El Dorado News

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October 23, 2017
El Dorado News Times
Terrance Armstard/News-Times Junction City takes the field prior to taking on Fouke last week at David Carpenter Stadium. On Friday night, the Dragons will look to stay undefeated by playing at Lake Village. The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

Terrance Armstard/News-Times Junction City takes the field prior to taking on Fouke last week at David Carpenter Stadium. On Friday night, the Dragons will look to stay undefeated by playing at Lake Village. The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

Junction City not looking past Lake Village

This article was published October 12, 2017 at 5:00 a.m.

By Jason Avery

News-Times Staff

With showdowns against Smackover and Fordyce looming on the horizon, the last thing Junction City can ill afford to do is look past an opponent, particularly one that has a quarterback that ranks as one of the top dual threats in the 6-3A.

On Friday night, the Dragons will look to stay undefeated when they play at Lake Village in a 6-3A contest.

Game time is set for 7 p.m.

The Dragons (6-0, 3-0) have been on a roll all season long, scoring 50 points in five of their six outings, while the Beavers (2-4, 1-2) have lost four of their last five games.

However, the Beavers fell just short at home against Smackover two weeks ago, and Junction City coach Steven Jones had plenty of praise for Beavers junior quarterback Aarion Kilgore.

“They have a very talented quarterback,” Jones said. “He is a very explosive player that we will have to key on and stop. If he breaks contain, he’s very dangerous. He does a good job a lot of times of making something out of nothing. He’s just a very good player.”

The Dragons are familiar with seeing dual threats at quarterback having gone against Bearden quarterback Tyler Berry in their season opener, and Jones said Kilgore compares favorably to Berry.

“I think he’s a lot like the Berry kid in the fact that he can just make plays when really nothing is there developing,” Jones said. “He can extend the play. I saw him on film just flip the whole field around. He got flushed out of the pocket and scored, so he can go the distance anytime. I think he is the most versatile quarterback that we’ve faced this year. He’s not a great drop-back passer, but whenever he gets outside the pocket, he’s very dangerous.”

Kilgore has been tough for opposing defenses to stop, averaging nearly 10 yards per carry while posting four games of 100-plus yards on the ground, including 245 yards and four touchdowns in a win over Drew Central.

Kilgore has also thrown for 715 yards and six touchdowns, but has completed just 34 percent of his passes with seven interceptions.

At Fordyce last week, Kilgore showed how dangerous he can be with his feet, rushing for 175 yards and three scores on just 14 carries, but passing was another matter, as the junior was just 4-of-18 for 107 yards and three interceptions.

With Kilgore’s ability to make big plays, Jones has made it a focal point to keep his team’s focus strictly on the Beavers.

“We tell our guys every week not to look forward and not look ahead and just focus on what we have in front of us,” Jones said.

“We have a good test on the road with a very athletic Lake Village team that can beat you if you go over there not prepared.

“Athletically, they’re as good as anybody we’ve faced. I think the quarterback really gives them the boost in that with how he can do a lot of different things. I think that coupled with a running back and a receiver that are pretty good playmakers, they stack up with anybody we’ve faced athletically.

“Just looking at those guys on tape, they’ve made play after play throughout the season to keep in them in ballgames, and I think our guys have seen enough tape to know that Lake Village is very capable of making plays, so the focus from our kids so far this week has been very good.”

Over the past few weeks, Junction City’s passing game has continued to evolve.

In the last two weeks, quarterbacks Shuvasceiaye Frazier and Brady Hutcheson have combined to go 17-of-27 for 334 yards and six touchdowns with no interceptions.

“It’s gotten better in the last couple of weeks,” Jones said. “Just being able to get our quarterback outside the pocket where he has the option to run or throw, it’s been good for us, so we’ll look to continue to do that.”

In last week’s win over Fouke, nine receivers caught at least one pass, and Jones credited his quarterbacks for their decision making.

“We have a couple of weapons on offense that we try to get the ball to as much as possible, and when you do that, that opens up some throwing lanes for some other guys to step up,” Jones said.

“We had a number of guys catch a pass last week. Our quarterback is doing a job of seeing that space and getting the ball where it needs to be. That’s really why we’re able to get the ball to so many different guys.”

If the Dragons are to remain undefeated, Jones said it will come down to staying focused on Lake Village.

“We’ve got to have a lot of focus,” Jones said. “Anytime you go on the road, you’ve got be focused and be ready to play because you’re not in an environment that you’re used to. You have to do things differently when you travel. We have to maintain focus if we want to go over there and win.”

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