Old rivals WC, Clinton set for latest installment

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 24, 2008

For Warren Central, all games are big from here on out and that includes tonight’s clash with rival Clinton.

The Vikings (3-4, 2-2 Region 2-A) got back into the Class 5A playoff mix with last week’s come-from-behind 23-21 win over Murrah at Newell Field in Jackson. With wins in their final three games, the Vikings could seal up a No. 3 seed from Region 2-5A and avoid having to play top-ranked South Panola in the opening round of the playoffs.

“Our kids know every game now is an important game and this week it’s Clinton,” Warren Central coach Curtis Brewer said. “If we can win our remaining games we go to the playoffs, but we’ve got to get by Clinton first.”

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

The Arrows (5-3, 2-2) have been up and down club this season. They got off to a good start, losing only to third-ranked Oak Grove in week two in the first four weeks. They beat Brandon decisively but in region play, they were crushed by Madison Central (51-14) and lost last week to Northwest Rankin.

“Offensively, they can run up and down the field. They are very solid on offense and make you play assignment football. Stat wise, they gain a lot of yardage and then make little mistakes like a penalty or a fumble that stops the drive,” Brewer said.

Clinton is more option-based this season after losing star quarterback Wesley Mounger and his top two receivers in Marti Shelby and Steve Williams. Brent Chappell runs the offense.

“Brent handles the option well for them,” Brewer said. “The Shelby kid (Derius) can score anywhere on the field and was the Player of the Week in Jackson a couple of weeks ago.”

Chappell has completed 41-of-82 of his passes for 551 yards and four touchdowns. He’s been intercepted six times. Akiko Thompson, a 160-pound sophomore halfback, is the top rusher with 537 yards and seven touchdowns. Fullback Kelvin Graven adds 333 yards and three scores rushing.

Defensively, Clinton will alternate between a 4-3 and a 3-4 defense.

“Real aggressive on defense. They average about 196 pounds on that side. They like to bring the linebackers,” Brewer said.

Senior Javonte Donaldson (6-0, 220) leads the Arrows unit at middle linebacker. Senior Daniel McGowan and sophomore Caleb Smith are solid.

The Vikings should get back leading rusher Joel Forbes tonight. Forbes sat out the Murrah game with a hamstring pull. He has rushed for 587 yards this season.

“Joel’s worked more this week and should play. Joe Harris (foot) came back last week but didn’t stay long. He just couldn’t push off his foot,” Brewer said.

Sophomore Zack Carter has filled in for Harris at middle linebacker and has now taken the lead in tackles with 47. Safety David Cosby is right behind with 46. Larry Davis, who had two interceptions against Murrah, now has four on the season and leads Warren County.

Quarterback Keaton Sanders leads the WC offense with 570 yards passing and four scores. He threw for 130 yards and two TDs against Murrah. Cordell Valentine continues to lead area receivers with 28 catches for 330 yards.


Contact Jeff Byrd at jbyrd@vicksburgpost.com.