LAUREL, Miss. - One of the biggest Jones County rivalries is going down Friday.
Both Laurel and West Jones are really looking forward to battling each other.
These two teams are currently sitting at 3-1.
Laurel head coach, Todd Breland said, “They’re good up front on defense. They have a big running back who’s a load to bring down. But they just play West Jones Football, tough hard-nosed kids.”
“When you’re looking at Laurel, the big thing is the quarterback, Tyquan Ulmer. He’s a big-time player and the wide-outs are really, really good. So from a skill standpoint, they’re extremely talented and their front seven on defense are real, real good,” said West Jones head coach, Scott Pierson.
Both coaches said they didn’t really have to motivate their kids this week.
Laurel strong safety, Jalon Thigpen said, “I’m ready. I’ve been ready to play this game since the beginning of the season, to see who’s going to the playoffs.”
“It’ll be terrific to get the W against Laurel. I see them as a big rival always, and it’ll just be great to get a win over them this time,” said West Jones cornerback, Tyrek Boyd.
Laurel won its last three meetings against West Jones and the Golden Tornadoes plan to win another one with their star-studded offense.
Laurel wide receiver, Je’Vah Jones said, “We’ve been playing together since elementary: me, Ulmer, and (Dontario) Drummond. We all got a connection. Ulmer knows where to put the ball at on us. He knows what we like and what we don’t like. He knows how to throw it, where nobody can get it but us.”
But, the Mustangs have some real horsepower in their backfield.
West Jones running back, John Oliver said, “My o-line when I’m doing bad, they pick me up and get open holes for me. So I hit them hard.”
One of the most intriguing battles between these two teams, will be the cornerback and wide receiver match-up.
Jones said “we studied a little film on them. They’re very young. We can see they really can’t think the game right now. With us being bigger than the other corners, they kind of scared, you can look at their eyes and tell.”
But, Boyd is ready for the task at hand.
“He’s a great receiver and he competes in the air for the ball. He’s going to be a challenge, but I feel like I can step up to the plate and challenge him a little bit,” said Boyd.
Both Laurel and West Jones want this win and will do their best to get it.
“Play how we play. Don’t play to make mistakes. Just play loose and have fun,” said Thigpen.
“It’ll be amazing. I can talk stuff to them now,” said Oliver.
Kickoff will be Friday night at 7 at Laurel High School.