Delta Charter hosts Sicily Island in mirroring matchup

Published 12:10 am Friday, September 29, 2017

Heading into Week 5 for Delta Charter School and Sicily Island High School, the similarities are seemingly endless.

A first-year head coach leads each team, with just more than 20 players on each roster. Both teams have won two games this season, while each have dropped another two.

Most importantly, perhaps, each team is still looking for a district win this season. And tonight, just one team will get its wish.

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The Storm is set to host the LHSAA 2-1A matchup at 7 p.m.

“It seems like it is a rivalry,” Delta Charter coach Blake Wheeler said. “My guys are really looking forward to it. They have been kind of eyeballing this game for a little while now.”

To add the comparison, both Delta Charter and Sicily Island are fairly new programs.

The Storm became eligible for postseason play last season after the school was formed just five years ago, while the Tigers reinstated its varsity program in 2015.

“Ever since Delta Charter started up, it does always seem to be an interesting game,” Sicily Island coach Donald Money said. “I think the thing is, there are a lot of people who know each other including the players. A lot is good natured, but there is an undercurrent of rivalry. That kind of sparks everything.”

Money and Wheeler were even able to agree on one thing, noting how challenging it is to play in their district.

“This is a tough district,” Money said.

Wheeler added it can also be surprising.

“You think you know going in who the strong teams and weaker teams are going to be, but it really means nothing,” Wheeler said. “It’s all about who goes out there and performs. Any team can beat you on any given night.”

Last week, Delta Charter fell in its district opener to Oak Grove, 49-8.

Wheeler said in practice this week, the Storm has been sticking to what it knows best.

“It’s all about attitude and effort,” he said. “We just want to go out there and compete. We are hoping we have done enough this week to be able to put some points on the board. Sicily Island runs a lot of misdirection on offense. We have to be really disciplined on defense and stay true to our coverage.”

Sicily Island has taken a more narrow approach, Money said, after falling to Ouachita Christian last week, 54-28.

“There were some big big plays they got away with. The score could have been a lot closer,” he said. “We have been practicing with Delta Charter in mind. We may have to shift around some personnel on defense.”

If anything else, one thing is for sure. The game’s end result could go in any direction.

“It will be interesting,” Money said.