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Warriors ready for Homecoming

MERRY HILL – Getting ready for the next one is always easier after a win.

Lawrence Academy’s varsity football team got win number one this season Friday when they knocked off Oak Ridge 40-36.

“You can just see the excitement any time u win,” said Lawrence Academy Football Coach Mike Dail. “Winning breeds success and success breeds winning. The kids are excited.”

Dail said he was happy for his team and the success they had Friday. He was also happy for Offensive Coordinator Brian Dail and Defensive Coordinator Grantley Mizelle.

“To be honest, I wasn’t sure how I would react to a win after being retired for those years,” Dail said. “I know the losses didn’t sting as bad, but I thought that was mostly because of knowing where we were this season.

“For those two young guys, it was just great to see them have success,” he continued. “To see them grow, mature, make mistakes and learn from those mistakes has been as satisfying as anything all year.”

Dail and his team held on after claiming a fourth quarter lead against Oak Ridge and look to make it two in a row this week.

As he looks forward to the visit of Cresset Christian Friday night, Dail said little has changed as far as what they’re preparing for.

Cresset is 0-7 for the year, but Dail said they have shown a lot of fight in their first year as a program.

“They’ve been putting up good numbers,” Dail said. “They’ve scored three or four touchdowns against some good competition.

“We played a team more talented than we are last week and we were able to outplay them and get a win,” he continued. “We’ll have to do the same this week.”

An added dimension to this week’s football game is that it is Homecoming Week at Lawrence Academy. Dail said while he wants his team to stay focused, he also wants them to enjoy the week.

“I don’t think you can remove the distractions of Homecoming because they are students and they’re involved in all that stuff,” Dail said. “They’re part of the student body and you want them to be. They’re only going to go this way one time.

“To think you’re going to take the kids out of the Homecoming environment, it’s just not going to happen,” he continued. “What we’ll do is tell them that come Friday at 3 p.m. when the pep rally is over, we’re going to step away and get ready for football.”

When they focus strictly on the football game Friday, the coach is hoping to see his offensive line continue to develop.

“We’ve struggled on the offensive line this year,” he said. “I see potential there, but we need those guys to step up Friday

night.

“We also need the receivers to do a better job of catching the football,” he added. “We’re better at it, but we still have to make some strides.”

The Warriors will get the chance to win their second in a row at 7:30 p.m. Friday when they host Cresset Christian.