Goshen’s consistent improvement guides them into playoffs

Published 9:11 pm Thursday, November 8, 2012

All football coaches preach to the team on trying to get better every week. But it seems that the kids at Goshen High School take those words to heart.

After starting the season 1-5, Goshen has won four straight games to enter the playoffs as the four seed in Region 3. Last year’s Eagle team rebounded from a week one loss to G.W. Long to knock off the very same Rebels in the first round of the Alabama High School Athletic Association playoffs.

Goshen’s magical run down the stretch got them in the playoffs, but the four seed does not present a favorable matchup in week one. The Eagles will square off with the Oakman Wildcats, who are on a win streak of their own.

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“They are on a roll up there,” said Goshen head coach Bart Snyder. “You don’t win nine straight ball games with out having a lot of talent. They are playing good now, but so are we.”

Oakman enters the game on a nine-game win streak, and have not lost since a bizarre week one defeat at the hands of 33-24 to 1A Parrish.

The Wildcats have put up some impressive offensive numbers during the season. Oakman enters the playoffs average more than 37 points per game, and has scored 40 or more five times.

The Goshen defense is averaging giving up around 24 points a game in 2012, but the numbers have improved in the latter part of the season. In the Eagles’ win streak, they have averaged giving up just over 16 points an outing.

“They have really put up some points and numbers,” said Snyder of Oakman’s offense. “They run and through very well, and we will have to get some breaks to go our way and tackle well.”

On the season, Oakman quarterback Jase Trotter has completed 93 of 173 passes for 1,623 yards and 21 touchdowns against just six interceptions. Trotter has also picked up 562 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground. Quinton Harris has been his main receiving threat, hauling in 30 passes for 670 yards and nine scores. Elijah Farley has 28 catches for 465 yards and seven scores.

On the ground, running back Chase Austin topped the century mark last week and now has 1,030 yards and 10 touchdowns on 159 carries.

Snyder feels that his team has accomplished a lot already, but will keep fighting through the season.

“This team has endured a lot,” said Snyder. “We have lost some players, faced must-win games for weeks on end and they never quit. They have worked with each other and became very close.”

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. in Oakman.