Poplarville Hornets still rolling

Fresh off its first ever state title game appearance, the Poplarville football program hasn’t skipped a beat in 2017. The class 4A Hornets have ripped off five straight wins to start the season, setting the stage for a battle of the unbeaten to open up district play.
Taking down Greene County would be a tone-setter for the reigning south state champs as they set out to finish last year’s business.
Hornet pride means a little bit more as the reigning south state champs. Head Coach Jay Beech said, “We had some high expectations coming into the season, going to a state championship and everything. The kids learned a lot from that experience and they wanted to get back.”
And returning seniors like Peytan Graham and DJ Travis are out to protect that success. “Don’t get complacent, just don’t be happy with where you’re sitting at now. There’s always more, there’s more to do. We can’t just sit here and be happy with what we’ve done so far, we’ve got a lot more to go through. A lot more practices and a lot more games to be pushed through,” said Graham.
“Like Coach has said that’s the past and this right here is starting over, so we’ve got to take it even more. We’ve got to have more responsibility, just to go hard every Friday,” said Travis.
But this Friday isn’t just any Friday, it’s Poplarville’s first region 7 clash of the year. Standing in the way of unfinished business is 6-0 Greene County and both teams can’t leave the hornet’s nest undefeated. “This is what people want to see, so we’re going to give them a show.”
“They can still beat us and we can still beat them. It’s going to be a good match-up and someone’s 0 has got to go.”
Even if the Hornets can sting their way past a Wildcat defense giving up less than ten points a game, repeating as district champs just got that much harder. “Well it would definitely put a bigger target than we already have on us, so that means we’re just going to have to push harder and work harder and just beat everyone else in the district to do what we’ve got to do to get to where we want to be.”
Where the Hornets want to be is much the same as last year. Dating back to 2016, they’ve won 17 out of their last 18 games. That one loss to Lafayette in the 4A title game would be the lone change, starting with another region 7 crown. “Well our ultimate goal right now is to win a district championship. That’s what we’re going to try to do, focus on winning the district championship. Our district is tough, got a lot of good teams in it. And we don’t want to look ahead, we want to win the district and that starts Friday night.”
“We do have a big expectation this year, and we’re just trying to fulfill it each day. Our motto this year is win the day so we’re just taking it one day at a time each day at practice trying to win that day. If we have a bad day at practice then we lose that day, so we’ve just got to take it one day at a time and reach them expectations one at a time.”
Poplarville will welcome the Wildcats to the Hornet’s Nest at 7 p.m. on Friday.

Categories: Local Sports, Sports

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