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2017 football season kicks off Thursday night

The long wait is finally over as football season kicks off tonight with three games on the schedule.

After injuries derailed Lawrence County in 2016, the Cougars are looking to rebound this season starting tonight with a home game against North Pike.

Bogue Chitto kicks off the KDMC Kickoff Classic tonight with a game against McLaurin at Copiah-Lincoln Community College.

Enterprise will look to bounce back tonight after a disappointing end in 2016 when they host 2A opponent Salem to begin the 2017 season.

Lawrence County vs. North Pike

Injuries to starting quarterback Charl’tez Nunnery and starting running back Quitten Brown set Lawrence County back last season and the team couldn’t fight back from it.

Not only does head coach Jaymie Palmer have to replace the two offensive weapons, but he’ll also have to replace Marcus Atterberry, AJ Mclaurin and 14 other seniors from last year.

The coaching staff knows that replacing those key leaders from last year will be a difficult task, but Palmer believes his young players will be ready to step up and lead the Cougars out on the field.

Junior offensive and defensive lineman Oliver Moreman is one of the leaders that Palmer expects to step up this season. On defense, Moreman racked up 42 total tackles, 12 for a loss, and four sacks. Moreman also anchors a strong offensive line.

Senior wide receiver Kendarius Feazell is the offensive weapon that Palmer is looking forward to watching the most. Feazell reeled in 10 catches for 190 yards and one touchdown last season.

North Pike is led by senior wide receiver Dylan Adams, who reeled in 45 catches last season for 1,025 yards and seven touchdowns.

The Jaguars will have to replace running back Bryceon Magee, who rushed for 1,202 yards and six touchdowns last season.

The North Pike defense returns a talented group with its five returning tacklers coming back.

North Pike will provide a great test for Lawrence County right out of the gate.

Bogue Chitto vs. McLaurin

The Bogue Chitto Bobcats get the KDMC Kickoff Classic started when they play the McLaurin Tigers at Co-Lin.

There’s nowhere to go but up for Bogue Chitto after a 0-11 season in 2016.

Led by two-way players Trey Nettles, Damarcus Godbolt and Lafredrick Dillon, the Bobcats have the leaders and experience to win some ballgames.

It’s hard to believe, but McLaurin had a worse season than Bogue Chitto in 2016 season. Not only did the Tigers go winless at 0-11, but also they were outscored 38-436 on the season and were shut out six times. The Tigers also fell to Wesson, Loyd Star and Enterprise.

A win to start the season could give Bogue Chitto early momentum and potentially jumpstart a turnaround 2017 season.

Enterprise vs. Salem

After a 3-2 start last season, the Enterprise Yellow Jackets dropped their final five games to fall to 3-7 and missed the playoffs.

The players are looking for redemption this season and are motivated as ever to build a winner.

Leading the Yellow Jackets on both sides of the ball is senior Tanner Waldrop. At running back, Waldrop rushed for 547 yards and five touchdowns and also caught two touchdowns. On defense, Waldrop had 37 total tackles.

Sophomore defensive end Tailor Young had a breakout 2016 season for the Yellow Jackets with 53 total tackles and a team high five sacks.

The Salem Bobcats had a rough 2016 season, going 1-9 overall with their only win coming against Bogue Chitto by a score of 32-6.

The team will replace their leading rusher and receiver Julius Faulk, who had over 1,000 all-purpose yards last year.

The Bobcats will return starting quarterback Camden Gilmore, but will replace three of their four leading tacklers from last season.

Enterprise gets a good opportunity to open up the season with a win and take momentum into the following week.