Happy Valley gears up for winless Doak

By Wes Holtsclaw

   Coming off of a big 7-6 win against Johnson County, the Happy Valley Warriors are exploding back onto the Watauga Conference scene with a big matchup against the Chuckey Doak Black Knights for their homecoming.
   "It's a very important game," said Warrior coach Stan Ogg. "We're back in the conference and they are all important. We have just one more after this, so we are taking them seriously. They worry us to death.
   "There have been a lot of things different about this team. At West Greene we moved the ball and did a lot of things, but missed on some defense.
   "Against Johnson County, we didn't handle the ball well, but we played solid and hard defense where they wouldn't give an inch. A lot of people as stepped up."
   The Warriors have been playing strong throughout the past two weeks, and junior defensive tackle Josh Smith believes they must be ready to handle Doak.
   "Just as long as we play hard and do what we're supposed to do, we can win," said Smith, who led the Warriors with 10 tackles and two sacks against Johnson County.
   Smith has been improving on a weekly basis for the Warriors (1-1, 3-2), and he hopes that motivation doesn't stop this week.
   "I've liked playing defense well this year," Smith said. "I've had a little trouble, but I'm getting better every week."
   Warrior quarterback Lamar Rollins is entering his final homecoming in the Happy Valley uniform, and is looking to bounce forward with a strong second half to the season.
   "All our seniors need to be proud and take this game for our last homecoming," said Rollins, who has scored four touchdowns this year. "We're just looking forward to running real hard, and we should do really good."
   Warrior tailback Tim Whaley explodes into this week as the second leading rusher in the Watauga Conference with 65 carries for 561 yards and three scores.
   Said Whaley: "It's our homecoming and we've got to be ready to play our best. We've got to run and block hard, and do everything right to come out with the victory."
   Chuckey Doak (0-1, 1-4) comes to the game after a loss to 1-A North Greene last week. Although many would consider this game a walkover for Happy Valley, Coach Stan Ogg is worried about the Knight offense.
   "They look different with a new staff and they've got a lot of options," said Ogg. "With this quick new system, they will be tough. They are not the same, and it worries me to death. They have just been learning it in four months, and in four years they will be scary.
   "On defense, their line gives us a college type front, they have eight people around the tackles and they take a lot of looks."
   The Knights take the field behind the running of A. J. Pricenor, who is sixth in the conference with 274 yards on the ground. Pricenor has also caught two touchdowns on eight receptions for 215 yards this season.
   However, with a continued strong defense and a massive game from the maroon backfield, the Warriors will be looking for a big homecoming win this Friday night on the hill.