Warriors must battle fatigue, improve defense at GulfportBy JESSE JOHNSON,
Oak Grove started the season looking a little rusty but came through with a tough win, 43-28, against Wayne County Friday night.
The Warriors had an up-and-down night but managed to stay consistent on both defensive and offensive sides of the ball.
Quarterback Damon Stewart, a senior, led the passing attack completing 24 of 34 for 238 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Nick Milsap led the ground game with 15 carries for 105 yards and one touchdown.
Coach Drew Causey said he felt like his team played really well but left a couple of drives out on the field.
“We have a lot of things to be encouraged about, but we’ve just got to get a lot better,” he said. “I think fatigue was a factor in our first game. We had 78 plays on offense. With that many plays in a high school game we got a bit tired. Conditioning is something I think we need to fix going forward.”
On the defensive side, Causey feels like there can be a lot more room for improvement.
“I didn’t think we tackled really well,” he said. “We got tired and that’s definitely something we will fix this week in practice.”
This week’s game will be a test for the Warriors being the first road game and going up against a tough 2-0 Gulfport team.
“They’re a really good football team with a bunch of talent,” Causey said. “Combine those with good coaching and that makes for a really tough road game and a challenge for us. We have to understand that things are a little bit different going on the road, so we’ve just got to see how our guys are going to handle that and make sure we come in game ready.
Causey said the Gulfport team throws the ball well so the Warrior secondary has to be ready to cover.
“We have to make sure to create pressure on the quarterback,” Causey said. “We’ve definitely got our work cut out for us and we are looking forward to Friday’s game.”
Gulfport opened the season with a win against Stone by the score of 48-13, followed by knocking off Northwest Rankin 21-14. The Admirals are averaging 234 yards in the air and 210 rushing yards per game, totaling 10 touchdowns in two games played.
Kickoff is 7pm in Gulfport.