Eastern Carolina 2-A Conference media days
Published 2:07 pm Wednesday, August 7, 2019
AYDEN — Media days always signifies the beginning of football season, and the 2-A Eastern Carolina Conference coaches met at Bum’s restaurant in Ayden on Tuesday afternoon to speak with the media and give their predictions on how the conference will shape up at the end of the season.
After being voted to finish fourth in the conference last season, the Kinston Vikings were predicted to win the conference for the second consecutive season. The Vikings finished with a 12-1 record last season, going unscathed in conference play at 6-0.
Last season, they went 6-0 in games decided by 10 points or less. Head coach Ryan Gieselman spoke on his team’s attitude when it comes to the fourth quarter of close games.
“Our guys just have a different attitude in the fourth quarter,” Gieselman said.
Kinston will continue to run the spread under an athletic quarterback in junior quarterback Demetri Holmes. Gieselman said that senior wide receiver Khari Pitts and senior Kaceion Williams at offense and defensive line are also players to watch out for.
Finishing fourth in the conference last year, the Washington Pam Pack received one vote out of all the coaches to win the conference in 2019 for the first time since 2015, when the Pack were still in the Eastern Plains 2-A conference.
Head coach Jon Blank talked about the vote and how he felt about being predicted to finish fourth in the conference.
“We know that were a much improved program, we’re coming off a JV conference championship and we’ve got a lot of kids returning that got a lot of playing time last year,” Blank said. “We’ve still got to fine-tune some things and some kids that need to grow up a little bit, but we know what we’re doing and we feel really good, and positive about the kids and the coaches.”
The top four teams in the conference all received at least one vote in the poll to win the conference. Blank explained that it was a testament to just how difficult the conference is.
“Every Friday night in this conference is just an all out battle,” Blank said. “We feel like the top five teams every year are in the running for the conference championship. There’s so much talent and good coaching in this conference that every single Friday night you have to bring your A-game to get out alive.”
The conference polls are determined by the amount of teams in their conference. There are seven teams in the conference. So, a first-place vote receives seven points, second-place receives six, and so on.
Eastern Carolina 2-A Coaches Poll (first place votes in parentheses)
- Kinston 32 (3)
- Ayden Grifton 30 (1)
- West Craven 29 (2)
- Washington 23 (1)
- Greene Central 15
- South Lenoir 10
- North Lenoir 8
(Poll from Neuse News)