Building momentum: CHHS looks to stay on track against Rehobeth
Published 3:00 am Thursday, October 16, 2014
By Dan Smith
Every coach with a dog in the fight is concerned when – and if – their team will peak.
For Charles Henderson High School, momentum, progress and confidence are getting stronger every week, including this Friday’s Class 5A, Region 2 matchup at home against Rehobeth.
The Trojans enter the game with a four-game winning streak, 5-2 overall and 3-1 in Region 2 play, while Rehobeth is 5-3 overall and 2-2 in the region.
CHHS Head Coach Brad McCoy believes things are falling into place at the right time.
“I really think our whole mindset has been trying to improve as a football team, each and every practice and each and every Friday night,” McCoy said. “It’s been interesting because we give a Player of the Week award each and every Sunday, and it definitely has been a different guy every week. Usually what has happened is it has been a distinct player that has stood out.
“Austin Ingram, for example – Thursday night against Eufaula – I think had the best game this season for him. He just came out, very poised, very comfortable and threw the ball extremely well. In saying that, the reason is because of the offensive line played so well.
“On the flip side of that, our defense is improving and getting better. I think we are flying to the football better.
“We are tackling a little bit better and going after the ball with a sense of urgency more than we have been. Again, if any coach would say when do you want to start peaking, it’s now, with games seven, eight and nine to play.”
Rehobeth has wins over Slocomb, Alabama Christian, Sidney Lanier, Headland and Daleville this season, while falling to Ashford, Eufaula and Booker T. Washington last week 12-0.
“When you looked at Rehobeth at the beginning of the year, they came out of the blocks on fire, playing extremely well,” McCoy said. “The last couple of weeks, they did not quite seem to have the sense of urgency they have had. Rehobeth is kind of hard to tell what we are going to get, but they are very capable.
“They have a really good quarterback that throws the ball extremely well, the running backs run hard, their defense is really physical and fundamental.”
“They do not do a lot of things wrong. Yet they are coming off a letdown. I think we are going to get a very good, hungry Rehobeth team that still has a shot at the playoffs.”
McCoy also agrees that the Trojans control their own future with two remaining region games.
“With all things being said, if nothing changes, we control the outcome,” McCoy said. “If we win Friday night and win the next region game against Booker T. Washington, then we will play at home in the first round. From our standpoint of motivation, that’s big.”
In the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA), the top two teams qualify for the playoffs, and the top two teams in Region 2 will host the first round of the playoffs.
“We’ve got what we want right here in our hands, but if we come out and we are not ready to play, it can all change in one ballgame,” said McCoy.
“We’ve got to come out and play at a high level, and make sure we keep what we’ve got, and the opportunity is there, if we do our job.”
McCoy is also pleased with the focus and confidence he sees in his team at this point.
“The attitude is good and the confidence is high, but you’ve got to be careful about being too confident and too comfortable,” McCoy said. “If this makes sense, we want to make our team uncomfortable.”
“We want them to try to have the same focus as we had going into the game against Eufaula. Again, I thought that was our best week we’ve had.
“But you’ve got to be careful. If you do not come out with the same mindset, you are setting yourself up for a letdown.”
“We have seen that a couple of times. We’ve got to be uncomfortable and feel like anything can happen.
“We’ve got to take care of our business and play at the same level we played at last Thursday night and the last three weeks. That’s what we are hoping to accomplish this Friday night.”
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Friday
The game will be played in Troy’s Veterans Memorial Stadium.