Vikings have good shot at championship

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 14, 1999

It was as good a game plan as you will find, and it came at the right time.

The final score was Vidalia 47, East Beauregard 14. But it could have been a lot worse.

Vidalia High head football coach Dee Faircloth and his assistant coaches knew East Beauregard was coming to Viking Stadium determined to put at least one set of pads on prized running back Dariel Mays on every play.

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So when Jarrett Hoffpauir dropped back to pass on Vidalia’s first play from scrimmage, there were a lot of stunned East Beauregard coaches and players going, &uot;Oh my!&uot;

Viking wide receiver Chris Kennedy flew by two Trojan defenders, and Hoffpauir lofted a perfect spiral into his hands for the first score of the game.

That would be the first of 21 passes Hoffpauir would throw, completing 13 for 233 yards.

With a big, physical East Beauregard front line and linebacking crew crowding the line, &uot;Air Faircloth&uot; went to the friendly skies.

Vidalia also came out in a five-receiver at one point.

A couple of the Viking statkeepers who used to play at Vidalia nearly dropped their clipboards.

But the Vikings didn’t just hurt the Trojans with the pass.

On one of Vidalia’s early possessions around midfield, Hoffpauir ran the option to the right with Mays trailing.

East Beauregard 6-foot-5 linebacker Beau Maggio, who will be playing tight end at Southern Mississippi for at least the next four years, went after Mays and drove him back to the Vidalia 10.

Meanwhile, Hoffpauir had kept the ball and picked up 25 yards.

Faircloth pointed to the two players and said to the head official, &uot;Look where he’s got my running back.&uot;

The official replied, &uot;I didn’t see it.&uot;

No kidding.

Friday’s contest was the seventh time this year the 10-1 Vikings could have named their score.

Faircloth even kicked a 32-yard field goal in the fourth quarter on first down to keep his team from going over 50.

The Vikings have scored an amazing 432 points this year, averaging 39.2 points a game.

Some of Faircloth’s better teams probably averaged no more than 20.

The great thing about that is that this team is just as good on defense.

If Vidalia stays healthy, the Vikings have a good chance of finishing among the elite.

Last year’s Vidalia team came on strong at the end, routing Delhi at home in the first round of the playoffs before losing a heartbreaker to South Cameron in the second round. That should be enough incentive right there.

Vidalia routed East Beauregard and now goes on to play a dangerous Christian Life team in Baton Rouge, La., Friday.

Things were even shaping up good for the future until Vermillion Catholic upset Springhill Friday.

Otherwise, guessing ahead, Newman would have had to come to Vidalia if both teams won out this week.

But because Newman now goes to Vermillion Catholic instead of hosting Springhill, Vidalia will likely be on the road again next week if they beat Christian Life.

Basically, the same cards are on the table this year that were there last year.

But the Vikings seem to have a better hand. And the dealer is the best in the state.

Joey Martin is sports editor of The Democrat. He can be reached by calling 446-5172 ext. 232 or at