The West Lincoln Rebels look to put last weekâ€™s 21-18 loss to Lincolnton behind them. Preparing to face a strong Bunker Hill Bears team (3-2, 0-1) will help them do so faster than normal.
Rebelsâ€™ head coach Butch Parker knows the Bears will make his team show they can pass the football.
â€œFrom everything weâ€™ve seen they like to take the running game away. They put eight and nine in the box.
Thatâ€™s what they did to Maiden,â€ he said.
One lesson that Parker and his staff learned against the Wolves is they shouldâ€™ve gone to the air more.
â€œThatâ€™s something we might have learned at Lincolnton is we might need to throw it more on first down. Iâ€™ve been throwing 10 or 11 passes a game but against better competition we probably need to throw it more,â€ he said.
The Rebels welcomed back running back Will Tallent to the lineup against the Wolves. Tallent looked fully recovered carrying the ball 11 times for 115 yards.
Gene Arp, who rushed for over 360 yards in a three-game stretch, is expected to see more carries this week.
The problem, according to the coach, was that the Rebels only ran 39 offensive plays against Lincolnton. Touches touches were limited for everyone.
Parker was not pleased with the play last week of his offensive line.
â€œTheyâ€™ve got to have a better game than they had against Lincolnton. They have a six-man front and theyâ€™re big olâ€™ boys. We just have to have a better game. We just didnâ€™t block the right people.â€
The Bears feature an explosive offense with J.P. Killian, Martin Turbeville and Demario Miller being the centerpieces.
â€œTheyâ€™re the third-most prolific offense in the league. Theyâ€™ve got Killian (J.P), Turbeville â€” heâ€™s an outstanding football player. They also have Demario Miller and they score a lot of points,â€ he said.
Entering the game Friday night, the Bears are averaging nearly 30 points a contest. The Rebelsâ€™ defense has given up only 9.8 points a game.
Last week, the Rebels surrendered over 300 yards rushing to the Wolves. Parker looks to Antonio Rojo, Arp, Johnny Walker and Spencer Sutton, the Rebelsâ€™ front four, to do a better job containing Killian.
â€œThose four men have to play better. When you give up 300 yards rushing you know you didnâ€™t do that well,â€ he said.
The coach feels that the x-factor will how his team responds mentally to another quality football team.
â€œI think our kids have confidence in themselves and that was evidenced by the comeback against Lincolnton. The positive thing we take from that game is we didnâ€™t play very well against Lincolnton but still had a chance to win the game,â€ Parker said.
â€œItâ€™s mental. Itâ€™s getting back to doing the things we did the first four games we won,â€ Parker said.
by John Mark Brooks