Patriots look to go 2-0

Published 3:00 am Thursday, August 24, 2017

The Pike Patriots have had to face soaring temperatures and a rare astronomical event this week in order to prepare for their week two matchup Friday night.

The Patriots began the year 1-0 after defeating Kingwood Christian last week. They will host Clarke Prep on Friday night.

“It’s been good,” said head coach Gene Allen. “The heat has been the worst thing. The eclipse wasn’t too big of a deal. We let them out early and brought them back. Tuesday it was hot and that affected us more than anything.”

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The offense was on full display in last week’s win over the Lions. They scored in all six of their first half possessions and punted just once. The offense finished with over 700 yards of total offense in the win.

“I thought we played pretty well considering it was our first game,” Allen said. “We did a really good job of protecting the ball. We didn’t have any turnovers. I thought we were in good shape. We didn’t get tired and that was a plus for us. There were a lot of positives.”

On the defensive side of the ball the Patriots allowed 102 yards.

“I thought we tackled for the most part and we got to the ball on defense,” Allen said. “That was good for us. We made some mistakes and we need to make sure we get them corrected.”

This week the Patriots go up against a Gator team that will be playing in their first game of the season.

“We got word that they were going to be more of a spread team this year,” Allen said. “Coach (Billy) Hamilton has been running the Wing-T the last 30 years. Last week in the jamboree, they went spread. We are going to have to prepare for both of them. We feel like they are going to stay in the spread.”

The Patriots and the Gators have split their two all-time meetings with the Patriots winning last year 16-9.”

Friday night will close out a two-game home stand. After the contest the Patriots will hit the road for four out of their next five games.

“It’s big to be able to perform well at home,” Allen said. “Playing in front of the home crowd gets the kids excited. Playing at home and correcting mistakes is very important.”

Kickoff between the Gators and the Patriots is scheduled for 7 p.m.