LAKE VIEW, S.C. (WMBF) - In Lake View, winning is expected. The Wild Gators have ten state titles in the trophy case and are one win away from bringing back another ring to Dillon County.
“It’s big for the community. They expect you to be playing this time of the year and they expect you to be playing in December,” said Lake View head coach Daryl King.
“In Lake View it’s all about football, it’s tradition,” Lake View running back Ja’Correus Ford said. “I don’t believe we would’ve gotten all the rings if it wasn’t for the community of Lake View.”
The Gators had a tall task to get to this point for the first time in four years. Senior Adarrian Dawkins came up big in the fourth against Bamberg-Ehrhardt with a pair of scores.
“It was good, I’m proud of my offensive line for stepping up in the fourth quarter,” said Lake View running back Adarrian Dawkins. “They came up big. They executed, they picked up their blocks like they were supposed to and we just got the win.”
Now Daryl King and company must take down yet another juggernaut in Southside Christian. The undefeated Sabres will look to counter Lake View’s strong ground game with a stout defense. Southside Christian has 50 tackles for a loss this season and has proven to be stingy with 16 interceptions on the year.
“They’re in position to make plays,” King said of the Sabres. “They read well on defense. they read their keys. The outside linebacker is tremendous at getting back in the box and making plays.”
Southside’s offense is just as dangerous led by quarterback Jacorey Martin, over 1800 yards of offense and 30 scores on the season for him. The Gators are excited for yet another challenge.
“On the offensive side, their quarterback is pretty good and very fast,” Lake View linebacker Marquise Johnson said of the Sabres. “Their receivers go get it. On defense they rally to the ball so we’re looking for a good hard game.”
This senior laden bunch is looking forward to strapping up for one final time this season as they aim to join the ranks of the great teams that have come through Lake View.
“We talk to them [Members of 2016 team] everyday so they tell us about how it is and what we have to do to get the job done because the job is not finished,” Ford said.
“If we’re here that means we did something right,” added Dawkins. “So, we just have to continue to stay safe and ball hard.”
“None of these kids have been here,” King said of his team. “A couple of guys asked yesterday how many of you all were there in 2016? Two of them were my ball boys. They got to experience it just running balls in and out, now they get to experience the whole thing playing for a state championship.”
Kickoff between the Wild Gators and Sabres is set for 11:30 a.m on Saturday at Benedict College in Columbia.