The St. Pius X Catholic High School football team opens the 2019 season with four consecutive away games. The first matchup is a scrimmage against the Lovett Lions that will not count toward the team’s overall record. After the exhibition game, the team will play three consecutive road games to open the regular season, followed by four straight home games. 

Here’s a preview of the first four matches:

Scrimmage, August 9, 7:30 p.m. vs. the Lovett Lions

The Lions went 6-6 last year, finished as the No. 13 ranked team in Class AAA and advanced to the second round of the state playoffs. Lovett graduated most of its talent at the offensive skill positions but returns Princeton commit Blaine McAllister at quarterback. The two teams squared off in a scrimmage last year, which the Golden Lions won. Both Lovett and St. Pius will use the scrimmage to prepare young teams for the upcoming season.

Game 1, August 23, 7:30 p.m. vs. the Blessed Trinity Titans

After a week off, the Golden Lions will face the back-to-back defending AAAA state champions in the annual Crosstown Showdown. In each of the past six years, the Titans have won at least nine games, a region title and advanced past the second round of the playoffs. They have won 51 of their past 57 games, including five straight matchups against St. Pius. They are currently on a 21-game winning streak. The Titans will look very different than a year ago, after graduating a plethora of talented players including quarterback Jake Smith, J.D Bertrand, and running back Steele Chambers. Running back and UNC commit Elijah Green is the Titans’ top returning player, with over 1,800 career rushing yards. The Titans trounced St. Pius 35-13 in the most recent edition of the Catholic school rivalry.

Game 2, August 30, 7:30 p.m. vs. the Dunwoody Wildcats

The Wildcats enter 2019 hoping to improve on a 2-8 season a year ago. The Golden Lions defeated Dunwoody 45-17 last year at home and held the Wildcats to 118 total yards of offense. Dunwoody was held to 2-15 through the air for a total of 44 yards. The Golden Lions had one of their best offensive outings of the season, with 387 yards of total offense. The Wildcats only return a handful of key starters, including quarterback duo Jaxon Warshaw and Davis LeDoyen.

Game 3, September 6, 7:30 p.m. vs. the Westminster Schools

Westminster went 8-5 and advanced to the Class AAA quarterfinals last season. The team returns quarterback Parks Harber, who broke out as one of the top passers in AAA a season ago. The Wildcats’ senior running back tandem of Paul Weathington and Will Hallmark will also return. The Golden Lions defeated Westminster 35-9 last year, behind 388 yards of total offense. St. Pius has won the past four matchups between the two teams but has only won seven out of 30 games all-time against the Wildcats.

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