Stackley expects hungry Berkeley squad in opener

  • Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Stratford's defense converges on a James Island player during last week's Sertoma. ROPER-PHOTOGRAPHY.COM

The basis for Ray Stackley’s argument that Berkeley is better than people think traces back to Friday’s Sertoma Classic.
The Stags lost competitively to Lowcountry power Goose Creek, 34-20, showing much more resistance than they did in a 61-0 loss to the Gators 10 days earlier in a scrimmage.
He said the Knights must be prepared for a four-quarter battle with Berkeley.
“Anything can happen in the first game,” Stackley said. “We’re certainly not taking them lightly... they went down the field and scored three touchdowns against a really good Goose Creek team. This is a team they’ve been pointing to for three years. They’ve got some older guys that have paid their dues and are hungry.
“I know they would like nothing more than to come here and whip us on our own field.”
The Knights lead the all-time series 19-10 going back to 1984 after last season’s 21-0 victory, and have won 12 of the last 15 meetings. Berkeley last won, 40-14, in 2010.
Last fall, linebacker Cecil Smith made 13 tackles to help Stratford blank Berkeley for the second straight year. Quarterback Jacob Park threw for 240-plus yards and two scores.
Park is coming off a phenomenal showing in Sertoma. The Georgia commitment was 5 for 5 for 271 yards over the two-quarter scrimmage and tossed three touchdowns in a 27-0 rout of James Island.
“Jacob has improved tremendously as a leader,” Stackley said. “He understands this is his football team more than he ever has even though he’s been the captain of our ship for four years.”
Stratford travels to Sumter and Fort Dorchester over the next two weeks, while Berkeley hosts Summerville and Cane Bay.
For more information on both teams, please see our annual football edition inside this edition.

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