Caiden Hawkins and Pisgah travel to Ider Thursday for a Class 2A Region 7 matchup.

It has been a frustrating season thus far for the Pisgah football team.

The youthful Eagles have battled growing pains and self-inflicted mistakes against a challenging schedule, opening the season with a 1-5 record.

But as tough has things have been, Pisgah arrives at Week 7 with its playoff hopes still intact. In fact, the Eagles are in control of their playoff fate with three region games remaining.

“It’s not been like we wanted it to, but here we are, still with a chance to get in (the playoffs),” said Pisgah head coach Luke Pruitt.

Pisgah (1-5, 1-2) tries to take a step closer to the postseason when they make the short drive to Ider for a Class 2A Region 7 matchup Thursday night at Wayne C. Hardman Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. The game was originally scheduled for Friday but was moved to Thursday because of the threat of inclement weather on Friday.

It’s the 45th all-time meeting between the schools in a series Pisgah leads 27-16-1. Although Ider is Pisgah’s third most played opponent behind North Sand Mountain (50 meetings) and Sylvania (40 meetings), Friday’s game is the Eagles’ first against Ider since 2009. 

“That’s a game that should be played every year,” Pruitt said. “(Ider) Coach (Miles) Keith and I had talked about it (scheduling a non-region game) before we got put in the same region. It’s good to have that game back.”

Ider (1-5, 0-3) opened the season with a 23-8 win over Woodville before suffering losses to Plainview 40-0, NSM 40-13, Valley Head 34-32 and Victory Christian 14-12 that were sandwiched around COVID-19 related forfeits to region foes Tanner and Section.

The Hornets’ top playmakers are quarterback Matthew Norman, wide receiver/running back Hunter Robinson, running back Luke Hannah, wide receiver Dallen Hartline and tight end Jesse Massey. Robinson ran for 187 yards on 30 carries and a touchdown while Norman had 101 yards and a score on 18 carries in last week’s loss to Victory Christian. 

“They’ve kind of been a formation of the week based on what we’ve seen,” Pruitt said. “The Norman kid is a good player. No. 2, Robinson, has got good speed. Ider’s just like us, they’ve still got a chance. They’re still in it. They play hard. I’ve never seen an Ider team on film that didn’t play hard and that wasn’t physical.” 

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