Ferriday’s young team still growing up

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 25, 2008

Ferriday — Ferriday coach Freddie Harrison was disappointed that his Trojans didn’t get a win in their rivalry game against Vidalia on Friday.

He said mistakes were the only thing holding them back from the victory.

But Harrison also sees a silver lining to the loss.

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“I think more or less our opportunity to win was there. What happened was we are still trying to grow up as a team,” he said. “You’re going to have growing pains, but there’s always good things, too. When we finally do grow up, ooh, boy. Watch out!”

The growing pains are those of a primarily 15- and 16-year-old team. The Trojans sport 18 sophomores while just eight seniors and five juniors are on the roster.

Add to that eight freshmen, and Ferriday has a lot of room to grow.

So it is easy to see why Harrison would not stress too much about a couple losses — he expects the next few years for the 1-2 team to be dynamite.

Besides, Harrison said, the main mistakes in the losses — to Block and Vidalia — were just ball control miscues.

“It was mental lapses. That’s been our downfall in these last two games that we lost,” he said. “We had eight combined turnovers in those two games, and the opposing team had zero turnovers. We’re making mistakes, and the other teams not making any.”

Harrison said he saw bright spots in both of those losses, mostly on the offensive side of the ball against Vidalia.

“The offensive line stepped up and took the challenge. They definitely came to play,” he said. “We ran the ball real well and threw it well, so I thought we were real balanced. We had 400 yards of total offense. Anytime you get that kind of production on offense you’re supposed to win football games.”

The Trojans travel to Jena, La., on Friday to take on the Giants, a game Harrison said will be tough despite Jena’s 1-1 record.

Bernie Cooley’s District 2-3A Giants took a loss to Iowa before beating block by one point this past week.

“Eric Bowens is the man,” he said of Jena’s best running back. “300-plus yards in one game and another 200-plus yard game. He’s averaging 250 yards a game — what more can you ask for from a running back?”

Harrison said the Giants are well balanced on offense, both running and throwing well. He said they’re defense is big up front, another huge test for his young offensive line.

“We’ll see if our offensive line can step up to the challenge. We have three sophomores, a freshman and one senior on o-line. It goes to show you our team is really rebuilding and growing up. The future is looking bright.”