Reed says Natchez High must improve

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 15, 2008

NATCHEZ — Natchez High did pick up a 35-14 win over Wilkinson County on Friday, but coach Lance Reed knows his Bulldogs must improve as they hit the tough part of their schedule.

“We definitely have to improve our executing of a game plan,” Reed said. “We have to do a better job of doing what we worked on all week on Friday night.”

One problem the Bulldogs (2-0) had was stopping the run. Wilkinson County rushed for 244 yards and two scores on the ground in Friday’s game.

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And with Franklin County’s powerful running game looming next week, Reed knows that is something that will have to be improved.

“We got away from some of our basics like tackling and getting off blocks defensively,” Reed said. “We’re going to have to play sound football (against Franklin County). They’re a very athletic team, physical and well-coached. We’ve got to come back and play a lot better than we played last week to have a chance at them.”

Another team that remained undefeated on the year was Cathedral, which improved its record to 3-0 after defeating Pelahatchie 35-26.

Once again, the running game was the key for the Green Wave, who rushed 44 times for 173 yards against the Chiefs.

“Our ground game was working well and we stayed with it,” Cathedral coach Craig Beesley said. “We were getting seven or eight yards per carry on the ground.”

Beesley said the offensive line, which had four senior starters, is the key to the running game.

“Our offensive line did a great job,” Beesley said. “They are determined to run the ball. They get a little momentum going and it seems to build their confidence.”

Beesley said it is great the Green Wave are 3-0 but the tough part of the schedule is just beginning.

“We’ve got a tough road ahead of us,” Beesley said. “There’s a tough one this week (against St. Aloysius) and then the next four games are against teams that made the playoffs last year. It’s good to have a 3-0 start but we’ve still got a long way to go to make the playoffs, which is what our goal is.”

One of the featured matchups this week is the Vidalia Vikings at their rival Ferriday Trojans.

Both teams are coming off losses Friday, with the Vikings losing 40-14 to Ouachita Christian and Ferriday dropping a 12-6 decision to Block.

Vidalia head coach Dee Faircloth said that his defense needs to improve as the Vikings head into their rivalry game.

“We have got to find some head hunters,” Faircloth said. “You can’t play defense without head hunters.”

Ferriday is also looking to get back on track after its shocking loss to Block.

“We didn’t execute and did not perform at the level we need to perform at,” coach Freddie Harrison said. “We’ve got a big rivalry (this week) with the Vidalia Vikings coming in here. Hopefully we can rebound and get this thing turned around.”

Other area public school games this week are Jefferson County at Amite County, Jena at Block and South Pike at Wilkinson County.