Water Valley returns home, faces tougher test in Calhoun City

Published 9:11 pm Wednesday, August 31, 2016

After spending the first two weeks on the road, Water Valley is looking forward to not hopping on a school bus to get to a game this week.

The Blue Devils (1-1) begin their home schedule with Calhoun City up first on Friday (7 p.m., 105.5 FM). The Wildcats (1-1) defeated Water Valley 50-12 last year at Calhoun City.

Splitting the first two games of the season with an opening loss to Eupora followed by a shellacking of Coffeeville in last week’s Railroad Rivalry game, head coach Brad Embry still does not have a good read on who his team is. With a 55-0 win over the Pirates last week, the only thing Embry used the game film for was to see if all those points were scored the right way and if every play was exectued properly.

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“I saw improvement from the previous week,” Embry said. “It was a small sample size. It was only 15 or so gradeable plays of the varsity kids for the most part. You have a small sample size so you’re careful about a grade, but you take what you have and write down what you need to work on.”

This week’s practices have seen morale improved, which is what will happen with a win. The chance to play at home has also added an extra step in players this week.

Measuring stick
Calhoun City opened their season against Coffeeville with a 61-0 victory. Much like Water Valley’s game against Eupora, it was a much tougher game for the Wildcats against Houston last week. Houston defeated them 21-7.

“We played Calhoun City after Houston last year, and when you play a good opponent, it’s a good measuring stick,” Embry said. “Like I’ve thought, Calhoun City is a really good football team.

They’re fast as Calhoun City always is it seems. The thing with them playing Houston, they probably found out some things they needed to work on where as maybe we didn’t as it was a little too easy (against Coffeeville).”

The Wildcats are led by quarterback JoJo Gray. Gray is 4-for-9 passing for 55 yards. Most of their damage has been done on the ground as Calhoun City already has three players with more than 100 yards rushing, including Gray. Senior Jessie Nabors leads with 167 yards on 11 carries and four touchdowns. Junior Treshone Cooper has 137 yards on eight carries and one touchdown.