Port Gibson at Hollandale Simmons

Published 11:39 am Thursday, August 18, 2011

With an experienced team that made the Class 4A playoffs last year, Port Gibson coach Lynn Lang wanted a tougher opener for his club. He will get it with a trip to Hollandale to battle the Simmons Blue Devils.

“This is as good a team as I have had and I feel we could upgrade the schedule. That’s why I picked up Hollandale Simmons, and then Coahoma County the following week, to open up the season,” Lang said. “We need to be tested early. Since I’m from Greenville, I know Hollandale Simmons has been a good consistent program.”

The Blue Devils went 8-5 last year, making it to the second round of the Class 2A playoffs. In 2007, they advanced to the Class 2A finals. They have a new coach, but he comes from one of the state’s best programs. Rodger Benton was the offensive line coach at West Point and all the Green Wave did last year was go 15-0 and win the Class 5A state title.

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Port Gibson returns nine starters from an offense that averaged 24.7 points per game last season. Quarterback Silento Sayles leads the way after passing for 1,600 yards. Mississippi State commit Adarius Barnes is Port Gibson’s two-way threat at receiver and safety.

“We’re ready to come out and play,” Barnes said.