ECHS travels to Faith Academy Friday

Published 11:46 pm Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Coming off the school’s first shutout since 1993, the Escambia County Blue Devils step out of region play this week and back into their old region in Class 5A to take on the Faith Academy Rams in Mobile Friday.

The Blue Devils (3-1, 2-1) crushed the W.S. Neal Blue Eagles last Friday holding an opponent scoreless for the first time in 172 games.

This week, Atmore’s team looks to pick up their first road win of the season against the Rams (2-2, 0-2) who are looking to get their winning percentage past .500.

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Blue Devils head coach Mark Heaton said Faith has several good athletes that need to be stopped in order for the Blue Devils to be successful.

“Faith has a lot of good skill players, so we need to keep them in check,” Heaton said. “I feel if we can hold them to a couple of touchdowns then we have a good chance to win this game.”

From a defensive standpoint, the Blue Devils will look to dominate the line of scrimmage the same way they did against W.S. Neal.

Heaton said he wants his defense focused on getting the big play to get the offense back on the field.

“Defensively, we are just trying to focus on shutouts and doing what we need to do early in the game,” Heaton said. “Against W.S. Neal, we played with a lot of intensity, so we need to come out with that tenacity again.”

The Blue Devils defense will be focused this week on stopping an offense that does several different things.

Heaton said the Rams have a lot of formations, and added they also throw the ball more than other teams.

“They are very multiple in what they do,” Heaton said. “They run a lot of different formations and sets, and they throw the ball more than anyone we’ve played this season, so our secondary will be tested. We also need to get a good pass rush on their quarterback, and I think our defensive line is really coming along now.”

Despite scoring 60 points in their last game, the coaching staff still thinks work needs to be done.

Heaton said the offense needs to get more success early on in their games.

“Offensively, we need to move the chains better early on,” Heaton said. “If you can’t get the ball moving early then it sets you back for a couple of series and you can’t get a good tempo. We just need to find more success early to get things moving better.”

The Blue Devils and Rams kick off at 7 p.m. Friday in Mobile.

Senior quarterback Rico Stallworth and the Escambia County Blue Devils travel to Mobile Friday to take on the Faith Academy Rams.|Photo by Adam Prestridge