Bradley: “We’re using emotions in a positive way”

Published 8:01 pm Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Quarterback Joe Bradley won’t break any records this year. His team hasn’t received a vote in any of the high school rankings or garnered any state-wide recognition but none of that matters. The only thing on the minds of the Trojans is their next opponent.

As it happens, the next opponent is one they’ve been looking forward to for some time.

“This is the one we really wanted,” Bradley said. “Not that the others aren’t important but after last year, we have looked forward to this game.”

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Last year, Eufaula handed Charles Henderson a 43-21 defeat. It is a loss that has stuck with them.

“We couldn’t blame anyone but ourselves,” said Bradley of the 2010 game. “This is a big game for us.”

Big game indeed.

The Trojans currently sit 5-1 in region play, tied with Eufaula for the second seed in Region 2. A win Friday night would not only be sweet retribution for last year’s result but secure a first round home playoff game for Charles Henderson.

“Obviously, this game carries a lot of significance,” head coach Hugh Fountain said. “We know this game mean a lot as for as the standings go.”

Charles Henderson, at 5-3 overall, has overcome misfortunes both on and off the field this season.

The deaths of both offensive lineman Ronnell Moore and defensive coordinator Tyrone Black has taken an emotional toll on a team which has also dealt with on-the-field shortcomings.

The Trojans three losses have come by a combined eleven points and to teams that have a combined record of 22-2.

“This team has faced a lot of adversity,” Fountain said. “There in no comparison to life and death in football.”

Fountain said he wanted to be sure his team understood exactly what they are playing for.

“It is a great burden for a kid to play a football game for someone else,” he said. “I told them to play to the best of their abilities each week like Ronnell and Coach Black would have wanted and no matter the result that would make them proud.”

On the field, the Trojans matchup nicely against a team very similar to their own.

“We do a lot of the same things,” Fountain said. “Both teams are going to have to win the battle up front t be successful.”

Bradley echoed his coach.

“I think we match up well,” the quarterback said. “Up front is where we have to be solid.”

Bradley also feels his this team has grown from all the adversity it has faced tis season.

“I think now we are getting out of the shock and the overall emotion (of Black’s death) and starting to use those emotions in a positive way.”

Charles Henderson will host Eufaula Friday in the team’s final home game of the season.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.