Patriots need to strong junior class to shine

There aren't too many sports programs that expect to win a state championship every year, but that's the case for Wardlaw, where winning titles is the norm, not the exception.

The Patriots went 6-6 three years ago, and they haven't lost since, putting together consecutive undefeated seasons.

In order to complete the three-peat, a lot of guys are going to need to step up. Wardlaw lost a big senior class, including stand out quarterback Stephen Balentine. And with only 13 players and two seniors, it's going to take a total team effort to keep it going.

Head Coach Chalmers Carr says, "I like the enthusiasm of my juniors. I have two seniors that are solid as a rock. They're going to be great, but my juniors that have been on two state championship teams, they know what it's like, and they don't want to lose that feeling. So, I love what they're doing. They're working hard. We're just down in numbers. We're going to play eight man football with 13, and it's going to be a challenge."

One of the two seniors, Johnathan Graves, is happy with the way the team has come together already, saying, "We just have to keep working. We're out here, and we've been out here for three months now already. We haven't had pads on or anything, but we've been trying pretty hard, and I'm pretty proud of what we've been doing so we just gotta keep up what we're doing."

One thing the Patriots are very confident about is their size. Wardlaw's players were never particularly big in their championship seasons, and Carr says his team's bulk is definitely a good problem to have.


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