PRC makes adjustments ahead of Long Beach bout

Published 7:00 am Thursday, September 21, 2017

CARRIERE — As the first half of the 2017 season comes to an end, Pearl River Central heads into district play seeking its first win of the season against a tough Long Beach team Friday.

Led by sophomore quarterback Cade Crosby, the Bearcats dominated its first three games this season, in which Crosby threw for over 600 yards, completed nearly 70 percent of his passes and had a 6 to 1 touchdown/interception ratio. After the trio of victories, Long Beach is now coming off its first loss of the season against Greene County.

Nevertheless, PRC Head Coach Larry Dolan said after the Blue Devils’ previous 35-0 loss to St. Stanislaus that the team needs to focus on one thing in order to get its first win.

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“We need to focus on ourselves,” he said. “This is a strong team and we know the competition is only going to get better as the season goes on, but if we improve upon our mistakes, we could be in good shape.”

The Blue Devils lost its starting running back Louis Reece last week after the senior fell, buckling his knee.

He was already recovering from an ACL tear that occurred in the offseason. There is no certainty of the severity of the injury, but Reece was seen coming out of last week’s halftime without any pads on.

“We were in a way going back to what we did last year and he was a big part of that plan. When he went down that just jumbled everything up, but this sport is unpredictable and you must learn to adapt if you want to be successful,” Dolan said.

Regardless of Reece’s injury, PRC has its hands full against a balanced Long Beach team.

The Blue Devils are accustomed to defending teams that lean on rushing, but Long Beach is a rare team in the Region 4-5A district that likes to throw the ball, a lot.

But PRC’s defense matches up against the Bearcats fairly well, with a pair of athletic Devils, Tristan Anderson and Willie Reece, in the secondary to help shut down Long Beach’s top receivers Charlie Wescovich and Kai Vancourt.

The game between Pearl River Central and Long Beach is scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m. in Carriere.