SOARING INTO THE PLAYOFFS: Eagles hoping for big game to upset Wadley

Published 12:05 am Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Pleasant Home Eagles (5-5) know they have their hands full when they travel to Wadley on Friday night to take on the Bulldogs (9-0) in the first round of the Class 1A state playoffs.

“This is a big deal for these kids,” Pleasant Home head coach Rick Mercer said. “Regardless of the outcome, these kids had a good year.”

Mercer said that he knows they are up against a tough challenge.

“They have one of the highest scoring offenses and are allowing the fewest points on defense throughout all classifications,” Mercer said. “I don’t think their region is as strong as ours, but it’s going to take a monster effort for us to take them down. It’s not often that a No. 4 seed beats a No. 1 seed, but hopefully we can slip under the radar.”

This season, Wadley has scored 488 points and given up just 39 points.

The Bulldogs haven’t allowed more than seven points in any game this season and only scored fewer than 53 points twice (47 and 40).

Mercer said that the Eagles will make the long road trip and give it their best shot.

“I think we really have a good chance of playing with them,” Mercer said. “If we can keep the game in striking distance, we could have a shot in the fourth. I do believe that we have more of chance than anyone in the state is giving us. They wouldn’t play the game on Thursday, so if we are going to have to drive three and half hours on Veterans Day when the kids are out of school, we are going to go up there and make a statement.”

The key to having a chance was making Wadley earn everything they get.

“The biggest thing is that we can’t give them anything,” Mercer said. “If they are going to score, make the run 10 plays to get in the end zone.”