NHS, FHS round two

Published 7:22 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Chiefs head coach Sid Wheatley speaks to his team during a timeout last Friday.

With a round one victory over the Wewa Gators behind them, the Northview Chiefs will look to a familiar opponent for the second of the playoffs as the Freeport Bulldogs come to town Friday.

The Chiefs (7-3, 3-0) already own one victory over the Bulldogs this season as they defeated them 35-21 on Oct. 21 in district play.
With the Bulldogs coming to town again, the Chiefs will need to be ready for a tough fight, Northview head coach Sid Wheatley said.

“It is going to be a big game,” he said. “These guys are tough to beat. They play you about as hard as any opponent since I’ve been coaching here. They will fight tooth and nail, and I’m sure they will be looking for a little revenge after we beat them in the regular season game. I’m sure coach Anderson has those kids motivated.”

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The Chiefs will need to get their focus back quickly after a record-setting performance where they scored a school record 67 points against the Gators last week.

Getting that focus back will be the coaches main priority this week, especially after the Chiefs came in “flat” on Monday, Wheatley said.

“I thought we were flat Monday to be honest,” he said. “I don’t know if it was feeling good and coming off of a big win, but we need to come to work the rest of the week. We need to be prepared and mentally ready for Friday because Freeport will be.”

Currently, the Chiefs hold a two-game winning streak over the Bulldogs with the win during the regular season and a win during last season’s playoffs. The Chiefs also lost during the regular season last year to the Bulldogs proving how tough this game is.

The Chiefs have been able to pick up a lot from playing the Bulldogs with turnovers being a key role, Wheatley said.

“You learn a whole lot when you play them,” he said. “They will play hard and put them in a place to try and win this football game. We need to do a great job of holding onto the football. We need to create some things off of their turnovers.”

If the Chiefs want to put themselves in a position to win this game, stopping the Bulldogs offense will be an important factor.

Freeport is a team with several talented players lining up to play, Wheatley said.

“Their quarterback and tight end do a great job for them,” he said. “They have been around awhile and will be a key for us to stop. Their running back is also someone to watch because he hurt us some on the edge last time we played them.”

The Chiefs and Bulldogs will kick off at  7 p.m. on Friday night at Northview High School in Bratt, Fla.