Meridian Star


October 24, 2013

Area football previews: West Lauderdale hopes to clinch playoff bid

SCOOBA — Houston at West Lauderdale

    The West Lauderdale football team failed in the toughest test of its new district last week being shutout by Noxubee County, 35-0. This week, the Knights are looking to rebound against Houston and have hopes of solidifying a playoff berth with a third district win.

    “They made us look really bad to be honest,” West head coach Stan McCain said. “Our guys have put that behind us and were just focused on this week.”

    The Hilltroppers are coming into the match up at 1-8, but McCain said “they are probably the best 1-8 team in the state,” so it won't be a guaranteed win.

    “They are really good on defense,” he said. “They don't allow many points. You really have to work hard to get the ball in the end zone against them and they've played a lot of close games that they just haven't won.”

    The Knights offense is slightly banged up, meaning they'll have their work cut out for them McCain said, and especially needs to eliminate turnovers.

    Running back and defensive back Jonathan Williams is out with an ankle injury sustained last week and Tyler Turnage is still not available at quarterback. McCain will rely on his two go-tos in Tyler Lantz and Larry Ross,  each took some hard tackles last week so naming a starter will wait for game time.


Central Academy at Calvary Christian

    Before the acquisition of three key transfers midway through the season, Calvary Christian Academy was lost on offense. Now, after three straight performances of 60 or more points, head coach Kirby Newell believes the Cougars have found their way.

    The new bulked-up Cougars are now averaging 9.6 yards a carry as a steady offensive line has paved the way for running backs to run wild.

    "The first five games of the year we didn't have an identity," Newell said. "We know who we are now, and we know our identity."

    This week, Calvary (4-4, 2-0) will host Central Academy (1-6, 1-3). While the Vikings schedule is not intimidating, Newell said Central will look to use its speed to get past the larger Cougars.

    “People have been trying to beat us outside this year,” Newell said. “We are going to have to contain them, keep the ball inside and win the turnover battle.”

    With an undefeated record in the district, Calvary will look to not only hold on for a playoff spot, but also lock up a district title by winning its final two games.

    “That is our No. 1 goal,” Newell said. “We haven't had anything in the past four years to get excited about. A district championship would give us something to build on.”

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