By: Taylor Herring
Coming to the end of a successful season, the Warriors have one thing on their minds: playoffs. After getting the regular season off to a great start by beating Bassfield 30-20, and defeating long-time rivals, the Petal Panthers, the Warrior football team feels prepared. Although the Panthers brought a competitive spirit, their ability on the field simply did not match that of the Warriors. The players came off the field with another success at home, with a final score of 28-18.
With two home game victories under their belt, Oak Grove traveled to Laurel High School to test their skills on the road. The final score was closer than expected, but the Warriors walked away with yet another win, 21- 20. After Laurel, the team had two weeks off before playing against the Wingfield Falcons for homecoming. These two weeks off actually worked to the team’s advantage, because it gave quarterback James McMahon’s injury from the first game a bit more time to heal. Going into the game with much deserved confidence, the team beat Wingfield
The undefeated Warriors traveled to Natchez the next week. Although Oak Grove was projected to win this game, Natchez came back in the fourth quarter to win 48-45. This upsetting loss must have truly made an impact on the players, however, because the team practiced diligently with hopes of beating Meridian.
What a difference a week makes. The Y’all vs. Us game on October 9th was a completely different ballgame. The Warriors truly wanted nothing more than to prevail against the Wildcats; and they were happy to welcome McMahon back on the field. After weeks worth of rivaled foresight about the game, fans, players, and media crowded the stadium. Finally, just as many students predicted, Oak Grove walked away from the game victorious with a final score of 28-20. “It was truly the most exciting football game we’ve ever played in. The atmosphere was unreal; and it was an experience I’ll never forget,” James McMahon, quarterback, said.
The team went on to beat Terry on the road, 14-10. Although Oak Grove was expected to win by more than a four point margin, the team was able to walk off the field content with another victory. The next week, Oak Grove suffered an upsetting loss to the Hattiesburg Tigers, 28-42. This set-back obviously encouraged the Warriors to practice even harder, because they came back to beat Brandon 16-10 the next week. This game was especially upsetting to Brandon, because it means they won’t be in the playoffs.
All of Oak Grove’s hard work and dedication truly paid off this season, and it was definitely evident on the field. Looking back on the season, the Warriors cannot help but feel confident about the playoffs which begin tonight when Oak Grove faces off against a talented Harrison Central team.