Lumberton opens division play

By JESSE JOHNSON,

The Lumberton Panthers experienced a road loss to a very good Bay Springs team 24-21 on Friday night.

The Panthers, now 1-2, are looking to get back on track as they host Stringer in the first division game for each team.

Overall Coach Zach Jones was pleased with the effort and knew his team would be in for a battle with a tough non-division schedule.

“I’m proud of our kids,” he said. “I thought we fought and got after it against a really good football team. We have gotten better each week and that’s all I can ask. We knew our non-division schedule would be rough, but I think we are growing as a team and getting better each day. I felt like we had a chance at the end and one chance is all you can ask for against a really good football team. Hats off to Bay Springs. They will win a whole lot of football games. Hopefully it makes us better for later on down the road.”

In this week's preparation against Stringer, Jones will try and clean up some of the mistakes from last week’s loss.

“We need to tackle better. That falls on our coaches,” he said. “That’s what we are going to try and fix in this week’s preparations. Stringer is a good football team, especially on the line of scrimmage.

Junior Omarion Bridges is a standout for the Red Devils. Bridges is averaging six yards per carry with 289 all-purpose yards, adding five touchdowns for the season. Jones is aware that stopping him will be part of this week’s game.

“Last year he played good and will be their workhorse this year,” he said.  “It’s a division opener for both of us, so they will be ready to play hard. We are looking forward to this challenge.

Stringer holds a 1-2 record with losses to Bay Springs and Enterprise, and a win versus Clarkdale. The Red Devils are averaging 63 yards passing and 109 yards on the ground through three games played.

Kickoff is set for 7 pm at Lumberton.