Home sweet homePublished 9:25pm Tuesday, September 3, 2013
Two of the three local high school football teams will play at home this Friday. Escambia County hosts Clarke County, Escambia Academy welcomes Hooper Academy, and Northview travels to face Marianna.
Clarke County at Escambia County
The Escambia County High School Blue Devils’ football team opens region play Friday when they host Clarke County.
It will also be the home opener for the Blue Devils, who are coming off a 50-18 loss to cross-county rival T.R. Miller.
ECHS coach Lev Holly said his young team made too many mistakes against Miller, and would have to execute better in order to be successful against Clarke County.
“In the first four series (against Miller), we had two turnovers,” he said. “We put ourselves behind the 8-ball. We were driving every time, but we just put the ball on the ground.”
ECHS picked up 297 total yards with 123 yards on the ground and 167 through the air. Quarterback Chris Johnson led with 75 yards on 13 carries and Gaetyn Thames contributed with 11 carries for 64 yards and a touchdown against the Tigers.
Johnson finished with 174 yards on 16-for-28 passing and two touchdowns. Devante Williams led with six catches for 79 yards and a touchdown.
Holly said Clarke County was a great team that is “big and athletic.” He said the Blue Devils would have to work on fundamentals and stay in position to take on the Bulldogs, who play the wing-T offensive scheme.
“Fundamentals will be big for us to help stand our ground and hold our own,” he said. “It’s going to be a four-quarter game.”
Holly emphasized that this week is important.
“It’s going to be a great night,” he said. “We’re going to get a chance to play in front of the hometown fans.”
Clarke County hosted ECHS last year and shut out the Blue Devils, 19-0. Before last year, the two teams hadn’t met since 1966, according to the Alabama High School Football Historical Society website.
Clarke County went 6-5 last season, with a loss against Tallassee in the first round of the playoffs. ECHS finished 3-7 last season. Escambia County is 14-4-2 all time against Clarke County.
Hooper Academy at Escambia Academy
Escambia Academy opens at home against Hooper Academy on Friday at 7 p.m. in Canoe. The Cougars are coming off a heartbreaking 32-26 loss to Fort Dale Academy in Greenville.
EA is 1-3 all-time against Hooper Academy, losing 37-20 last season. The two teams played first in 1973, again in 1978, 1979 and 2012. The Cougars’ only win came in 1978 with a shutout victory.
EA will follow the home game up with a trip to Morgan Academy. The Cougars are 1-1 on the season.
Northview at Marianna
Northview High School survived a sloppy first quarter to beat the Bozeman Bucks, 34-14, in Bratt last week. The Chiefs travel to Class 5A Marianna on Friday in the first road test of 2013 for the defending Florida state Class 1A champions.