First Posted: 11/19/2009
After cruising through the first round with a 52-0 win over Rosewood last week, the Mount Airy Granite Bears hope to have a repeat performance in round two.
This week, the West Columbus Vikings (6-6) will come calling to Wallace Shelton Stadium, after a 35-14 first round win over North Stokes.
The Vikings are out of the 1A/2A Three Rivers Conference and are located in Cerro Gordo, just over 60 miles west of Wilmington.
After traveling to North Stokes last week, the Vikings must make a return trip west to take on the Bears, who are looking for their 27th consecutive victory.
Mount Airy coach Kelly Holder said West Columbus relies on 5-10 150 pound senior running back Chris Stephens to carry much of the load offensively.
Stephens was the player of the game last week against North Stokes, accounting for three of the Vikings five touchdowns.
Stephens threw for a touchdown, ran for a touchdown and returned an interception 85-yards for a score.
Hes a really good athlete, Holder said. He does a good job of starting and stopping and is a bit of a slasher. He runs the ball well and does good things for them.
Holder said the Vikings are a straight forward team offensively, with Stephens obviously the focal point.
They run a double wing which is a mixture of the Wing-T and the power game, Holder said. They dont run very many plays out of it. They are going to turn and hand it or pitch it to No. 24 (Stephens) or the other back and every now and then theyll hand it to the fullback up the gut and thats about it.
A week ago, the Bears began their 2009 title defense in a fashion which has become the norm.
Senior running back Andy Temoney bounced back from a tough game to lead the way with 190 yards and three touchdowns.
But after the win over Rosewood, Holder said there was no doubt his team looked slightly sluggish during a portion of the first half.
I thought we had good enthusiasm, I just think we were a little too relaxed maybe, he said. We did not warm up well at all. We didnt catch balls, we didnt throw balls well, we didnt hold, snap and kick well. It took us a little while to get things going up to our standards, I think. Were up 38 to nothing and half-time wasnt a joy ride.
While the Bears still shut out their opponents and scored more than 50 points for the sixth time this season, Holder said he would rather see a game free of miscues and mistakes than a blowout victory.
We want to be the best that we can be, he said. I say this every week but I could care less what the scoreboard says. I would rather play well and win 25-21 than not play well and win 35-0. We just want to play as good as we can play. Thats what we are looking for and the scoreboard has nothing to do with that.
Last week the Northwest 1A/2A Conference announced its all conference football team.
Mount Airy led the way with 17 total players named to the team, highlighted by defensive player of the year Luke Wheeler, specialist of the year Tyler Hull and coach of the year Kelly Holder.
Here are the Bears who made the all-conference list for 2009.
Defense: Justin Collier, Stephen Hart, Brooks Mayberry, Jokton Moore, Andy Temoney, Daryl Valentine and Luke Wheeler.
Offense: Mount Airy: Justin Collier, Ben Hinson, Brooks Mayberry, Josh Smith, Andy Temoney, Daryl Valentine and Luke Wheeler.
Demetrius Rucker and Jordan Schwartz received honorable mention honors.