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Trojans prepare for Vikings

By Ken K. Green With an off night Friday night, Lamar County used the open week to heal injuries, work on fundamentals and correct mistakes. This week the Trojans are preparing to open defense of their Region 4-AA title when they travel to Butler to take on Taylor County. The Vikings, who join the region after moving up from Class A, were also off Friday but are coming off back-to-back wins after opening the season with a 35-14 loss to Irwin County that saw several of Taylor’s key players sit out as the result of a GHSA mandatory one-game suspension for their part in a fight in the last game of last season, a 40-6 win over Hawkinsville. Taylor County has wins over Central Talbotton (23-14) and Schley County (42-16). The Trojans are 2-0-1 after tying Spalding (3-3) and beating Eagle’s Landing (41-20) and Pike County (44-7). The Vikings are averaging 26.3 points per game while allowing 21.7. Lamar averages 29.3 while yielding 13.3. Taylor boasts a pair of Atlanta Journal-Constitution pre-season all-state linemen in seniors Zeb Locke and Larry Matthews. Sophomore James Whiteman runs the offense, completing 14 of 35 pass attempts for 282 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions. His favorite target is junior Qua Johnson who has 10 catches for 169 yards and one score. A pair of seniors are featured in the Viking backfield. Dalvin Daniely has 38 carries for 379 yards and two touchdowns for the season. Jakevis Howell had 142 yards rushing on 22 carries in a win over Schley County two weeks ago. The Vikings are coached by Chris Kirksey who has a career record of 40-45 in his ninth season, all at Taylor County. The Trojans lead the all-time series 5-3, having won the last four meetings including a 27-6 win here in the last meeting in 1995. The two schools first played in 1976 and Lamar took a 21-0 win on their way to a 7-3 season. The Vikings got revenge the next year in Butler by edging the Trojans 20-19 in a game they trailed 19-0 at the half. Lamar came into Kelvin Harden accounted for all of the 8U Trojans, scoring three touchdowns and an extra point in a 19-12 win over Our Lady of Mercy in Lamar County recreation football action last weekend. Justin Efird scored a pair of touchdowns to lead the 12U Trojans to a 25-7 win over the McDonough Mustangs. Chad Matthews and Kalis Alford had one touchdown each and Jyle Underwood Jr. added a PAT for Lamar. Hudson Spurlock scored two touchdowns and Grayson Jett added a score as the 10U Trojans were edged by Landmark Christian 19-18. The U9U Trojans came up short, losing 7-0 to Landmark Christian and the 6U Trojans were beaten by Peachtree City 31-0.

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