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FLS Varsity brings you the scores, stats and stories from Fredericksburg-area high school sports.

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Schedule will renew regional rivalries

Mark your calendars. The full Virginia High School League 2014 football schedule has officially been released.

There are plenty of intriguing matchups involving area teams, who get back to practice in less than a month.

Like last year, this season will begin on Thursday, Aug. 28 for some area teams. That’s OK. It just means back-to-back nights of high school football for some die-hard fans.

Here are five games to watch this season, and don’t worry—we know there will be so many more.

Mountain View at James Monroe (Sept. 12): Before they became state championship-winning head coaches, James Monroe’s Rich Serbay and Mountain View’s Lou Sorrentino once spent a couple of years as roommates in Fredericksburg. The two friends have talent-rich teams and star quarterbacks in seniors Elijah Burress (MV) and Jay Scroggins (JM).

Colonial Forge at Hermitage (Sept. 12): The Eagles won in double overtime last season to hand the Panthers their first regular-season loss in 40 games. Colonial Forge tied the game in the first overtime on an extra point that was disputed by Hermitage. The Panthers took their case to the VHSL to no avail.

Massaponax at North Stafford (Oct. 24): Traditional powers are both faced with similar dilemmas of replacing a lot of talent from state playoff teams. They split a pair of games last season, with the Wolverines avenging a regular-season loss with a win in the Group 5A state quarterfinals.

Chancellor at Courtland (Oct. 31): This matchup has had so many playoff implications for both teams in years past. Chancellor is hoping for that this season after a rare postseason-less campaign in 2013. Courtland, winners of four straight in this series, could be a state title contender yet again.

Essex at Washington & Lee (Nov. 1): These Northern Neck District rivals have played a lot of big games in the past. The series takes on new significance now that Todd Jones, who led the Tro-jans to 10 district titles and the 2009 Division 2 state championship, is in his first year coaching the Eagles.

Nathan Warters: 540/374-5442