Wossman (3-3, 1-0) at Sterlington (4-2, 1-0), Homecoming, Friday, 7 p.m.
In a matchup of teams looking to improve to 2-0 in District 2-3A, the Sterlington Panthers face the Wossman Wildcats on Friday night. Kickoff time for the Panthers' homecoming game is 7 p.m.
After winning only two games last fall, the Wildcats (3-3, 1-1) have already eclipsed last year's victory total.
"Wossman is a lot better than they were last year," Sterlington coach Lee Doty said. "They are bigger, faster and stronger than probably anybody we have played. They present us with quite the challenge this week."
Wosssman upgraded its coaching staff over the summer with the addition of two former head coaches.
"Dean Smith has done a heck of a job with them," Doty said. "Levi Washington is running their offense and does a great job. They hired former Carroll head coach Jackie Hamilton as well. The guys they brought in are really good coaches."
Wossman opened the season with a 37-34 victory over Benton before dropping three straight to Oak Grove 34-19, West Monroe 56-14 and St. James 45-28. Winners of two straight, the 'Cats are coming off of lopsided wins against Peabody (40-6) and Madison Prep (86-0).
Quarterback Antrell Green and wide receivers Isiah Hudson and Zy Mortle headline the Wildcats' playmakers.
Right guard Jacob Turner (6-2, 369, sr.) and left tackle Graceon Jackson-Smith (6-1, 250, jr.), a pair of veterans, anchor an offensive line which averages 269 pounds per man.
Tackle Detavion Anthony and linebacker De'Marquis Hardwell lead the 'Cats defensively.
"They have a lot more depth than they had last year, which is something they fell good about," Doty said.
Bouncing back from a 37-20 Week 5 loss to Calvary Baptist, the Panthers started conference play off on the right paw with a 52-26 road triumph over Carroll last week.
After fumbling on two of their first four series against Calvary, the Panthers reduced their turnovers from three to one vs. Carroll. Sterlington scored on all six first half possessions en route to building a 42-14 halftime lead.
"We played better, especially offensively," Doty said. "We only had one turnover on a strip sack late in the game. Not having any turnovers in the first half and executing our offense, I thought, were the keys to our victory last week."
Defensively, the Panthers held the Bulldogs to 256 yards of total offense, including 79 yards on 31 rushing attempts.
Sliding over from free safety to Sam linebacker, Cole Jones notched a team-high 10 tackles and a sack. Jones will return to safety Friday night.
"Cole looks like he's in on every play," Doty said. "If he's not making a tackle, he's right there. He's a ball hawk."
Sterlington averages 355.3 yards per game (280.5 rushing, 74.8 passing).
Tailback Dallas Reagor (100 carries, 859 yards, 10 touchdowns) and fullback Jordan Townsend (32-234-3) pace a running game which averages 6.8 yards per carry.
Quarterback Hayes Crockett has completed 19-of-39 passes for 340 yards and six TDs without throwing a pick.
Averaging 17.8 yards per catch, Layton Rainbolt (8 receptions, 142 yards, 3 TDs) is the Panthers' leading receiver. Rainbolt has also returned 10 kickoffs for a 25.7 yard average and four punts at a 7.8-yard clip.
Middle linebacker Willie Holloway (53 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, 1 sack), Jones (48 tackles, 2 TFL, 2 sacks, 2 interceptions), end Justin Fuller (35 tackles, 4 TFL, 3 sacks) and cornerback Trey Eddins (35 tackles, 2 TFL, 2 blocked kicks) show the way defensively.
Junior free safety Reece Brooks, who went down with a broken collarbone in the Bayou Jamb, saw his first action of the regular season last week. He will gradually get more reps as he works his way back into playing shape.
WEEK 6 POWs: Players of the Week for the Carroll game were Layton Rainbolt (offense), Cole Jones (defense) and Jacob Green (special teams).
NEXT: Sterlington embarks on a two-game road swing with stopovers at Madison Parish (Friday, Oct. 19) and Union Parish (Oct. 26) before closing out the regular season at home vs. Richwood on Thursday, Nov. 1.