By JOEL McNEECE
The Vardaman Rams improved to 3-1 on the season with a 28-3 win at Coldwater last Friday night.
The Rams used a strong ground game, that racked up 209 yards, to control the game. The Ram defense limited Coldwater to only 98 total yards.
“We really played well at the line of scrimmage,” Vardaman Coach Justin Hollis said. “I liked the way we ran the ball, but we didn’t throw it very well. We’ve got to improve on that as we go forward.”
Vardaman QB Austin Spann completed only three of 14 passes for 36 yards and three interceptions.
“I think the week off combined with having so many people out sick the past two weeks really contributed to that,” Coach Hollis said. “Our timing just seemed to be off.”
What wasn’t off was senior running back Willie Lee. The Rams’ leading rusher on the season continued his stellar play with 149 yards on 23 carries.
Sophomore Lavoris Hatchett contributed 35 yards on two carries, including a touchdown.
The Rams were also opportunistic on defense. Arsenio Lee and Octavious McKinney both recorded interceptions. Sophomore lineman Austin Tallent also recorded a touchdown when he recovered a Coldwater fumble in the end zone.
The Rams will now enter the more critical part of the schedule as region play begins with an old, familiar rival – Smithville.
The Seminoles enter the game with a perfect 4-0 record after a narrow win over Hamilton to start the season, then a blowout victory over Mantachie and back-to-back shutouts against Hatley and Wheeler.
“This is a big division game,” Coach Hollis said. “It will be a big test. We’ve been looking forward to going down there and playing.”
The Rams and Seminoles have both been ranked in the top five in most Class 1A polls thus far this season. The Clarion Ledger has Smithville fifth and Vardaman sixth in their latest poll.
“There’s a lot on the line this week,” Coach Hollis said. “This is a big game in the region. I think we’ll be ready for it.”