MPSA Week 11: Rebels, Saints on road in final regular season bouts
Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 31, 2004
NATCHEZ &045; Don’t ask the coaching staff at Adams Christian for a Band-aid.
Chances are they’re all out.
The injuries just keep piling up for a team that continues to find a way to get through it every week. Three players are limited in practice this week heading into the team’s final regular season game Friday night at Brookhaven Academy before getting into the playoffs Nov. 5 at Centreville.
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You’d think after a couple of players went down things would have dried up, but the Rebels have found a way to keep it going and can head into the playoffs with the first winning record in school history since 1989.
&uot;One of the reasons I coach is this &045; there’s a lot of adversity in life, and they’ve certainly had their share of it this year,&uot; AC head coach Keith Walters said. &uot;This is my 25th year, and I’ve never seen anything like it. Some of it has been football related, and some of it hasn’t. I want to brag on them &045; they’ve done well for just hanging in there.
&uot;It’s been a real frustrating year for all of us, but I’m real proud of them. It shows a lot about their character.&uot;
But the injury list keeps growing, although the shoulder injury to Heath Williams improved by game time and he was able to play on at least one side of the ball in the win over Riverfield.
But Lee Dellinger went out with a knee injury in the second quarter, and the Rebels pulled David Alton New off the line and moved him to the backfield along with Brock Vines and Williams running the ball.
Patrick Womack is still nursing a sore shoulder, and Williams and Dellinger will have limited practice this week.
&uot;Brock had a couple of touchdowns,&uot; Walters said. &uot;Our offensive line, we had a lot of guys moved around up there. For the most part, they really got off the ball hard in the second half. It was a good win for us on the road against a pretty good team. We didn’t play well at all the first half but came out and did better the second half.&uot;
The competition gets a little better this week with Brookhaven Academy, a team that may be one of the best teams in Class AA sitting at home next week. The Rebels played them in the jamboree back in mid-August and split two sessions with the Cougars, winning 20-7 and losing 6-0.
The Cougars with speedy Price Sessums at quarterback played both Centreville and Oak Forest tough before bowing out of the playoff picture with a 48-34 loss to the Tigers. They lost to the OFA 31-20 after leading at the start of the fourth quarter.
&uot;(Sessums) is explosive, and he’s just a sophomore,&uot; Walters said. &uot;They’ve got a lot of really good skill people. They’ve got his brother, Stewart, but they’ve got several other good ones. It’s a real challenge for us. They’re real sound everywhere.&uot;
Trinity Episcopal at Central Hinds
NATCHEZ &045; The senior group at Trinity Episcopal (2-4, 5-5) won’t go out in the playoffs, so the Saints’ coaching staff is trying to do the next-best thing.
A win Friday at Raymond will lock up a winning season for a club that many considered a pipe dream back at the start of the season.
&uot;I want so bad for these seniors to go out with a winning record,&uot; Trinity head coach David King said. &uot;They’ve given us everything they could possibly give. I love this group and the attitude they brought to practice every day. We knew it was going to be a tough year.&uot;
The Saints had a chance last week to clinch that winning season but came up a point short when a two-point conversion with no time left on the clock was no good, allowing Brookhaven to take a 33-32 win.
But in the final game of the regular season the Saints get to visit District 3-AA champion Central Hinds Friday. Central Hinds went through the district undefeated and downed Adams Christian to win the title outright, and it will host Oak Forest to start the playoffs next week.
&uot;We looked at the schedule back in January and saw how the non-conference was,&uot; King said. &uot;Of the (five) non-conference games, Tri-County, Central Hinds and ACCS are all in the playoffs. Our schedule was tough as anybody’s in double-A, and we managed to win five games and could get out with six.&uot;
Central Private at Centreville
CENTREVILLE &045; The Tigers will get their final regular season game in on Thursday to prepare for the playoffs next week against Adams Christian.
For the Tigers, this may be a rare case of a good opportunity to finish the regular season with a non-district game. They come into the game fresh off that huge win at Oak Forest, and the game against Central Private allows room if there is any letdown.
The Rebels (2-7) enter the game losers of four straight and haven’t won since a 42-6 win over Silliman Sept. 17.