Mega-matchups highlight Week 3

Published 9:14 pm Thursday, August 30, 2012

Southside running back Donshae Miller (center) runs with the ball during the Seahawks’ 42-0 win over Creswell on Monday. Tonight, Southside will travel to Pamlico to play in the Fossil Bowl. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

Week 3 of the prep football season promises to be one of the best of the year as Southside will travel to Pamlico to play in the Fossil Bowl, Riverside heads to South Creek for the Battle for the Paddle and undefeated reigning NE Coastal Conference champs Edenton will go to Plymouth to take on the defending Four Rivers Conference Vikings, who also sport a perfect record.
Here’s a look at the matchups:

Southside (1-1) at Pamlico (0-2)
Southside put its season-opening 48-14 loss to North Duplin behind it on Monday as it cruised past Creswell 42-0 to earn its first win of the year. However, while Seahawks’ coach DeWayne Kellum doesn’t want his team to dwell on the loss to North Duplin, he would like to see his club learn from it.
The Rebels stormed past Southside in Week 1 thanks to their effective option-based attack and tonight the Seahawks will face another option-heavy team when they travel to Pamlico to play in the Fossil Bowl.
“North Duplin hurt us with the option,” Kellum said. “Creswell didn’t run much option so this will be a big test for us. We need to play assignment football on defense.”
The Hurricanes (0-2, Carolina Conference) are coming off a 22-8 loss Northside in Week 2. Despite its winless record, Kellum said that the Pamlico should not be overlooked.
“They got two or three speedy guys,” Kellum said. “We will have to execute and show up and play. They have potential to put points on the board.”
So does the Seahawks, as they showed in their blowout of Creswell when they rushed for 218 yards on 22 attempts, led by running backs Rokeem Miller, Donshae Miller, Andrew Jones and Johnnie Pender. Pender tallied two TDs in the win, while both Miller’s scored once, as did Jones.
“On offense we have to create some holes and punch through them and just keep punching,” Kellum said.
The Southside defense showed tremendous improvement from Week 1 as it caged the Tigers’ rushing attack by holding them to 30 yards on 13 carries and Kellum will look for that same effort tonight.
“We just have to keep getting better,” Kellum said. “We have to go out there and continue to execute correctly.”

Riverside (0-2) at South Creek (0-2)
Tonight’s Battle for the Paddle will take on extra significance as Martin County and Four Rivers Conference rivals Riverside and South Creek each head into this year’s game searching for their first win of the season.
Both teams are coming off tough losses as the Knights fell 37-0 to Edenton on Saturday and Northampton County cruised past the Cougars 54-6.
The Battle for the Paddle, which counts as a non-conference game, heads into its third year of existence and so far has been dominated by Riverside, who is 2-0 in the matchup.
South Creek coach Jeremy Jones is looking to buck that trend, and more importantly, remove the zero from the Cougars’ win column.
“They’re the crosstown rivals and have had the upper hand on us every time we’ve played so far,” Jones said. “Right now it’s a chance for us to forget about last week and right some wrongs. … A win tonight can help set up the rest of our season.”
Knights’ coach Asim McGill felt the same way.
“It’s a big time rivalry game, our kids know and their kids know,” McGill said. “Their kids will play up and our kids will play up. … The one thing about the game is you got two teams that are looking for their first win of the season and the one good thing is somebody’s going to leave that game with their first win.”
In the past, Riverside has exploited defenses with speedy athletes that can kill opponents on the edge. Led by burly fullback Jadarian Brown, this year’s Knights team is a little more rugged and McGill said he will make some adjustments to adapt to the talent on his roster.
“In the past five years we’ve been a team that’s been very explosive but this year we might have to change our philosophy a little bit,” McGill said. “We’ve looked at some things in practice that we like so you might see some changes Friday night.”
Regardless of how the Knights align, Jones knows the key is to contain Brown.
“Defensively, we have to stop the fullback,” Jones said. “They line up in a lot of different formations and we have to make sure we adjust to each one and don’t get caught out of position.”
The Cougars will counter with a big back of their own, as they will strike behind Jaquan Durham.
“Durham is a running back this year and he’s a physical player,” McGill said. “They are going to come out and run the option and we have to stop it.”

Edenton (2-0) at  Plymouth (2-0)
Tonight the Vikings will face their toughest challenge of the season so far as they will host defending NE Coastal Conference champs Edenton in what should be great contest.
Both teams have gotten off to a hot start as Plymouth, who split the Four Rivers Conference crown with Manteo last season, downed Farmville Central 52-20 before topping Northampton County 32-2 last week. The Aces have been equally as strong as they beat Corinth Holders 63-21 in Week 1 and then blanked Riverside 37-0 last week.
“They’ve only lost one game in two years and we’ve only lost two,” Plymouth coach Robert Cody said. “They’re pretty good.”
The Vikings could be without key running backs Quadree Pettiford and Carl McCray, as both suffered injuries against Northampton and are both game-time decisions.
Whether they play or not, Cody said the key for his team is to limit turnovers and penalties.
“If we hang on to that football and do the things we’re supposed to do then we can have a good game,” Cody said. “We have to cut down on our penalties. We had 13 last week, you can’t do that and beat people.”