By Brandon Speck/NEMS Daily Journal
Aberdeen has faced two class favorites in the past two weeks with mixed results.
The Bulldogs, regarded by many as a Class 3A contender, lost 45-0 at home to Class 4A favorite Noxubee County, then went on the road to Class 2A favorite West Bolivar and won 45-28.
“The Noxubee game we were coming off the big win at Amory and we didn’t practice very well all week,” Aberdeen first-year coach Mark Bray said. “It was a combination of things but Noxubee is for real. They’re a great football team.”
Louisville (3-2), another quality opponent, rounds out the Bulldogs’ tough non-division schedule when it visits Lester Miley Stadium this Friday night.
Aberdeen (3-2) has played all but one non-division game against higher-class teams. The Bulldogs have beaten Shannon and Amory after a season-opening loss to 6A Columbus.
“I said from the very beginning that 3-3 would be good and anything better would be great,” Bray said.
Division 2-3A is a two-team race according to most. The top two contenders, Aberdeen and Water Valley, face off Oct. 19 in Aberdeen.
Until then, Bray will have to keep his team focused on three division games it should win.
Justin Lucas and Zay Forshee are leading the way in tackles. Junior back Chico Harrison is the team’s leading rusher. Harrison rushed for 171 yards and a 55-yard touchdown last week in Rosedale.
The Bulldogs defense did more than its part Friday, too, holding the Eagles to 54 yards passing in the first half and zero rushing yards. Mississippi State commit Kailo Moore sat the second half and finished with minus-5 yards on six carries.
“The kids got refocused. We had good practices and went over there and shut them down in the first half,” Bray said. “We struggled a little bit in the second half, but we got after it.”