Meridian Star

October 16, 2013

Enterprise, Clarkdale square off for bragging rights

Sarah Moomaw
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN — The surrounding area has many rivalries, but as region lines fall, few of the ones created by distance are also district rivalries like Enterprise and Clarkdale.

    The two schools are 10 miles apart and are named the Bulldogs. On Friday night, they'll meet on Clarkdale's gridiron for a year's worth of football bragging rights.

    "Geography created this rivalry," Enterprise coach Kelly Jimmerson said. "All of our kids know each other. It's a fun week from them. They get to talk to each other a little bit, talk a little trash. We've played each other a lot over the history of the two schools. We don't want to lose to Clarkdale and Clarkdale don't want to lose to us."

    The similarities continue, as both sides have struggled not only this season but in recent years. Clarkdale hasn't won a game in two years, and Enterprise's only victory this season is over Class 3A's Choctaw Central in Week 6.

    "We're a one win time, they have a good shot to come out and play hard," Jimmerson said. "If they do play hard, they are going to give us trouble."

    Last week, both picked up losses in the district to stand at 0-2 and ready to face off. By 10 p.m. Friday night, one will have a key win.

    As for getting there, Jimmerson said his Bulldogs will need to hold onto the ball to prevent a repeat of 2012.

    Last year, Enterprise had a chance to put the game out of reach, but a costly turnover made it a slim two-point margin of victory, 29-27.

    "It turned into a battle," Jimmerson said. "If we can get the opportunity this year, hopefully we won't turn it over and we can finish it early, but I'm sure they are saying the same thing."

    Despite the rivalry and being eager for the win he won't change the plan for this game.

"Any rivalry game, it means a little something," he said. "Your kids are going to practice hard and hopefully they are going to play harder. It makes it a little easier as coaches whenever you get the good effort out of your kids."

    Jimmerson said he is still going to rely on the run game as his offense has already rushed for 2152 yards this season. Cade Gibson leads the team with 775 yards, closely followed by Johntay Horton at 635.

    "We're more of a ground football team, I guess you'd say," Jimmerson said.

    Leading Enterprise's defensive effort are sophomores Jacob Gunn, Jacob Cunningham and Cole Stephens.

    "A lot of our guys, you're going to hear their names on both sides of the ball because we're a small school and got small numbers," Jimmerson said.

    On the other side of the Battle of the Bulldogs, Clarkdale is lead by Justin Goodwin with 602 rushing yards this season, with Austin Thomas behind him at 289. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Clarkdale.