravat Red Devils.

The Bearcats went on the road last week and fell to the Edwards County Lions 42-6.  The Devils went down to Johnston City and came out of Willamson County.

Tonight the Bearcats and the Red Devils will be playing for the traveling road sign of State Route 148 that goes to the winner each year.  A win by the Devils means a playoff birth will be clenched.  With the Black Diamond being a closed conference, a 5-4 record with a guaranteed 45 playoff points is a near lock to play on week 10 each season.

I spoke with Bearcat Coach Anthony Hargrove on the phone yesterday morning.  When he was talking about the Bearcats this year, he said, “Our Goal is to Excel on Monday, (The Bearcat JV squad is 2-2 and their two losses has been by two points each) our goal this year is increasing or Football IQ.  We are in great game shape. If you look at our game film, the other team is huffing and puffing on the sidelines.”

Coach Hargrove said we just need to come out and play with confidence on Friday night like on a Monday and play with a good flow of the game. I mentioned that sophomore QB Bryce Pratt has been throwing in triple digits every game in the box score.  He said he threw for over 200 yds. in the loss to Edwards County.  He said the JV team which is basically the same at the skill positions that play on Friday night, have a high powered offense.

I watched a lot of Bearcat football last year.  The only game they did not have a game running clock was in Week 9 against Vienna-Goreville.  They have not had a game this year that has not been.  Coach Hargrove knows where this team is.  He has a good staff in Josh McCurren, Scotty Clark, and I even saw in a picture, the veteran of 50+ years of coaching Buddy Velasco is on the sidelines again.

Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlawn Coach John Shadowens had this to say about coach Hargrove, “We respect Coach Hargrove and his program. His is loyal, enthusiastic, and sticks up for his guys. I like that.”

Devil fans are treated this year to a very special group.  I can see them running the table up to week nine.  With FB Peyton Rock, and with the Gunter brothers Lucas, and Eli, at running back, and their cousin Joshua as a receiver, and a QB in Clayton Smith who took snaps as a freshman, this is an explosive offense big time.  I see them running the table in the BDC until a week nine showdown with Fairfield at the Train Yard.

There is a 99% chance that S-V-W-W will come out with the victory tonight.  If the Bearcats come out with a good showing tonight, it will be a big confidence booster for this team.  I have them circled to pick up the win when they play Hamilton County.

You hear the term culture change a lot in sports.  The kids are usually playing hard, they just need to pick up a win.

I have been living in West Frankfort  for two years now.  Sometimes a win is good for the program’s future.  Last year when they picked up a win against perennial powerhouse Harrisburg, it changed the culture of the whole program.  Yes a lot of kids graduated, but a young football team at the skill positions is 3-1 and went on the road and picked up a nice road win at Harrisburg last Friday night.  The Redbrids were winless in 2015, and 1-8 in 2014.

Your goals are different when a program is rebuilding.  In Coach Shadowens’ second tour of duty with the Devils, is has been slow progression, 4-5 then 5-4 last year.  Yes it was ugly at the pit in Mt. Carmel in the playoff’s last year, but the most important part, they were playing on week 10.

That loss at Mt. Carmel helped them this year.  Around 9:00 pm tonight, the Devils will be 5-0.  In the worse case scenario, I see them ending up 7-2, and going deep in the class 3A playoffs.

The Bearcats day will come, possibly next year or even two years down the road.  They will most likely be 2A and will make some noise i



Edwards County rolls past Bearcats, 42-6

ALBION, IL (Randall Risley, Benton News.  Please click on the link for the full story.  Here is an excerpt below.)

Edwards County wasted little time in putting away the Christopher/Zeigler-Royalton Bearcats Friday night.

The Lions scored less than three minutes into the game on a 10-yard run by senior Lincoln Moore at the 9:24 mark of the first period. The point-after-kick by Silas Hortin was good for a 7-0 lead.

The Bearcats finally got on the board with 2:56 left in the game on a 10-yard toss from quarterback Bryce Pratt to wide receiver Greg Fletcher.

“We’ve just got to come ready to play,” said Bearcats head coach Anthony Hargrove. “The days of coming out here and waiting have got to end. We’ve got to come out from the first whistle and play hard.”

Benton, West Frankfort, Illinois News | Franklin County News