Practice Propels SHS

Published 12:02 am Thursday, September 11, 2014

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Straughn head football coach Trent Taylor said the players had a solid practice Tuesday afternoon. | File photo

Straughn regroups, gets ready for Headland this week

Monday was a good day for the Straughn Tigers.

Because of the rain that swept through the area, players and coaches had no choice but to spend some time in the film room.

What they were studying was last week’s film that showed Straughn’s 10-7 loss to St. James in Montgomery.

The Tigers led 7-3 going into the fourth quarter, but STJ scored a late touchdown to take the lead for good.

“We spent a long time in the film room,” SHS head football coach Trent Taylor said. “Certainly, we pointed out some things. I think we could have (dissected the film) without saying a word. I think every one of them will tell you that it wasn’t their best effort.”

Taylor added that a team learns a lot about itself after a loss and that the kids took a lot from the experience, adding that practice on Tuesday was the best the team’s had since Aug. 4.

“Even one of the players said that this was the best practice,” Taylor said. “I think there was a tremendous amount of focus. They didn’t allow the heat to beat them, and they knew there were things they could get better at. They went about focusing on those things.”

This week, the Tigers will host Headland in a Class 4A, Region 2 contest, where SHS holds a 5-3 edge in the series.

Headland enters the contest after taking double-digit losses to Dale County and Montgomery Catholic.

Taylor said he knows that the Rams didn’t want to start out this way, but DCHS and MC are good opponents.

Rams quarterback Joshua Bradford, at 6-foot-1 and 170 pounds, excels at staying in the pocket under pressure and can make long and accurate throws down field, the coach said.

“He got pounded against Dale County,” Taylor said about Bradford. “He took the blunt of it. The thing that was so impressive is that he stood in there time to time, and got a real strong arm. We watched him throw the ball 40-45 yards down the field (on film). He was on the money.

“If you find one in high school that has that kind of accuracy on the deep ball, that’s something special,” he said.

Bradford’s favorite targets are wide receivers Jimmy Spann and Brandon Feggins.

Defensively, the Rams like to base out of a “three-stack.”

“They do a lot of it out of it,” Taylor said of the formation. “They go man to man in the secondary. Especially in high school football, a team that does a good job with man coverage is tough. That means they put more in the box to stop the run. You see it so rarely it’s hard sometimes.”

Back in the film room earlier this week, Taylor said a lot was said, mainly from the coaches as they pointed out things that needed correcting.

“When you see the same play five or six times in a row, you start to think I should’ve done this and that,” he said. “Our defense made tremendous amounts of mistakes. At the same time, we’re up 7-3 in the fourth quarter. We had our opportunities offensively.

“The thing that I constantly say about football is that it is the ultimate team game,” he said. “That was the biggest thing they took from Monday. You can have nine guys doing exactly what they were supposed to do, but if you have that 10th or 11th guy not doing it, it’s no good.”

Kick off tomorrow night at SHS is at 7.