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Road doesn't get easier for Wildcats

Richmond Hill plays host to Wayne County on Friday

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POSTED: October 6, 2011 9:35 p.m.

Last week, it was Liberty County High School running back Shadrach Thornton.

This week, Richmond Hill High School's defense will again face one of the South's top high school prospects when the unbeaten Wildcats (5-0, 1-0) play host to Wayne County and quarterback Greyson Lambert.

Lambert, a 6-foot-5, 200 pound senior, has committed to Virginia but was recruited by several top football schools, including Georgia. He's considered by some experts to be among the top 25 pro-style quarterback prospects in the country.
Richmond Hill coach Lyman Guy has seen Lambert up close --- before coming to RHHS, Guy spent a season as an assistant at Wayne County under former Yellow Jackets coach Mark Daniel.

"One of the things that makes Greyson so tough to defend is that he has a high release point and he gets rid of the ball quick, so it's hard to get pressure on him," Guy said. "He's also such a tall kid, so he's able to see the entire field. He's also a good kid, he works hard and he's a great competitor."

But Lambert isn't the only weapon for the Yellow Jackets, who are 2-2-1 overall but 1-0 in Region 2A-AAAA after a 21-17 win over Glynn Academy last week. Senior running back Lorenzo Larry (5-8, 170) is a speedster who's reportedly been timed at .4.37 in the 40, according to various web sources. Larry ran for nearly 200 yards on Aug. 26 in a 28-28 tie with Windsor Forest.

"They (Larry and Lambert) complement each other well," Guy said. "Larry has legitimate 4.4 speed and he's a very strong kid. I coached him too, and he was had impressive numbers and speed then. I think he's probably gotten better since then."
Senior wide receiver Jalen Simmons (5-11, 175) and sophomore receiver Krenwick Height (6-3, 185) are among a number of targets for Lambert.

Defensively, the Yellow Jackets are physical, Guy said, and have been tough against the run. That could prove problematic for the Wildcats, who have rushed for 1,619 yards so far this season while passing for only 247.
"I'd like to think we can pass the ball, too, but we can't change what we've been successful at doing at this point," Guy said. "The biggest things for us are the same each week. We've got to take care of the ball and hopefully keep our opponent off the field, avoid giving up big plays on defense and hopefully our special teams will help us out a little bit and flip the field for us."

Junior quarterback Dominique Allen leads Richmond Hill's ground attack, with 385 yards and four touchdowns on 65 carries. Speedster Alex Cruz has 378 yards and four touchdowns on 20 carries - an average of 19 yards every time he touches the ball - and T.J. Franklin, David Katzman and Aaron Dixon have 287, 278 and 229 yards rushing, respectively, and a touchdown each.

When the Wildcats do throw, receiver Hank Ferendo has been the top target with three catches for 92 yards and a touchdown. Franklin has four catches for 90 yards and three touchdowns while Cruz has two catches for 54 yards and a TD. Allen has completed five of 10 passes for 231 yards and five touchdowns. He hasn't been intercepted yet this season.
Richmond Hill's offensive line got some bad news and good news this week. The team's lost senior Lawton Chancey for a few weeks due to injury, but both sophomore Logan Rooker and senior Connor Bloomer, who had given up football due to concussions, are expected to return.

"We'll miss Lawton, but fortunately (Bloomer and Rooker) will be back. They're both very good linemen and they can really help us down the road," said Guy, who earlier noted that the offensive line has been key to the Wildcats success this season.

Meanwhile, linebackers Connor Beeson and Trevor Thomas lead a Wildcats defense that is giving up only 11 points per game. Beeson has 38.5 tackles and an interception while Thomas has 22.5 tackles.

Guy expects another solid crowd as the hype surrounding the Wildcats surprising start continues.
"When you hear the crowd and the band and the cheerleaders out there, it's a big deal to our players. Their part in all this is often overlooked and we do appreciate it," he said. "But we're trying to keep ourselves in check. We're trying to stay hungry and stay focused. I believe we've been blessed by having kids with the ability not to get too high or too low, and that's been a key to it."

 

 

 

 

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