The Vikings want to upset the Tigers on Thursday
Published 1:00 PM on Tuesday, November 1, 2022
- A win on Friday night could help Vidalia Vikings stay on track for the playoffs. The following week they will face a tough series of duels with General Trass. (Cloud Hunter | Democrat Natchez)
VIDALIA – Vidalia High School Vikings are ending their regular season this Thursday night and their Senior Night opponent is one of the best teams in the LHSAA District 2-2A at Oak Grove High School Tigers.
Kick-off between Oak Grove (6-3, 4-1) and Vidalia (6-3, 2-3) at Dee Faircloth Viking Stadium is scheduled for 7pm. Both teams had impressive victories last week. The Tigers beat a good team from General Trass High School last Friday night on Route 51-8, while the Vikings took care of Madison High School 36-6 last Friday night.
Viking coach Michael Norris said Oak Grove would bring their A-match and that his team would have to match the physicality and stamina of the Tigers. If not, it could be a long game for Vidalia.
Regarding what the Vikings will be working on in practice this week, Norris said: “We will be working hard to prepare for one of the best teams in our standings at Oak Grove. They will play soccer. We will have to prepare to fight them. It will be a good test for our team as we prepare for the playoffs.
While Oak Grove was in Class 1A, the Tigers were one of the age-old contenders for the state championship. They won everything in 2019 and 2020 but were eliminated in the third round by Logansport High School, 22-14 last year.
“They were one of the best teams in class 1A. It looked like they were in New Orleans all the time, ”said Norris. “They left 1A and haven’t missed a single strike since they moved to 2A.”
Vidalia moved up to the 18th position on the Non-Select Division III power rating that came out on Monday morning, while Oak Grove is on the 10th place on the Non-Select Division IV rating this week.
And this physicality on either side of the ball that Oak Grove possesses is what worries Norris the most.
“They are insultingly pushing people. They are simply technically sound in defense. They play basically a solid, disciplined defense, ”said Norris.
Before the game, Norris said 10 seniors from the soccer team, one senior manager and two senior coaches would be honored. Winning the last home game of the regular season against a good team Oak Grove would mean everything for them, he added.
“It would show them how far they’ve come as a team and that they can compete with anyone,” said Norris.
Regarding the X-factor in this important district game, Norris said, “Who controls the line of the fight.” He noted that the offensive Viking line did a good job in their victory over the Madison Jaguars. Then he said, “It will be a much more difficult task against Oak Grove.”
Norris said something special when asked who Vidalia would have to ascend and play the big game if the Vikings were to upset the Tigers: “Anyone who wears a Viking suit on the pitch must get up.”
If the offensive line could include Tigers ahead, it would mean quarterback Sema’J Hayes as well as runners Jalin Moody and Kabari Davis could have great performances. The defense will have to hold back a strong attack from Oak Grove to give Vidalia a shot in the fourth quarter.