10/03/13 — Prep football: Saints, Golden Falcons eyeing all-important 3A win

View Archive

Prep football: Saints, Golden Falcons eyeing all-important 3A win

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on October 3, 2013 1:48 PM

Forget about the previous six weeks and those tough losses on the football field. This one matters the most ... so far.

Charles B. Aycock (3-3 overall) looks to snap a three-game skid and put a 65-point loss to Eastern Carolina 3-A/4-A Conference preseason favorite New Bern behind it.

Southern Wayne (2-3) is hungry for a win.

The victor in the 33rd installment of this county rivalry momentarily seizes the inside track for the league's automatic qualifying bid to the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A playoffs. The Saints lead the all-time series 21-10-1.

"We've explained to the kids it's their biggest game of their lives this week (and) all of the 3-A goals we have in front of them starts this week," CBA head coach Steve Brooks said. "It's the biggest game of my coaching career, too. We saw what a fast, physical team looks like (last week).

"I think the kids learned what it's going to take to get to that level ... lot of blood, sweat and tears. We couldn't have had more of a worse start and against great football teams, you can't have those starts."

Another bad start could prove detrimental against the Saints.

Southern Wayne's wing-T offense is built around the run. The grind-it-out scheme works best when the chains consistently move, long-yardage situations are avoided and time is taken off of the clock. If all of those factors take place, the opposing defense undoubtedly becomes fatigued.

The Golden Falcons' main objective is to limit yardage on first- and second-down plays, which hopefully will lead to several three-and-out series.

More possessions give Aycock better chances to benefit from its athleticism and find a rhythm on offense. Brooks' team averages 376 yards of total offense per outing and two players -- Neil Clark and TJ Morrow -- have accounted for more than 2,000 yards of the team's total offense this season.

"We know they are going to target two guys," Brooks said. "They have good size on defense. Their front (line) gets off the ball well, they're pretty physical and their linebackers, from what I've seen on film, they pursue to the football well. We are going to have our hands full.

"They have kept me awake a lot this week."

The Saints don't have flashy offensive numbers.

In fact, Southern Wayne averages around 210 yards of total offense in its basic misdirection package that requires opposing defenses to carry out blocking assignments on every down. Three backs -- Tyaire Allen, Marquis Baldwin and AJ Williams -- have each rushed for 200-plus yards this season. The trio has combined for 11 touchdowns.

Jacob Hollingsworth has attempted 38 passes and connected 15 times. His lone TD strike is to Allen.

"They are not going to formation you to death, but show you this is what we have and what are you going to do about it," Brooks said. "They're going to lull you to sleep with the run and then try to hit you with the play-action pass. We cannot go to sleep on our responsibilities.

"If we don't get off of our blocks, it's going to be a long night for us."