The Lonoke Jackrabbits ended the 2012 season on a high note, finishing 6-5 after starting the season 3-4.
One of those late-season wins was over eventual Class 4A state champion Stuttgart 28-7 in Week 9.
Lonoke opens the 2013 season Friday night at Star City. A year ago, the Bulldogs won 44-35 in a highly-competitive game at James B. Abraham Stadium.
This will be the fourth consecutive season the two teams have opened the year against each other. Lonoke won three years ago before the Bulldogs won the next two.
"We were able to go watch them scrimmage last Tuesday [August 27]," Lonoke coach Doug Bost said of Star City. "We used that week to start going over some stuff for them. We practiced on Labor Day for 2 1/2 hours. We had another one Tuesday. Today [Wednesday], we’ll cut back with it being a church night."
Bost said the Bulldogs use multiple formations on offense.
"We’re working on that to get into the right defensive spots and practicing what we think they will run against us on defense," he said. "It’s been going good."
Bost said the games with Star City can be looked at as a rivalry.
"We’ve had some close ones," he said. "Last year, we had two special teams miscues [that cost the Jackrabbits]. We were right there with them. We just had a few breakdowns on special teams."
Lonoke scrimmaged Maumelle and Little Rock Fair last week at Maumelle. Bost said his team is ready for a real game.
"We’re ready," he said. "We had some mistakes against Maumelle that we saw on film and felt like we’ve got that corrected. We’ve had two weeks to work on some of those mistakes.
"It’s the start of the 2013 season. The kids are excited. They are going down to play a good football team."
Lonoke senior lineman Bubba Lewis, who missed the second half of the 2012 season after tearing a knee ligament against Heber Springs, re-injured it against Maumelle, Bost said.
"He has an MRI today [Wednesday]," Bost said. "He’s supposed to know the results Thursday. He’s definitely questionable for Friday.
"Other than than, health-wise, I think we’re good."
Sophomore running back Josh Coleman did not play in the scrimmage last week because of a shoulder injury.
"He’s been practicing this week," Bost said. "We hope to have him at full speed Friday night."
Friday’s game kicks off at 7 p.m.
The Lonoke Junior Jackrabbits travel to Beebe tonight to play the Junior Badgers at Bro. Erwin Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.