NHS, Baker to meet in 1A semis

Published 5:02 pm Thursday, November 15, 2018

Football for Northview took a back seat over the weekend as one of its players woke up Saturday morning with cardiac issues and was rushed to a hospital in Mobile.

Chiefs head football coach Derek Marshman said Dariontae Richardson, a junior, woke up the day after NHS claimed a playoff victory over Graceville, with cardiac problems. The coach said Richardson passed out Saturday morning.

“He’s doing better right now,” Marshman said on Sunday. “It kind of put things in perspective right now. We’ve been going back and forth to Mobile.”

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Marshman added that the team, along with the community has surrounded Richardson with support.

“As big as the (Graceville) win was and as big as this week’s game (against Baker, Fla. in the regional semifinal) is coming up, those are taking a back seat,” he said. “You’re talking about a good young man, who’s always smiling and fighting for everything.”

With the recent news, Marshman said the team is still prepared to play against Baker this week in the FHSAA’s Class 1A regional semifinal.

“We as coaches sat down (Sunday) and asked what would Dariontae want us to do?” he said. “He would want us to go out and perform.”

The last time NHS played Baker was on Oct. 19. The Chiefs lost 35-7.

When asked how the team is different now than it was some three weeks ago, he said the boys are peaking right now.

“We’re playing or best football right now,” Marshman said. “I thought we played good, not well enough against Baker the first time. We didn’t finish well enough.

“Right now, you’re starting to see the confidence level in them,” he said. “They believe in what they’re doing. We’ve had three straight blow out victories, and all three are playoff teams. We’re just playing with a lot more confidence. These kids have a chip on their shoulders. They just want to keep proving people wrong.”

Marshman said the biggest key for the game is ball control.

“Last time we went over there, we didn’t control the ball,” he said. “We lost the turnover battle. You can’t beat a team like Baker if you don’t control the turnover battle.”

Marshman added that the players learned a lot from last week’s game as most were playing in their first postseason match up.

Kick off in Baker on Friday is at 7:30 p.m.