Tale of two seasons for Laney High School

Published: Sep. 9, 2022 at 6:49 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 10, 2022 at 12:16 AM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - We continue our Under the Light’s coverage with the Laney Wildcats, who have been doing everything they can to put some respect on their names and their football program.

Laney is 2-0 for the first time since 2007 and they feel like they have something to prove this season.

They feel underestimated and disrespected after very little success in past seasons. Players say they’ve gained a bad reputation and they’re looking to restore their name.

Past seasons behind the chain-linked fence of Laney’s stomping grounds have looked abysmal.

Last year was the first time they made the playoffs since 2016.

“Every year is different and every year you’re thinking about the team that you have and setting goals for that team,” said Ronnie Baker, head football coach.

It’s Baker’s second season at the helm.

“I hear it’s a big deal, but this is where we thought we’d be, this is where we wanted to be, this is why we worked hard in the offseason to be here,” said Baker.

Reputations are on the line.

“We hear all the things and talking that goes on around town, but until you know the kids then you’ll have a better understanding of what kind of kids we have here,” he said.

The players hear what’s being said about their team.

“Laney’s not good and Laney is a dead program now, but we want to bring it back. We have always been underestimated and it’s just Laney. Everybody is underestimating Laney,” said a football player.

This season could change the future of this program.

Another player said: “This year will really set a new dynasty for Laney football. Our experience is going to win us a lot of games.”

Coaches say to stay disciplined and don’t get caught up with current success.

Baker said: “Let’s not glorify 2-0 because we didn’t set out this year saying we want to be 2-0. We want to be 10-0 at the end of the season so we have to keep pushing forward and not looking back to what we did two weeks ago.”

The keys to winning Friday’s game are the big fellas up front on both sides of the ball.

If they can control the line of scrimmage, run the ball, and stop the run, they believe they can beat anyone.