A three-point loss to Salem ended the Pulaski Cougars’ season in the second round of the playoffs last year, with a final record of 6 and 6.

But as Coach Todd Jones embarks on his fourth season in Dublin, he knows it's time to turn the corner.

“We have quite a few guys back, some three-year starters, two-year starters. We have a lot of experience and have been in the playoffs, and we want to build on that and just keep getting better and better,” Jones said. “But we do have some guys that have stepped in and had to fill some roles in there and they're working hard right now.”

The Cougars’ schedule is a bit different this season.

Northside, Richlands, and Magna Vista are gone, in favor of Carroll County, Staunton River, and Franklin County. It's still a challenging slate starting with Christiansburg on Friday night.

“We're still playing the same type of teams and some of the teams that are in the district we've played before and the rivalry is there,” Jones said. “Just going out there and competing each and every week and it's still the same type of teams we played in the first place.”