Bulldogs, Saints kick season off at home

Published 10:37 pm Thursday, August 23, 2018

Football is officially back in Suffolk, and the Saints and Bulldogs open things up at home this week.

King’s Fork High School vs. Wilson High School

The Bulldogs are coming off of their most exciting season in school history. They open up the season as the reigning Southeastern District champions and return the reigning Coach of the Year in Scottie Littles. After accomplishing so much last year, the Bulldogs return hungrier than ever.

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Not too long after their regional playoff loss last year, the Bulldogs immediately got back to work. They were driven by last season’s shortcomings, and Littles is confident his team will pick up where they left off last season.

They open the season at home against Wilson. Last season, they were on the road at Wilson and dominated 41-0. This week has been good regarding preparation for the first game. Littles along with his players are excited to get the 2018 season under way.

“We are excited, and we have had a great week of practice,” Littles said. “Everything these guys have gone through in the offseason, camp, scrimmages and practices are all for this moment right here. It’s a big deal, and our kids are pumped up about it, and we are just excited to play some football.”

Wilson will be under a new direction with a new coach. Even though the Bulldogs are at home, they expect a lot of energy out of Wilson playing for their new coach.

“We are going to have to match that emotion of it being their first game with their new coach,” Littles said. “They have some size and speed, and we have to make sure we do what we do, and we’ll be fine.”

The Bulldogs return a host of playmakers on both sides of the ball after losing a strong senior class. Seniors Jay’ree Hardy, Devin Chambliss and Bobby Boone will help with playmaking and leadership. Other standouts such as Treyshaun Mitchell, Leo Wethington and Elijah Askew will also continue to be difference makers for King’s Fork. The Bulldogs have a new player under center in transfer Marc Dyer. Littles is excited about his potential and what we will do for the Bulldogs offense.

“We want to make sure we run the football and stop the football,” Littles said. “We have to be disciplined, so we don’t want any personal fouls.”

King’s Fork will host Wilson at 7 p.m.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy vs. North Cross School

The Saints are making their return back to the field after finishing 6-4 in 2017. Coach Mike Biehl is back for his third season and is expecting the Saints to try to take the next step this season. They were right outside of the playoffs after finishing their season with a six-game win streak.

They open the season against a good North Cross team. Last year, the Saints fell 41-24 and will be looking to reverse that this year. This time of the year is exciting, and the Saints are ready to go.

“I feel like we have a good game plan and we have gotten some really good practice time in this week,” Biehl said. “Now it’s just time to go out there and execute it.”

Biehl and the Saints have been practicing for the size North Cross normally has. However, NSA feels comfortable in the skill guys that they have, whom they believe will jump on the scene this year.

“It’s going to come down to who can keep up with the opposing offense,” Biehl said. “Whoever can keep up and get a few stops and force some errors on the other side, that’s what’s going to win the game.”

NSA returns playmakers n George Pettaway, Ehron Knight, Zac Morris and Ben Koppelman. Josh Hoerster also returns. Jaden Freeman will be transitioning from the basketball court and hopes to make an impact as well. Ian McAninley will be under center this year for the Saints.

“We have some guys that can make plays,” Biehl said. “We got guys who can make plays and withstand the punch when North Cross makes a run.”

NSA will host North Cross at 7 p.m.