‘Dogs and Cavs to square off

Published 10:29 pm Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Blood will be pumping, and adrenaline will be rushing Thursday night as King’s Fork High School host crosstown rivals from Lakeland High School.

King’s Fork’s Bulldogs are 2-3 on the football field this season. Lakeland’s Cavaliers have set a blistering 4-1 pace.

Intra-city rivalry games can result in some exciting competitive football.

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Both teams want to be considered the best in the city, and both teams are going into the game expecting the best from each other.

“It’s a big game for us,” Cavs coach Kevin Knight said. “Our goal is to try to finish up 5-1. We look at this game as just the next game on schedule. We have to come out and play hard.”

Both teams have offenses that can explode on any night, so defense will have to prevail.

Lakeland High School senior Damontra Milteer carries the ball in a previous game.

Lakeland High School senior Damontra Milteer carries the ball in a previous game.

The Cavaliers will have to account for Bulldogs quarterback Justin German and running back Darran Butts. German has 883 yards and nine touchdowns through five games. Butts has 615 yards and eight touchdowns.

KFHS coach Scottie Littles has also liked the production from receiver Cherrod Joe, who has 375 receiving yards.

“We got to do a better job at getting everyone involved,” Littles said. “Every time Cherrod touches the ball it’s a big play, so we have to do a good job of getting him and everyone else involved.”

The Bulldogs are coming off a disappointing homecoming loss to Great Bridge last week.

“We have to be disciplined on all sides of the ball, be fast and execute,” German said. “We always talk about being all in. Well this game we are going to need everyone to be all in, no matter what it takes. We have to play like it’s do or die, while also doing our job.”

After starting the season 2-0, King’s Fork is on a three-game losing streak. The Bulldogs know they have yet to play their best football in every phase and are hoping Friday’s game against the Cavs is a way to bounce back.

“This game can definitely change our season,” German said. “We all believe that we will win and get back on track. We are staying positive around here, because we know in order to win you have to be positive and believe.”

German and Butts provide matchup problems for any defense.

However, the Cavaliers also have a quarterback/running back duo that must be accounted for: Tyquan Holloman and Damontra Milteer.

Milteer is the leading rusher in the Southeastern District, with 791 yards through five games, including two 200-plus yard games. He also has nine touchdowns so far.

Holloman, though only a sophomore, is allowing himself to make plays with his arms and legs and trusting what he is seeing, instead of forcing things. Cavs coach Kevin Knight said he has been impressed with the Holloman’s maturity.

Lakeland is playing its best football in recent years. The Cavaliers are No. 3 in Southeastern district. Last year the Bulldogs won this intra-city matchup 33-7, and the Cavs certainly believe they’re a better team this time around.

“It’s very important this time that we play great fundamentally sound football,” Cavs senior Garrett Whitley said. “It’s going to be an exciting game.”

During the first three games of the season, the LHS defense didn’t allow a passing touchdown and has limited teams like Oscar Smith and Western Branch. The Cavs are starting to believe and are building confidence through each game.

This game can go either way: It could be a defensive battle, or it could very well be a shootout.

The game was originally supposed to take place Friday night at 7 p.m. but due to weather concerns, it has been moved up a day to 7 p.m. tonight at King’s Fork High School.