Topsail (2-3) vs. Laney (3-2)
Player to Watch: Cayman Czesak, linebacker, Laney: Coined by Coach Aashad Yeoman as the “The Heat Sinking Missle”, Czesak has headlined a Bucs’ defense allowing 15.4 points per game in five outings moving into conference play.
The senior linebacker has a team-high 20 tackles this season, with 15 solo tackles and one tackle for loss. His presence in the middle of a talented front seven on the Laney defense is noticeable each week with speed and athleticism from sideline to sideline. Coming off back-to-back wins, the Bucs have given up just 14 points in their last two games.
The Laney offense continues to grow under the direction of Sherod Sidbury. The sophomore quarterback accounted for three total touchdowns in last week’s impressive 31-7 home win over East Bladen. Imeek Watkins is the featured running back in the wing-tee option offense, while Sidbury and Austin Nalley play a pivotal role in the run game. Laney’s offense looked a lot more balanced in the victory against East Bladen, utilizing the air attack to make big plays down field.
Special teams have also played a big role in the Bucs recent success, with blocked punts in consecutive games. James Hoffman hit his first field goal attempt of the season last week to go along with a solid effort in the kicking game to help in the field position battle.
Topsail will have their hands full on both sides of the ball against a talented group from Buctown. The Pirates open league play coming off a pair of losses to Croatan and Jacksonville. Freshman Noah Lavalle has anchored Topsail’s run heavy offense with 90 rushes in four games played for 600 yards and seven touchdowns.
The Pirates need to limit turnovers and big plays if they hope to keep up with a Laney squad bringing a ton of confidence to Hampstead after a pair of impressive wins.