Warriors eager to face rival Millbrook

Hunter Entsminger

STEPHENS CITY — Sherando doesn’t want history to repeat itself.

Last year the Warriors had a chance to make the playoffs with a win in the final game against Millbrook, but came up short. Tonight when Sherando plays at Frederick County rival Millbrook they once again can secure a playoff berth with a win.

“Last year we missed the playoffs — 5-5 — that’s not Sherando football, never has been,” Sherando junior quarterback Hunter Entsminger said. “So really getting this win — it would mean everything. Last year was bad. We had a down year. So really getting this win, securing playoffs would really mean everything to this team. And we’ve all thought about it. We all don’t want to miss the playoffs again.”

The Warriors (7-2) could make the Class 4, Region C playoffs even with a loss, but it could depend on what other teams do. Sherando is in fifth in the Virginia High School League Class 4, Region C power ratings and the top six teams advance to the playoffs.

Sherando coach Bill Hall said the points are so close that there are many scenarios. So he’s told his team to just focus on Millbrook.

Bill Hall

“We know if we win we’re going to be in the playoffs,” Hall said. “Where we fall in the playoffs who knows? We can’t control that. So we don’t need to worry about that. Right now we need to worry about Millbrook and the game and how do we need to execute in that game.”

The undefeated Pioneers pose a real challenge to Sherando. Millbrook is led by junior running back Savon Smith.

Quarterback Isaac Brown transferred last winter to Millbrook from Martinsburg High School in Martinsburg, West Virginia. Brown has already committed to play football at the University of Richmond next year.

Hall said that Brown’s ability to extend plays make him very dangerous and tough for defenses to defend.

“They have a lot of speed on the field,” Hall said. “Their offense makes you defend the field horizontally and vertically. So it requires that you do a good job with your fits. If you’re not good with your fits, speed will hurt you.”

Adding to the importance of the game is the Apple Cup, given to the Frederick County/Winchester team with the best head-to-head record among the four schools, and at least a share of the Class 4, Northwestern District title.

But perhaps just as important is bragging rights.

Entsminger said that he enjoys playing against one of Sherando’s biggest rivals.

“The last couple years they’ve been good,” Entsminger said. “Being 10 minutes away, you all know each other. You guys all hang out. So really we’re all good friends, but when it comes to this week we’re just like can’t talk to ’em. They’re good, they got athletes. They’re fast. They’re strong. We just got to go out there and show ’em what we’re made of.”

Last year the Pioneers beat the Warriors, 42-41. Entsminger said it was a tough loss, and one they want to make sure doesn’t happen again.

“We lost by one point last year,” Entsminger said. “We had a PAT blocked. It definitely kills you to think about it — watching film all that on it. But you just got to learn from the mistakes we had last year. And just really go out there and play the game that we’re capable of.”