Delta Charter has rollercoaster start
FERRIDAY — Through the first three weeks of the 2018 high school football season, the Delta Charter School Storm has indeed been on quite a roller coaster ride.
First there was a blowout loss at Homer High School. Then there was a less-than-one-quarter win at Lincoln Preparatory School. Last week was a tough 40-26 loss to LHSAA Class 2A General Trass in the Storm’s home opener.
“I was real pleased with our effort. We played pretty well offensively and defensively. There were a few errors that turned the tide of the game. They got a few timely bounces and we didn’t,” Storm head coach Blake Wheeler said. “We need to improve our blocking up front. We missed a few tackles here and there. Overall, I feel like we’re going in the right direction. I’m excited about our team.”
This Friday at 7 p.m., Delta Charter will without a double face its toughest opponent to date when it hosts the Oak Grove High School Tigers in the District 2-1A opener for both teams.
And while Delta Charter is currently 1-2 overall, Oak Grove is 3-0 overall and ranked No. 6 in the latest LSWA Class 1A poll after upsetting then-undefeated, Class 3A No. 2, and rival Sterlington High School 20-14.
Which could have some suggesting that the Tigers may be in for a letdown and ripe for an upset loss themselves. However, Wheeler doesn’t see it that way.
“I would love to say so, but (head) coach (Ryan) Gregory always has his team ready. If they’re No. 6 in Class 1A, I’d like to know which five teams are ahead of them,” Wheeler said.
“They’re real big up front, offensively and defensively. They tackle well defensively. It’s going to be a challenge for us,” Money said. “I don’t want to take anything away from coach Gregory and his crew. We’re looking forward to playing them Friday night.”
But those are not the only things about Oak Grove that concern Wheeler.
“They have a quarterback who’s a real game-breaker. They run the option. Containing the big plays. Make them earn everything they get. They can go the distance on any give play,” Wheeler said. “They have some good defensive players, one of which made the All-State team last year.”
However, a win by the Storm over a highly-ranked team such as the Tigers could very well help it be one of the top teams in the district. The Storm will also be seeking to avenge last year’s 49-8 loss on the road to the Tigers.
Wheeler said several standout players will have to step up for Delta Charter to pull off the upset of Oak Grove.
“Freddie Mango is really going to have to have a big game. So will Trey Poole. Kavarius Whitehead in the passing game. Defensively, Jacob Hawkins and Mike Smith. Cole Beard on the defensive line,” Wheeler said.
Then he added, “We’re going to have to have a big collective effort. We can’t have turnovers and costly penalties. We’re going to have to be all in to win this fight Friday night.”