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September 1, 2011
Each week, we'll take a look at the top performances from the weekend in AA football, headlined by VirginiaPreps.com's AA Player of the Week. Nominations are open on each region's message board, starting Saturday mornings, so if we miss somebody, make sure you put deserving players in the mix on the message boards.
Week One Player of the Week
There were plenty of reasons for this week's player of the week to not turn in an outstanding performance on Friday night. His first game as a starting quarterback. A new coach and new offensive system. Playing on the road against a long-time rival. Even so, Harrisonburg's Jake Durden had a fantastic game in the Blue Streaks' 36-35 win over Turner Ashby this weekend. Durden completed 17 of 34 passes for 295 yards and three touchdowns and no interceptions and also ran for 63 yards and a touchdown. With the loss of much of their offense from last season's state finals trip and new coach Chris Thurman installing the spread offense, Harrisonburg faces a lot of questions this season, but they came out firing in week one with Jake Durden earning our player of the week nod.
Other Notable Performances
Alleghany's Seth Bradley threw six touchdowns against rival Covington. With his top four receivers gone from 2010, Bradley had no trouble picking out a new cast of receivers on Friday.
A'Darius Brown had a great night on Monday as James Monroe beat Tabb 59-20. Brown returned the opening kickoff 88 yards for a touchdown and added touchdown runs of 57 and 41 yards, as well.
Northside's Adam Hardister led the Vikings past Amherst County in last week's game of the week, throwing for 200 yards on 14 of 21 passing, along with two touchdowns.
In a 28-14 win over William Byrd, Sam Wright produced all of Cave Spring's touchdowns, scoring four times and running for 145 yards.
Rustburg's Randall Jones battled cramps during the Red Devils' win over William Campbell, but managed to score four touchdowns and run for 126 yards.
Three TD nights: Hilson Atkins, Brookville; William Emeny, Poquoson; Austin Nicely, Spotswood; Jevontae Parrish, Heritage (Lynchburg); Harvey Taylor, Magna Vista
There were also some tremendous defensive efforts to open the season. Nick Helmick, defensive end for Skyline, had a sack, forced fumble, fumble recovery, as well as a touchdown catch on offense before missing the second half with a concussion.
Jefferson Forest's Chad Pinigis led the Cavaliers past Halifax County with five tackles, a sack, two fumble recoveries (one for a touchdown).
Brent Thacker, a sophomore from Rustburg had three fumble recoveries in the win over William Campbell.
Fluvanna's Yaya Anderson returned an interception for a touchdown and ran a punt back for a score in the Flucos 33-22 win over Prince Edward.
Connor Bronson from Lord Botetourt and Damien Patterson from Martinsville both had long touchdown receptions (83 yards for Bronson, 70 for Patterson) to go along with a punt return for touchdown (Bronson) and interception return for a touchdown (Patterson).
E.C. Glass' Daniel Bowling caught five passes for 155 yards and two scores in the Hilltoppers' 35-0 win over Charlottesville.
Finally, Kent Henry from Western Albemarle and Trent Hart from Turner Ashby ran for over 100 yards and passed for over 100 yards. Henry finished with 132 passing and 123 rushing, while Hart had 155 passing and 104 rushing in the loss to Harrisonburg.