Natchez travels to play Port Gibson at Alcorn State

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 31, 2018

After last week’s thrilling win over Jefferson County, Natchez High School football coach Roy Rigsby said his team hasn’t done anything different to prepare for its next game.

The Bulldogs are set to take on Port Gibson at Alcorn State University at 7 p.m. tonight, and Rigsby said practice this week has been focused on just one thing.

“The first thing to address, and then the main concern is to correct our mistakes,” he said. “That was a great game. A lot of people were impressed with the fight our kids had, but we were fortunate to win that.”

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Natchez topped the Tigers last week with an effective two-minute offense that ended the game with a 21-yard winning touchdown pass to James Singleton from Paul Hargrave. Juan Boteo kicked the winning extra point for a 33-32 victory with just 21 second remaining in the game.

While happy with the outcome, Rigsby knew the game could have gone either way.

The Bulldogs fumbled three times in the win, losing all three — including two on punt returns. They also had more than 100 yards in penalties, most coming on holding calls, as well as a handful of offsides calls.

“Ball security is a factor in every game you play, Rigsby said. “You have to win the turnover battle and we didn’t. It just seemed like everything that could go wrong in that first half went wrong.

“We are trying to play as technical as possible to eliminate those penalties. Hand placement and foot placement has a lot to do with it.”

Rigsby said the Bulldogs have their hands full again this week with Port Gibson, noting their senior quarterback and Alcorn commit D’Marious Hicks can be dangerous.

“We have to work on open field tackling because we are aware of what they can do,” he said.

A new environment playing on a college field should present some excitement, as well, Rigsby said. Though, he said he wants to keep everything as normal as possible.

Port Gibson is currently renovating its field, causing the change of venue.

“It is exciting, and the kids are excited — especially the seniors,” Rigsby said. “It should be a great game.”