Ferriday looks to keep momentum going Friday at Madison Prep

Published 10:45 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Perhaps to some, Ferriday High School’s deep run through the LHSAA Class 2A playoffs comes as a shock.

But to Trojans coach Dwight Woods, his squad’s postseason run comes as no surprise.

Tenth-ranked Ferriday (10-3) topped Northeast 44-24 in the LHSAA Class 2A opening round Nov. 11, then followed it up with a road win last week over No. 7 Loreauville, 32-18.

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The Trojans will attempt to keep their winning ways going at 7 p.m. Friday night at No. 2 Madison Prep Academy.

“We finally started to get healthy,” Woods said. “Last week was the first week that we had all of our starters. We’re still not fully healthy; we still have injuries, but we’re able to play with them now and get everyone on the field.”

Ferriday will take a five-game winning streak into Friday’s quarterfinals tilt. The Trojans have won eight of their past nine games, making them one of the hottest teams in the state.

In its past three games, the Ferriday offense appears to be hitting its stride, totaling 118 points during that span.

Woods, who is in his second year at the helm, said his team’s ability to be well-rounded has proven to be a key to their success, and it “gives us an opportunity to beat just about anybody out there.”

Senior wide receiver Carlos Collins said he thinks a Nov. 4 42-32 win over district rival Ouachita Christian was the turning point of his team’s season. The win gave the Trojans a share of the district championship and gave Ouachita Christian its first loss of the season.

“We have a lot of momentum right now,” he said. “It’s just carried on week by week. We are right where we need to be. We just need to keep doing what we’ve been doing.”

Collins said from watching game tape of Madison Prep, he thinks there will be opportunities to be made in the passing game.

“We just have to do what (Coach) Woods is telling us to do,” he said. “Just run our offense and do our thing.”

Perhaps one of the few teams that can match Ferriday’s recent streak is Madison Prep. The Chargers (13-0) have defeated Delcambre and Mangham high schools by a combined 118-0.

Woods said Mangham coach Thomas Tharp called Madison Prep the most athletic team he’s ever seen.

“They’re putting their athletes to use,” Woods said. “Coming from (Tharp), that’s a big deal. They’re huge, really athletic and quick. It’s probably the team to beat in 2A.”

Madison Prep has recorded five shutouts this season and are anchored by a pair of high-profiled lineman in seniors Troy James and Bryan Jones.

James, a University of Arkansas commit, stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 275 pounds. Jones, meanwhile, is a 6-foot-5, 240-pound prospect that recently de-committed from Ole Miss.

“We’re going to run some stuff at (Jones) and force him to be disciplined,” Woods said. “We’re going to force him to make smart decisions. One of the things he’s been able to do is just play and not have to make decisions and choices. We’re going to put him on the defensive.”

Woods said Madison Prep has been using its size to its advantage all season long and has been “bullying people around,” and the Ferriday head man said he thinks his squad will be more than up to the challenge.

“I don’t think they’re going to have that same mental effect on us that they’ve had on other teams,” he said. “I think we’ll be OK.”