No.1 River Valley hosts LWHS

Volunteers' 'A-game' must show up for win over powerhouse

Lee Williams High School defensive coordinator Joe Juelfs talks things over with his players during practice. The Volunteers take on the No.-1 ranked River Valley Dust Devils Friday at Mohave Valley.

Lee Williams High School defensive coordinator Joe Juelfs talks things over with his players during practice. The Volunteers take on the No.-1 ranked River Valley Dust Devils Friday at Mohave Valley.

KINGMAN - There's really not much Lee Williams High School can do to prepare for Friday night's game against River Valley in Mohave Valley.

The Dust Devils of River Valley are the No. 1-ranked team in Division IV, No. 27 in the state and have outscored opponents 98-13 in their first two games of the season, including a 68-7 shellacking of Kingman.

They're stacked with seniors such as 5-7, 186-pound running back Brandon Long, who averages 164 yards a game and has scored five touchdowns. Quarterback Brady Viles (6-0, 190) throws for 50 yards a game.

On defense, linebacker Jacob Lee (6-0, 175) has 11 tackles a game and noseguard Lance Phillips (5-7, 236) gets two sacks a game.

Lee Williams, in just its second year of varsity football, is off to a 2-0 start with impressive wins over Parker and Holbrook, though weaknesses were exposed in the Volunteers' pass defense and offense.

The Volunteers will have to bring their A-game against River Valley.

"You prepare yourself first," Lee Williams coach Eugene Kramer said after practice Wednesday. "We've got to get better each week as our own team, then you prepare for the other people."

Getting better means executing on offense. The entire team had to drop for 10 pushups each time a lineman blew the snap on three consecutive plays in practice.

"We'll be the pushup kings of the world," offensive coordinator Ray Smith told his players. "Maybe not the smartest group, but the strongest."

The coach worked with quarterback Braxton Burgess on moving his feet and setting up better on his throws. Burgess was 2-for-8 for minus-7 yards and an interception against Holbrook.

Smith told fullback Marcus Tate he's going to have to pick up the linebacker coming up the middle. "And he will be coming," Smith said.

Lee Williams has excelled against stopping the run with a swarming defense led by linebackers Dallas Morgan and Kael Juelfs, linemen Jerry Jones and Kaleb Smith and defensive back Russell Cottrell.

Morgan has been the horse on offense, carrying the ball for 118 yards against Parker and 85 yards against Holbrook. Jason Ruiz ran for 63 yards and two touchdowns last week.