Blue Devils playing for pride at Jackson

Published 4:06 pm Thursday, October 13, 2005

By By Tim Cottrell
Earlier this year a new head coach and a partly new coaching staff were brought in to Escambia County High School to bring the football team back to prominence.
While there have been flashes of brilliance this season, year one of the Kyle Davis era has not gone as many hoped, with the Blue Devils basically eliminated from the playoff picture with two games still remaining on the schedule.
The Blue Devils will hit the road for those final two games on the schedule, and the first of those games Friday night will present ECHS with an opportunity to play spoiler.
The Blue Devils will travel to Jackson Friday night to take on the Jackson Aggies. Davis said the Aggies were on a roll and would be difficult to stop.
"They really have executed well (during their five-game winning streak)," Davis said. "They run a Wing T, and that's an offense that if you execute it well you can score a lot of points with. It's a misdirection offense that people have a lot of trouble with. But they've won five in a row. Winning is contagious."
Davis said he hoped to see a fighting spirit from his team in the final two games of the season.
"We're just looking for them to not give up," Davis said. "I feel like Friday we gave up a little. When Calvin (Hartley) went down (with a hand injury which as of press time had not been diagnosed) the team seemed to kind of fade. He's the leader, and they took out our leader and we didn't respond. In some aspects of the game I felt we gave up. We're going to prepare for the worst (with Hartley's injury) and hope for the best. But we just want to get better than we were. We're looking to see them play hard. I don't know if we've done that all year except for maybe three times. But when you take 80 percent of your offense out of the picture it's going to be tough."
Davis said he expected the biggest challenge his team would face this week would be a potent Aggie rushing attack.
"I'm most concerned about the running game," Davis said. "Can we stop the run? It's killed us all year. They've won five in a row and they'd love to make it six. We're going to have to find a way to stop their ground game to be sure that doesn't happen."
Davis also said the Blue Devil fans could expect to see a few new faces on the field as the game progresses.
"You're going to see some younger players out there," Davis said. "They're going to get to play, but we're not going to crush the season. We want to see what some of our kids who will be playing next year can do because some of the upperclassmen haven't been getting the job done."
The Blue Devils will face the Aggies Friday night at 7 p.m. in Jackson.

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