Homecoming week presents challlenges for local teams

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Homecoming week is full of dress up days, bonfires, student assemblies and apparently headaches for the coaching staff.

Three local schools, Charles Henderson, Goshen and Zion Chapel, host homecoming games this week. Charles Henderson High School head coach Mike Dean said that keeping the team motivated on the “task at hand” is hard to do during the week.

“I told the guys earlier in the week that homecoming is great for the students,” said Dean. “It is great for the band, cheerleaders and alumni, but we have to remember that we have a football game to play.”

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Goshen head coach Bart Snyder echoed Dean’s sentiments, and added that it is even tougher to keep concentration when the season isn’t going well.

“At this point being 1-5 and then homecoming week and keeping (the players) focusing and on the game of football and a region game is a pretty tough task to do,” said Snyder.

Dean said that the more structured the week is, the more focused the players will be.

Charles Henderson had a bonfire on Tuesday night, and pep rally on Wednesday. Dean said that Troy University Thursday night game versus Western Kentucky could be a blessing in disguise for his Trojans.

“We don’t have anything on Thursday, which helps,” said Dean. “We have an assembly on Friday, then I get them for about 3 hours before we start our pregame routine.”

Dean said that the team just hast to get used to the routine of the week, that varies from coach to coach.

“It’s just different than what they have been used to,” said Dean. “I’m big on routine, and the more we can keep the same one, the better off we will be.”

All of the games on Friday are region matchups, and all are pivotal if the teams want a shot at making the Alabama High School Athletic Association playoffs.

“We need to stay focused on Charles Henderson,” said Dean. “If we limit out mistakes and worry about us, and not Headland or Tallassee or whoever, we have the ability to make some noise in the playoffs.”

All three local homecoming matchups will kickoff at 7 p.m. Charles Henderson hosts Headland, Goshen welcomes in Central-Hayneville and Zion Chapel plays New Brockton.