Warriors visit Bulldogs in city clash

Published 9:33 pm Thursday, October 3, 2019

The Warriors and Bulldogs clash in the second city rivalry game of the season, while the Saints look to continue working during their bye week.

Nansemond River High School (3-1) at King’s Fork High School (2-2)

The Bulldogs will host the Warriors Friday night for what will be an action-packed cross-town rivalry.

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The Bulldogs have already competed in a rivalry game this season with a win over Lakeland High School. At 1-0 against Suffolk schools already, the Bulldogs could be the 2019-2020 city champions, a crown they last owned during the 2017-2018 season.

King’s Fork is coming off of a close loss against Western Branch last week, where they were shut out in the first half. Not much needed to be said this week for the Bulldogs to know how important this game was.

“We are feeling pretty good about ourselves coming into this game,” Bulldogs defensive back Garrett Williams said. “No one had to tell us to get our minds ready for this one. We know how important this game is.”

Nansemond River bounced back nicely last week with a win over Great Bridge High School after a disappointing loss to Deep Creek High School the week before. Since Coach Justin Conyers has taken over as head coach, a consistent message he has relayed is not losing within the city of Suffolk. So far so good for the Warriors, as they are the reigning city champions from the 2018-2019 season.

“We are fired up and ready to go,” Warriors defensive standout Keonte’ Cobb said. “Execution is key, so we look forward to going out there and flying around and doing our assignments. Our goal is to continue to be Suffolk city champions.”

A key to victory for the Bulldogs will be to contain the rushing attack of the Warriors. X’zavion Evans has more than 500 rushing yards for the season, and Brent Stratton has also added some fire power from the backfield. Nansemond River will need to be stout in its defensive effort because Leo Wethington remains a strong running back for the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs also have Natouris Knight and Kahari Rodgers, who can make plays in the receiving game.

Both quarterbacks for each team are first-year starters and will look to do their best to command their teams from the pocket. Coach Kermit Buggs has liked the way Leonta Johnson has progressed, and Conyers has also liked what he has seen from his quarterback, Nolan James.

Friday will be an exciting matchup as the Bulldogs host Nansemond River at 7 p.m.

Lakeland High School (0-4) at Deep Creek High School (4-0)

The Cavs will have a tough matchup this Friday when they go on the road to take on an undefeated Deep Creek team. Lakeland is still in search of its first win after a loss to Grassfield High School last weekend. The young Cavs are currently playing with 11 first time starters on offense, so it has been taking the offense a while to get into a groove.

Coach Joe Jones knows it’s going to take some time for the wins to start rolling in; however, he constantly wants his team to believe in themselves.

“We have to put our head down and keep going to work and doing our jobs,” Jones said. “I believe in these guys, and we feel like we are headed in the right direction.”

Lakeland will be at Deep Creek at 7 p.m. Friday.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy (2-4)

The Saints are on a bye this week, but before going on their bye, they put together two straight wins after starting off the season 0-4. In both wins, the Saints put up more than 30 points. The Saints are starting to play their best football as they head into the latter part of their schedule.

Coach Mike Biehl has been impressed with how the team has been playing as of late.

“Anytime you can get out of a slump and get some momentum your way, it is always great,” Biehl said. “It’s really a tale of two seasons, and we’ve taken this time to look at what we can do better and to evaluate ourselves for this second half of the season. It’s all about controlling what we can control.”

The Saints return to the field next week for homecoming.