UP FOR GRABS: The Pike County Bulldogs head to Daleville for showdown with Warhawks for region crown
Published 3:30 am Friday, October 23, 2015
The Pike County Bulldogs can clinch their first class 3A Region 2 championship since 2009 with a win tonight against rival Daleville.
The Bulldogs (5-0, 7-0) currently sit in a first place tie with the Warhawks, who enter tonight’s contest with a 5-0 record in the conference and an overall record of 6-1.
“It would be very exciting for us to win the region,” said head coach Fred Holland. “It will be exciting not only for us but for our fans and out community.”
The Bulldogs have practiced this week just like another week while at the same time expressing the importance of the game.
“Practicing has been good this week,” Holland said. “Our mindset has been on doing the things we need to do to become successful. We understand the importance of the game with where we are in the standings.”
In a game of this magnitude it’s always important to have leadership from the guys who have played in big games before. The Bulldogs have 13 seniors on the roster.
“We rely on them a lot,” Holland said. “It’s not that hard. They pretty much lead anyway when it comes to guiding the guys in the right direction. It is something that has been going on all along, so it’s not something that we really have to preach. They understand what we preach in practice.”
The Bulldogs have continued to improve each week in the season, and Holland hopes to see more progress tonight.
“It’s been great how the schedule worked out,” Holland said. “We had an opportunity at the beginning of the year to bring some guys along and be able to have them grow up in certain situations. It worked out good for us.”
The Bulldogs started at the beginning of the year with a preseason match up with Charles Henderson. Following their game with their chief rivals the Bulldogs first five opponents on season have a current record of 17-31. The overall record of their next three opponents in Wicksburg, Slocomb and now Daleville Friday night is 18-7.
Like Pike County the Warhawks are coming into this pivotal match up playing their best football of the season. In their last three games the Warhawks have defeated 5A Rehobeth, Abbeville and Dale County by a combined score of 105-27.
“I think we match up pretty good,” Holland said. “We both play a pretty physical style of football, and we both run the ball a lot. Their passing game will be a big difference in the game. It’s going to come down to who plays well and takes care of the ball.”
Daleville’s lone loss of the season came in a non-region match up with class 2A member Elba, who is the No.1 team in the state. Elba defeated the Warhawks 28-7.
The match up to look at will be Daleville’s offense going up against the staunch Bulldog defense.
The Warhawks have averaged 30 points per game while the Bulldogs have outscored their opponents 353-22.
The Warhawks defeated the Bulldogs in Brundidge a year ago 13-12, but the Bulldogs hold the all time advantage by winning 16 of the 26 games.
Kick off between the Bulldogs and Warhawks is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Warhawk Stadium in Daleville.