• 55°

Tigers, Eagles kick off 2002 season tonight

Football season kicks off tonight when the Straughn Tigers host the Pleasant Home Eagles. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

The game is the season-opener for both teams and the first high school football game to be played in Covington County since the end of the 2001 season.

Straughn Head Coach Trent Taylor said the Tigers can't wait for the opening kickoff.

"Obviously, we're glad for it to get here," Taylor said. "You always feel like you need more time to get ready, but we need to play."

While the coaches and players are ready to face an opponent other than the themselves in practice, Taylor admits that the game against the Eagles has him staying up late at night.

"Pleasant Home scares me to death," Taylor said. "The whole reason they started football was for this senior class. This is their whole deal."

Pleasant Home Head Coach Anthony Clark has been juggling his line-up on an almost daily basis due to injuries.

Josh McCraney and Brad Sanders are both out due to injuries.

McCraney has a possible ligament tear in his elbow and Sanders has what Clark described as either a "deep thigh bruise or contusion."

The injuries to the two quarterbacks has flanker Daniel Clark getting ready to start the season as the Eagles' signal caller.

"We moved D.C. (Daniel Clark) from flanker to quarterback last Friday and he will start at quarterback on Thursday," Coach Clark said.

Taylor is a little worried about how well his team will perform in the first game.

"Right now, execution is the biggest key for us," he said. "I think every coach you could talk to would say, 'It's time to play.' Are we ready, I don't know."

Pleasant Home's head coach, however, is more concerned about how the Eagles will match up against the Tigers.

"I'm a little worried about us physically because we haven't done a lot of hitting in practice because of injuries," Clark said.

Clark said injuries will have four or five players sidelined for the season-opener, but they will have plenty who will be able to take the field.

"We are going to have some people who can play Thursday," Clark said. "We're not making any excuses."