Centreville faces tough test in quarterfinals

Published 2:38 am Tuesday, November 9, 2010

CENTREVILLE — The Centreville Academy Tigers are on a roll, having won eight of their last nine games.

But the Tigers will face one of their toughest tests of the year in River Oaks Friday night in the quarterfinals of the MAIS Class AA playoffs.

The Mustangs bring a 10-1 record into the game, with their only setback being a 42-21 loss to Trinity Episcopal midway through the season.

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Centreville also lost to Trinity, 24-13, and Tigers assistant coach Brian Stutzman said the two teams are quite similar when it comes to skill players.

“Besides Trinity, they have the most speed we will face this season,” Stutzman said. “We will have to try and contain their skill players.”

And the way to do that is to hit them before they can break loose.

“We’ve got to be able to make tackles and not let them get started running,” Stutzman said. “If we can bottle them up before they get going, we’ll be OK. But if we don’t and we let them get into the secondary, it’s going to be a long night.”

Centreville got off to an uncharacteristic 0-3 start to the season, but has righted the ship behind some young, improving players.

Their only loss since then was a 14-13 defeat to defending state champion Brookhaven Academy.

“We’re just playing with a lot of young players, and every week they get better,” Stutzman said. “We’ve only got three seniors, and none of them want it to be over with.”

Stutzman said a difference with this team and the teams of years past is the defense.

“I feel like we’re a little more aggressive defensively than we have been in the past,” Stutzman said. “That’s the main difference. Of couse, you can get burned that way, but they’ve done well for the most part.”