Week 4 started out like any other game week for the Raiders. The coaches showed up at the field house to game plan Sunday night. The next day, the Raiders went out for a full-contact practice.
That Tuesday, Pleasant Valley was informed Victory Christian was forfeiting Friday’s game because of a lack of players. The win improved Pleasant Valley to 1-3, including 1-2 in Class 2A, Region 6.
According to head coach Jeff Davis, the Raiders used that week to “focus on us” and “recoup a couple of players.”
“We had one with a messed-up ankle that we needed to get back desperately,” Davis said. “It gave him a chance to get well. We had a kid with a concussion and it gave him a chance to get well. We had a kid with another injury from earlier in the year that hasn’t got to play. We got him back.”
Davis said the Raiders recouped by toning down the physicality in practice. They took a break from game planning and returned to fundamental football and worked on perfecting their schemes.
“We didn’t go in pads a day,” he said. “We were in helmets and shorts. We took Wednesday off and came back and had a good 2 1/2-hour practice on Thursday. We took Friday off because the kids were out of school. We’ve probably had two of the better practices that we’ve had all season”
Added senior offensive tackle Austin Parris: “We got to take a chance to heal up,”
There may not have been a game or a practice that Friday, but the coaches and players all had the same thing in mind.
“We watched a lot of other teams play,” said junior running back Dalton Bean
Davis and his coaches spread out.
“We went to three different games. We got a chance to see our region opponents play in person,” he said.
The Raiders will have to wait another week for a shot at another Region 6 opponent. Pleasant Valley takes on White Plains at home this week. Some of the Raiders have been preparing for the Wildcats since Friday.
“We got to see White Plains play,” Davis said. “White Plains and us is always a big game. It’s something our kids get up for and something their kids get up for. It’s always a big game. We’re looking forward to it.”