Game scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday
Undefeated Havelock is scheduled to host an 0-5 team Thursday, but Coach Jim Bob Bryant said his players won’t have a problem getting up to play this particular 0-5 team.
“It’s West Carteret,” Bryant said. “There’s not a lot of love lost between Havelock and West Carteret, so we won’t have any problem getting up for this game.”
The Rams and Patriots, separated by about 15 miles, are scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m. Thursday at Havelock High. Originally scheduled for Friday, the game was moved to Thursday in an attempt to beat predicted heavy rain that is in the forecast.
The game is also the Coastal 3A Conference opener for both teams.
“We don’t take anybody lightly,” Bryant said. “We always say ‘respect all and fear none.’”
After losing 34-30 to the Patriots in 2010 — a loss that ended the Rams’ 22-game winning streak over West Carteret — Havelock has dominated the series, winning five straight by a combined score of 320-63, an average margin of victory of 51.4 points.
This year’s West Carteret team has struggled defensively, allowing an average of 39.8 points per game in losses to Northside, East Carteret, Croatan, D.H. Conley and Eastern Wayne. The Patriots lost 47-17 in the first week of the season to Northside, a team Havelock beat 43-0 last week.
Still, the Patriots have shown the ability to move the football behind quarterback Rodney Mitchell. West Carteret averages 22.2 points per game.
The Rams survived a tough non-conference slate undefeated but not necessarily unblemished. Despite Havelock victories over Washington, New Bern, New Hanover, Greenville Rose and Northside, Bryant said the coaches were able to identify weaknesses they hoped to fix heading into league play.
“We’ve seen a lot of good things and a lot of bad things,” he said. “That’s what playing good people will do. It exposes your weaknesses and has given us something to work on going into the conference.”