Cowling, defense lead Pike County to Luverne

Published 3:00 am Friday, September 25, 2015

Messenger Photo/mike hensley The undefeated Pike County Bulldogs travel to Luverne to take on the 4-1 Tigers at 7 P.m. tonight.

Messenger Photo/mike hensley
The undefeated Pike County Bulldogs travel to Luverne to take on the 4-1 Tigers at 7 P.m. tonight.

The Pike County Bulldogs have rolled their way through the first half of season without surrendering a single point on defense, outscoring their opponents 169-0.

This week the Bulldogs put their shutout streak on the line when they travel to Luverne to play the Tigers tonight.

“We just tell everyone to do their job,” said Bulldogs running back and linebacker Deshon Cowling said. “If we do our job everything will be fine and they won’t be able to score on us.”

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The Bulldogs are coming off their bye week and the players are itching to get back into game mode.

“For a week the guys have pretty much beaten up on one another,” said Bulldogs coach Fred Holland. “The guys really like the games and look forward to the games. We have had physical practices the last few days and the guys are looking forward to getting back into game mode.”

This is only the Bulldogs second road game of the season.

“Hopefully it won’t be too bad. I know playing on the road is a lot different than playing at home, as far as preparations go. Playing at home gives you more of an opportunity to work on things; being on the road challenges you. Hopefully our guys do a good job at expecting those challenges,” Holland said.

The Bulldogs head into the game with their offense clicking on all cylinders. Quarterback Jerrell Lawson has added the deep ball to his arsenal, while Cowling continues to churn rushing yards into touchdowns. Cowling led the Bulldogs in rushing a week ago and scored five touchdowns.

Cowling’s bruising running style mixed with his shiftiness has given defenses headaches all season long.

“What motivates me is my lineman,” Cowling said. “They tell me that they have my back. I just trust in them to do their job and they trust me to do mine. Last year I was more of a run-someone-over type running back. This year I think I am more of a shifty runner. I like to mix it up for them and give both.”

The Tigers come into the game with a 4-0 record and perfect within their region at 3-0. They are currently tied in first with Elba in the 2A Region 3 standings.

“I think they have some older guys just like we do,” Holland said. “They have a real good quarterback that does a real good job on offense. They are big up front on both offense and defense. I think coach (Scott) Riles does a wonderful job at preparing his kids. He doesn’t try to do too much but he does a really good job at doing what they do. I have been telling our guys all week long that they are a good football team and we have our work cut out for us.”

An obstacle for the Bulldogs to avoid will be getting passed the fact that they are playing a school with a smaller classification.

“Luverne always gives us some good competition,” Cowling said. “Even though they are a 2A school, we lost to them two years ago and beat them by only one point last year. This year we hope to have a good game and come away with the victory.

The Bulldogs will put their shutout and unbeaten streak on the line when they kick things off with Luverne at 7 p.m. at Glenn Daniel Stadium.