Playoffs pit teams against foes again
Published 12:00 am Monday, November 19, 2007
NATCHEZ — The theme for the third week of the high school football playoffs is rematches.
Two of the three playoff games involving area teams consist of two teams that played in the regular season.
Trinity (13-0) and Centreville (11-2) will play at Trinity in the MPSA AA South State finals after meeting each other in the final week of the regular season.
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The Saints won that matchup 36-22, in a game that was also played at Trinity.
“Centreville is tough anytime you play them,” Trinity coach David King said. “We played as well as we could when we faced them in the regular season and now we’re going to have to reach back and play even better now that we’re meeting in the playoffs.”
While most people expected Centreville to be competing for yet another Class AA state championship at this point in the season, Trinity’s success is a bit of a surprise seeing they moved up from Class A this season and lost their best player in Stevan Ridley to graduation.
“To get up each and every week and come out with a win is a sign of great leadership on the team,” King said. “It is rare to go through your first 13 games of the season undefeated but we’re 0-0 now. We’ve got one game left to get back to where we want to be and that’s all that matters.”
King is expecting a tough game between the two proud programs when they tee it off on Friday night.
“It’s going to be a war anyway you look at it,” King said. “Centreville is so strong and physical, it doesn’t matter when you play them.”
Huntington is also facing an opponent they played in the regular season.
The Hounds (9-4) will travel for the third week in a row to take on Glenbrook (10-3) in the MPSA Class A South State championship game.
Both teams play in the same district and met in Huntington in the regular season. The Hounds led most of the game but Glenbrook got a late touchdown to take a 16-12 victory that allowed them to win the district and relegate Huntington to a second place finish.
The Hounds seem to be peaking at the right time, having won two consecutive road playoff games over Wayne (8-7) and Central Hinds (28-7).
“The kids have really played hard and come together,” Huntington coach Chad Harkins said. “They’ve come a long way since they lost to Glenbrook in the regular season. After we lost to them, they didn’t get down. They came together and played hard.”
Harkins said that his team appears to be playing its best football when it counts the most, which has allowed them to play well on the road.
“We’re peaking at the right time now,” Harkins said. “We’re a lot better team than we were earlier in the year. We’ve also played well on the road, which has allowed us to get some playoff wins.”
In public school playoff action, Franklin County will travel to take on the No. 1 team in MHSAA Class 3A in the Newton County Cougars.
Newton County brings an 11-1 record into the contest with their only loss being to MPSA Class AAA champion Jackson Prep. Franklin County’s record stands at 10-2. They have won six games in a row after dropping two games in the middle of the season.
The Bulldogs are the defending 3A champions.