Preparation is key for rivalry

Published 12:02 am Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Andalusia and Straughn have had to have long practices ahead of Hurricane Isaac. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

To prepare for a game of this magnitude between two communities waiting to claw and scrape at each other, football teams tend to start early, even before the start of the regular season.

For Straughn’s football team, the Tigers started to think about the game on Sunday afternoon, head coach Trent Taylor said.

AHS head coach Brian Seymore said the team has been talking about the game throughout the summer.

Taylor said to prepare for the Bulldogs, the Tigers have looked at a lot of “fronts.”

‘”We really have tried to look at several different fronts (on offense),” Taylor said. “The same is true defensively. The fact of the matter is that Marcus Taylor was the offensive coordinator last year (at AHS). There’s that unknown.

“The preparation started Sunday afternoon for all of those reasons,” he said. “Most specifically, we were doing something differently offensively and we knew they were doing something different offensively.”

“You can come up with all of the new wrinkles and formations you want to,” Seymore said. ”Bottom line, there are no tricks to this game and when you turn the lights on, you’ve got to play four quarters. The team that will do the better job will win.”

On the health of their players, Andalusia is battling the injury bug, notably Derrick Dorsey, Montel Lee and Javonte Johnson sporting ailments that might cause them to limit playing time.

And while injuries could impair the Bulldog team, Seymore said they have a back up plan just for these reasons and fans need not worry.

For SHS, the Tigers are fit, healthy and ready to go as of Tuesday, Taylor said.

Taylor went on to say that no matter the game’s outcome, the team must focus on getting ready for next week, which starts region play.

This week at practice, both teams put in extra-long sessions on the field to stay ahead of Hurricane Isaac.