The Notebook: Tacklers wanted for Green Wave

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 2, 2006

Football season kicked off throughout the Miss-Lou over the weekend, and the Cathedral Green Wave were the first ones to hit the field Thursday night.

Unfortunately, their opener at St. Aloysius did not go as planned in a 12-7 loss.

One of the biggest reasons for the loss was a huge size advantage for the Flashes, as the Green Wave were either pushed around at the line or failed to make the tackle when it was available.

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&8220;I think part of our problem was we didn&8217;t do as good a job at tackling,&8221; said Cathedral head coach Ken Beesley Sr. &8220;We were in a position to make a lot of plays where we didn&8217;t. We were either trying to arm tackle or we&8217;d hit the back and he&8217;d still get five or six more yards while we were bringing him down.&8221;

St. Al rushed for 301 yards over the course of the game.

While there are things Cathedral can do to fix the tackling problem, there is little they can do to fix their size disadvantage.

&8220;I don&8217;t know what game we&8217;re going to find ourselves in where we match up size-wise,&8221; Beesley said. &8220;It&8217;s a matter of us making sure we&8217;re in good shape and hope we&8217;re in better shape than the team we&8217;re playing. We&8217;ve got to take advantage of the breaks we get. We had the opportunity to win the game and messed it up.&8221;

Natchez backs carrying load

Natchez High&8217;s knockout success in its 70-0 season-opening win over Port Gibson was led by the play of its backs.

Quarterback Jason Bruce passed for 164 yards and four touchdowns &8212; but also rushed four times for 46 yards and three more scores. Latarus Frazer carried the ball only four times but rushed for 158 yards and a score, and Andre Hayward, Willie Newman and Derrick McGee all averaged at least eight yards per carry.

Bulldog head coach Lance Reed said he had been pleased with the team-oriented nature of his running backs.

&8220;Surprisingly, (I haven&8217;t had problems with them wanting carries),&8221; Reed said. &8220;If I was told that we&8217;d have a group like this two years ago I would&8217;ve thought there&8217;d be some selfishness. They&8217;re working together to make each other better. They understand what we can become.&8221;

When asked if things would be as easy this week at Vicksburg, Reed had only one thing to say.

&8220;I hope so.&8221;

Saints looking for focus

Trinity&8217;s 52-19 win at Newton County Academy Friday night featured plenty of fireworks, but it also featured a brief scare as Newton took an early 7-0 lead.

Saints head coach David King said he blamed himself for the slow start.

&8220;A lot of it was my fault,&8221; King said. &8220;I&8217;ve always had a philosophy that it&8217;s hard to get a team up for 10 games a year, so we kind of pick and choose what games we really motivate them for. We mostly went over fundamentals this week, and I think we were strong there. Mentally, we weren&8217;t as strong and I take the blame for that.&8221;

King said focus wouldn&8217;t be an issue this weekend when Class AA&8217;s second-ranked team, Copiah Academy, rolls into Natchez. Copiah knocked Trinity out of last year&8217;s AA playoffs.