POPLARVILLE —- The Pearl River Wildcats are hoping to break through to the win column Thursday when they host the No. 20 East Central Warriors (2-1) at Dobie Holden Stadium.
The 6 p.m. game will be streamed at PRCCAthletics.com and can also be heard on WRJW 1320-AM in Pearl River County and WCJU 104.9-FM in Columbia.
The Wildcats are standing at an 0-3 record and coming off a 49-0 loss at South Division foe Copiah-Lincoln.
Despite the early setbacks, head coach Ted Egger is confident his team will get back on track Thursday night as long as they execute to their standard.
"We just didn't make big plays last week," Egger said. "We had a good week of practice so I'm excited to see how we respond to the adversity we've faced so far."
Egger is hoping that he'll be able to rely on some of his playmakers on the offensive side of the ball to establish early positive momentum for the Wildcats.
Sophomore quarterback Tavis Williams (Gulfport; Harrison Central) and sophomore running back Ron Thompson (Bassfield) showed flashes last week but weren't able to sustain any big performances for the entirety of the game.
"You hope Tavis can get something going for us and create a spark to get some momentum," Egger said. "We are going to give Ron the ball early, we want to get him going in the run game.
"We are a talented team that has shown that we can play good football, we just have to be able to do it for four quarters."
East Central Series
PRCC owns a 53-21-4 record against East Central, according to school records.
The two schools have split the last 4 games of the series, with the Wildcats winning 59-40 last year in an exciting shootout. Egger has noted that the Warriors are disciplined and will be a challenge.
"Offensively, East Central tries to out-formation you," Egger said. They run a lot of different formations and defensively they get their kids to play very hard."
By the Numbers
The Wildcats boast one of the more dynamic running backs in the MACJC with Thompson averaging 101 rushing yards per game.
Linebacker Reggie Williams (Hattiesburg) is leading the team with 28 tackles, averaging almost 10 tackles a game.
East Central has played in some nail biting games already this year, losing their season opener to Northwest 28-24, but then bouncing back to defeat Itawamba and Southwest 34-28 and 28-21 respectively.
The Warriors have flashed an explosive offense this season so far, averaging almost 29 points per game.
Sophomore quarterback Mario Asagunia has been deadly this year throwing for seven touchdowns and 415 yards.
Sophomore running back James Smith has also been a playmaker for the Warriors, averaging 114 rushing yards per game.