Lawrence readies for one of state’s best

Published 2:37 pm Thursday, September 3, 2009

MERRY HILL – With one challenge down, another lurks Friday night for Lawrence Academy.

The Warriors took the season-opener last week in their visit to Parrott Academy, winning a 33-32 overtime decision when Patrick Dilday booted an extra point. This week, however, they’ll be facing one of the top teams in the eight-man league when St. David’s pays a visit.

“We got down by two touchdowns, but finally got our kids to understand what they were doing offensively,” said Lawrence Head Football Coach Mike Dail. “Once we did that, our kids really went to work. It’s probably the best game we’ve played in my three years back.”

Parrott won the overtime toss and took the football. They scored, but missed the extra point. The Warriors scored on third down and goal when quarterback Cade Larabee found Shane Leggett in the corner of the endzone. Dilday’s extra point gave the Warriors a 1-0 mark on the season.

“It’s certainly been a different week in practice,” Dail said. “When you win, you feel good about yourself, but reality has hit as well. We have one of the best teams in the state coming here Friday night.”

St. David’s demolished Halifax Academy last week, defeating the Vikings 48-14.

“They have a great quarterback who really picked us apart here two years ago,” Dail said. “They’re big, they’re fast and they’re very fast.”

The coach said his team would focus on containing the speed St. David’s would bring.

“We have to contain their speed,” he stressed. “We can’t stop it, but we have to contain it and turn it in and allow our linebackers and corners to make some plays. We’ve been working on it. Hopefully that will pay off.”

Dail said the Warriors would need to be able to play well defensively and to move the ball on offense, which meant they would need to be able to pass the football.

“Our receivers have to catch the ball when we put it on their hands and we have to give the quarterback time to throw it,” Dail said. “We did that last week. If our offensive line and wide receivers get the job done, we’ll have a chance.”

Dail said the biggest concern with St. David’s was absolutely the team speed.

“Their speed is our biggest concern,” he said. “That’s the name of the eight-man game. If you don’t have it, you better find some or you better get used to losing.”

The game Friday will be the Warriors’ home-opener and that is a plus, according to their coach.

“It’s always good to play in Merry Hill,” he said. “It’s good because we don’t have to travel and because we get to play in front of the home crowd.

“Our only problem is that it seems our toughest games the last three years have been at home,” Dail said. “Maybe that’s just how it seems, but we certainly have a tough one Friday.”

The varsity football contest is slated to kick off at 7:30 p.m.