Warren Central hosts powerful Pearl squad

Published 10:10 am Thursday, August 27, 2015

Josh Morgan always said over the summer the first few games of the season would be tough. His Warren Central Vikings were matched up against two Class 5A semifinalists, Wayne County and Pearl, to kick off the season.

The Vikings lost their Red Carpet Bowl matchup against Wayne County 42-28 after its defensive flame burned out early in the game. They’ll look to fix those mistakes in Friday’s game against Pearl.

“Our first three or four series we were very good, good enough to win,” Morgan said. “Basically in a nutshell, we had piles and piles of missed tackles. Every time we missed they made us pay for it.”

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The defense gave up seven plays of 20 yards or more to Wayne County, and the secondary is full of brand new faces.

However, Kamren Ellis played tough and fought through injuries while assisting or recording tackles on a number of drives. Morgan hopes Ellis can sustain this level of play for the rest of the season.

Morgan also hopes by scheduling two tough opponents early in the schedule, it’ll make the Vikings a better team later in the season. Wayne County and Pearl have similar offensive schemes and personnel, especially on the offensive line.

The Pirates defeated Richland 56-0 in their season opener. They play a tough, physical style, like to run the football, will be good on special teams and have an aggressive defense.

Pearl lost to Oxford in the North State championship game last year and has a lot of returning players on offense and defense. This will be another big test for the Vikings.

Pearl’s offensive line averages 300 pounds. They outweigh the Vikings’ defensive line by 100 pounds. Pearl’s offensive line helped the team pile up 233 rushing yards and six touchdowns in the win over Richland.

“As a group their offensive line is very impressive,” Morgan said.

Morgan has watched film on the Pirates and is expecting well-executed plays from quarterback Le’darius Carpenter and receivers Johnquarise Patterson and Javerous Pierce.

Carpenter, a senior, has thrown for more than 2,000 yards each of the last two seasons. Patterson is only a sophomore, but had 40 receptions for 586 yards and eight touchdowns in 2014. Pierce is also a sophomore and in his first season as a starter.

“They have a quarterback who’s a very cool customer. He’s not overly big but he runs the offense extremely well. They have two wideouts who can make plays to where you just can’t stack up against the box.” Morgan said.

Starting the season with a loss is tough for the Vikings, who are anxious to get the taste out of their mouth.

“We’re not used to it nor do we want to be used to it. We all are in this thing together and this is an important week in our football team,” Morgan said. “It can make us stronger or tear us apart. This is a big week for us.”

Up next

Pearl at Warren Central

Friday, 7 p.m.

Radio: 105.5 FM

For live scoring updates on Friday night, visit facebook.com/thevicksburgpost and twitter.com/vicksburgpost

WC in the spotlight

Warren Central’s home game with Pearl on Friday night is one of the biggest in the state this week, and will garner statewide attention. “Home Cookin’ Sports,” a statewide sports radio call-in show, will broadcast from Viking Stadium beginning at 6 p.m. Friday. Jackson television stations WJTV and WLBT/WDBD will also air live pregame segments at approximately 6:15 p.m. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.