SEASON OPENER: Dawgs go for three in a row over Taft Youth Center


CELINA-The Clay County Bulldogs will try to open the David Maxfield coaching era with a win and beat Taft Youth Center for a third straight year here Friday night.

The Bulldogs have shut out the visitors the past two years, and will try to give Maxfield a win in his head coaching debut at Bulldog stadium. 

CCHS is aiming for a return trip to the playoffs for the first time in a dozen years. The Dawgs recorded a 7-3 regular season last year, and traveled to South Pittsburg for the team’s first trip to the playoffs in five seasons. 

Clay County topped Taft 30-0 last year, despite allowing almost as many yards as they gained. The key to the 2008 win was a very balanced rushing attack that pounded out over 270 yards, and an opportunistic defense that ripped away six turnovers.

Among those takeaways were three fumble recoveries and three interceptions, as Taft went to the air early and often in the contest. The visitors attempted 28 passes in the game, and wound up with 182 passing yards.

Taking advantage of the turnovers, the Bulldogs responded with a multi-headed rushing attack that controlled the tempo of the game. No Dawg rusher had more than 60 yards in the 276-yard effort. 

The year before, CCHS used 154 rushing yards and a pair of scores from Trey Richardson and a clamp-down defensive effort to win 15-0. Taft wound up with only 46 yards of total offense, as the Dawg defense held them to negative yardage until very late in the game. 

The Bulldogs will have an open date on Aug. 28 before traveling to Monterey for a crucial region game the following week.