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Patriots play host to Knights

While it may not have taken much for the Pike Liberal Arts Patriots to put away its first opponent of the new season, the same cannot be said for its second.

In the Patriots’ home opener, the team will play host to Macon-East Montgomery Academy spicing up early season play with a rivalry matchup that is usually reserved for the closing weeks of the season.

“The guys have had a good week of practice,” head coach Steven Kilcrease said Thursday afternoon.

“They know that they are going to be going up against a tough rival.

“The past couple of years, the winner of this game decided who would have home field advantage. So we all know the kind of impact this game has,” the coach added.

In the last six meetings, each team has won three games apiece.

PLAS has taken the last two times, outscoring Knights 82-28.

However, from 2005 through 2007, Macon-East dominated the series, winning all three games and including shutting the Patriots out in back-to-back seasons.

“Our guys know they have to be focused,” Kilcrease said.

“I think we got off to a good start last week (against Lyman Ward) and hopefully we will be able to keep it going this week.”

The Patriots were able to impose its will on the Fight Rangers from the very beginning the very end, as PLAS won 55-0.

Both sides of the offensive were clicking as Taylor Stevens, Ben McKeller, Evan Strother, Nick McLaughlin and Kyle Boswell all scored rushing touchdowns, while Blake Floyd finished with three passing scores.

The Knights did not have as easy of a time moving the ball in their opener against Monroe County.

Macon-East could not find any kind of consistency on offense against the Volunteers, while on defense it allowed big scoring drives both on the ground and threw the air.

Regardless, Kilcrease said his team is going to have to be ready for multiple looks from the Macon-East offense.

“We are going to have to stop them up front,” he said.

“Assignment football is going to play a big role for us on defense. They have some play makers and we are going to have to be ready.”

As he did last week, Floyd will get the start for PLAS at the quarterback position.

“I thought Blake played well for us,” Kilcrease said.

“I thought he made some good passes and managed the ball well. But I think Josh Starling also played well.

“Both guys will be seeing action (tonight) and I am excited about what both are able to do for us. They both can do a lot for us in other positions, which is a tremendous help,” the coach said. “It’s a good kind of problem to have.”