After having a bye week, Liberty County heads to Burke County High School on Friday for a Region 3-AAAAA contest and the Panthers’ first game in two weeks.
“First thing we did was try and get healthy. We didn’t practice every day last week … our offensive line still needs to come off the rock on every play … defensive line still need to tackle better … we just tried to work on getting better as a team,” Liberty County head coach Kirk Warner said, describing the last two weeks of practice.
The coach said that after some easy days of practice to give injured players time to get better, the Panthers went back to work on tackling and stripping away the ball defensively. The offense worked on its option play with sophomore Jaalon Frazier getting the snaps. Senior quarterback Walker Franklin could miss the rest of the season after sustaining a wrist injury against Wayne County two weeks ago.
Warner said the Bears could pose a problem for his offense but Burke County is also rebuilding.
“Our offense has been a little slow this year … they (Burke) are good and they are athletic, but they are not the typical Burke County team … any time you lose someone like Donquell Green, he was a four-year starter for them and he was about 70-80 percent of their offense … It will make then take a little step back,” Warner said. “They actually lost a lot of skilled guys on their offense, but when you look at them, it’s their defense that jumps out at you … it is a very aggressive and very fast defense.”
The Bears, 3-3 and 1-0 in the region, are led offensively by quarterback Caleeb Roberson. In his last three games, “Scoot,” as his Bear teammates call him, has completed 20 of 40 passes for 189 passing yards and two touchdowns. Scoot also led the team in rushing in that span with 335 yards on 52 carries. Overall, the Bears have amassed 208 yards on the ground in those games.
Frazier has played in six games and has completed 6 of 25 passes for 166 yards and a touchdown. If needed, the Panthers have all-around athlete Richard LeCounte, who is 2-for-3 passing for 44 yards and one touchdown. The Panthers have 866 yards on the ground to date.
Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.