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Leaning on defense

Andalusia’s Derrick King rushed for 118 yards on 20 carries last week against Carroll-Ozark. The Bulldogs will use their running attack this week against Alabama Christian Academy, and will rely on their defense. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

There’s no doubt about it, Andalusia coach Brian Seymore said tonight’s region contest at home against Alabama Christian Academy will be a defensive game.

Last week, the Bulldogs (1-0) blitzed Carroll-Ozark with a 35-12 win on the ground, where senior running back Derrick King contributed by rushing 118 yards on 20 carries and scored two touchdowns.

This week, Seymore said he will stick to a “running” attack on his offense, and will rely more on the defensive front tonight.

“I think we’ve just got to go out there and improve on the mistakes we made last time,” he said. “On defense, we had a few missed assignments, and we had some missed tackles. I think we addressed those things (at practice), and I think we have a good defensive plan.”

The Bulldogs will face an ACA team with a stellar running back in Myles Mays, who is 5’10” and 235 pounds.

“He’s a concern because he’s a big physical back,” Seymore said. “They try to get the ball to him. He’s a bruiser, and we’re going to have to do a good job of gang-tackling him. He can definitely hurt us if he gets some space.”

As far as ACA’s passing game, Seymore said they run a spread offense, that will find a way to get the ball in the hands of Danny Madison.

“(Madison) kind of a smaller more of a quick player,” he said. “He plays more in the slot.”

One last threat for the Bulldogs’ defense this week is Tony Derico, who can make plays down field, Seymore said.

On defense, Seymore said he has confidence in his players.

“Our kids are going to carry it out,” he said. “We’ve got to be very, very sound when it comes to tackling.

“We’ll have to make some checks at the defensive line, and change the coverage a little bit and make sure everybody’s doing a good job of communicating well with each other,” he said. “They will give you a lot of different looks as far as the spread offense, and be a little bit more complex when it comes to it than Carroll was.

“Defensively, I think our kids are prepared, and I think they’ll stick to the plan installed,” he said.

In addition to running the ball, Andalusia will use its passing attack as well.

Seymore said the home crowd will see more passing in tonight’s game than in the previous two games.

“We’ll try to run the ball down field, and give the ball to a guy that can make plays,” he said. “We’ll throw the ball here and there, and we’ve got to work the play action a little bit more and throw the ball down field because we’ve got some good matches outside.

“The conditions played a lot in the game last week because it was wet and we were trying to keep the ball on the ground,” he said. “We’ll definitely keep doing what we’re doing, and hopefully the defensive front will lead the way.”

On getting the first region win this week, Seymore said it will dictate how the region race will end up at the end of the season.

“It think it’s huge,” Seymore said. “I think this first region game will set the tone for the whole year. If you get to 1-0, then that’ll help you build confidence going into the next region game. If you get down 0-1, then you’re kind of in a corner, and you’ll have to fight your way out.

“We definitely want to start on a positive note, and keep going and get the momentum going and keep it up,” he said. “It’s just that I want to play good fundemantal team football. If we do that, then I’ll think we’ll be fine.”

Kickoff is at 7 p.m.