It may be early, but Friday’s game between Havelock and D.H. Conley may just turn out to be a battle for the Coastal 3A Conference title.
The undefeated Vikings and Rams are scheduled to play at 7 p.m. Friday at Havelock High.
"Every game we play from here on out, we’re playing for a conference championship," Havelock coach Jim Bob Bryant said. "It starts Friday night against Conley.
"They’re a really good team. They’re very efficient with what they do offensively and defensively. Coach (Brian) Paschal gets the best out of his players, and it will be a tough matchup for us."
Conley’s wing-T offense is designed to produce methodical drives. In last week’s 39-8 victory over West Craven, the Vikings (5-0, 1-0) had 299 yards rushing behind Walker Cummings, Maleek Gorham and Johnathan Shrock, all of whom rushed for at least 55 yards. The Vikings average 39.8 points per game.
"They’re moving the chains and keeping the other team’s offense off the field," Bryant said.
The Vikings lost to the Rams 42-28 last year, but challenged Havelock with 331 yards on the ground.
"We’ve got to be able to stop their run game," Bryant said. "And, I think we’ve got to move the chains on offense and not turn the ball over."
Bryant said Conley’s cover-2 defense will cause the Rams to make some adjustments offensively.
"We’ll make a couple of changes here and there with our passing game, but our base offense will remain the same with just a couple of tweaks," Bryant said.
Bryant said Friday’s contest would be another where the Rams have a bull’s eye on their backs.
"We’ll be the hunted, but I think they (the players) are relishing that role," Bryant said.