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Trinity gets set to defend home turf

NATCHEZ — Trinity Episcopal dropped its first two games last season, so head coach Josh Loy has to be liking his team’s start this fall.

The Saints are currently 2-0 after a big 44-18 win against Centreville Academy Friday night, and Loy said he was pleased with his team’s mental preparation before the game.

“I thought we played very well,” Loy said. “We jumped out early and did a lot of good things we can build on. We talk a lot about starting fast and finishing strong, and this is one where we can show the kids that, if you do it the right way and the way we’re telling you, you’ll have good results.”

Up next for Trinity is Central Private School out of Baker, La. Though some teams might be prone to a letdown after a big win, Loy said he doesn’t expect that from his players, given that it’s a home game.

“We lost three games on our home turf last year, and that’s embarrassing to me personally and to these seniors,” he said. “We’re not going to let that happen. We take a lot of pride in defending (our home field), and we’ll be ready to play Friday night.”

Central Private (0-2) is fielding a younger team this season, Loy said, but he expects the Rebels to give his Saints all they can handle, he added.

“They’re down in numbers from what they usually are,” Loy said. “I think they’re around 27 or 28, and they’re usually in the mid-30s. But we have a target on our backs, and we know we’ll get everyone’s best shot, especially after last week. We’re expecting them to come in and give us a great ball game.”

Quarterback Michael Whitley is someone who had a great ball game for the Saints against Centreville, throwing for 167 yards and four touchdowns and running for 74 yards and a touchdown. Loy said he’s been pleased with the progress Whitley has shown since taking over the starting quarterback job.

“He’s been outstanding,” Loy said. “He keeps improving from our scrimmage four weeks ago to last week. He’s really taking the coaching well, doing what we’re asking him to do and making good decisions. His best ball is ahead of him — he’s only going to get better as the season goes on.”

Loy said the important thing for his team Friday is continuing to cut down on penalties and turnovers.

“We went from two turnovers to one last week, and I’d like to not turn it over at all,” Loy said. “We cut down on penalties last week, but we still had too many. It’s about time in the season to clean those up.”

Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. Friday.