The Wildcats (0-2, 0-2 Region 5-AAAAA) dropped their season opener against South Paulding before falling by six at Hiram last week. With every game counting, time is of the essense for a first win of the season. On the other side of the field are the Patriots (0-4, 0-4), who haven't found the win column yet this season either.
"I would expect to see the same offense and same defense, just continuing to get better. They're like us. They're looking for their first win. I expect them to get after it and try to win — like hopefully we're going to," VR coach Mike Falleur said.
The second-year Wildcat coach believes his team has improved over the past two weeks enough to come out with a win Friday night, especially with the effort put up against — what Falleur considers to be — one of the best teams in the region.
"I was extremely pleased with the way our kids played [last week]. The effort, the improvement we made from Week 1 to Week 2, and we had every opportunity to win the game at the end and we just didn't do it. I think Hiram's probably one of the better teams in our league. I'm excited that this is our next game," Falleur said.
The next game comes after a scrimmage and two games worth of the Wildcats growing up under the lights of Friday night. Now they will look to put a complete game together and try to come out with the victory.
"First of all, it's across the board. It's not been the running backs or this or this — it's been everybody. The effort and intensity that they've played for so many of them being out there the first first time on Friday nights, I've been pleased with that. Our tackling, our defense has improved. I'm not going to say we're a great tackling team yet, but we're a lot better than when we scrimmaged against Central," Falleur said. "The third thing that sticks out is our offensive line. They've improved tremendously from Central to South Paulding to Hiram. Hopefully, we will continue to improve in that area."
And while the Wildcats have played Hiram, Paulding County has played Class AAAAA No. 5 East Paulding, seventh-ranked Allatoona and Hiram in three of its four games.
Now the two will meet with one team earning its first win of the season and the other sent back to the drawing board once again.
"They've had a rough early schedule and they're in the same situation we're in. They need a win. I'm sure our kids understand that, their kids understand that. It's going to come down to who goes out there and plays the hardest and makes fewer mistakes. Hopefully, that will be us," Falleur said.