The West Lincoln Rebels are coming off a 50-0 loss Friday night against Shelby. Things donâ€™t get any easier as they host Bandys (5-3, 2-2 Midwest 2A) this Friday.
Rebels head coach Butch Parker and staff are concerned foremost about Trojansâ€™ linebacker Matt Woodlief who is a big reason Bandys only surrenders 14 points a game second best in the MW 2A.
â€œWe have to block and we got to start by blocking Woodlief. Heâ€™s very aggressive and a physical middle linebacker,â€ he said.
One area West Lincoln has struggled in recent weeks is being able to efficiently throw the football. Parker hopes that improves this week in much-needed win.
â€œWe got to throw the football. We have to get some completions. We havenâ€™t thrown the ball very well in a couple of weeks. There are a lot of components to that. You have to throw it good and you have to catch it. The big component is in the middle and we havenâ€™t done any of them well,â€ he said.
West Lincoln will try to slow Trojansâ€™ running back Chris Spade who is widely considered as one of the premier backs in the area. Parker is well aware of how Spade can affect a game.
â€œTheir offense is built around him. He has a tremendous amount of speed. Heâ€™s not a power runner, heâ€™s a speed runner. We donâ€™t expect to shut him down, we have to slow him down and contain him,â€ he said.
Leading the way for Spade, will be Woodlief and Byron Sigmon.
â€œMattâ€™s a big olâ€™ strong lad. Byronâ€™s a strong kid. It gives them an inside-outside punch,â€ Parker said.
Tyler Rowe will call the signals for Bandys. Although heâ€™s had to experience some growing pains, Parker still feels he is capable.
â€œHeâ€™s an adequate quarterback. He had to replace Zach Elliot and thatâ€™s tough,â€ he said.
According to Parker, the Rebels will need to rebound coming off a lopsided loss.
â€œWe got overwhelmed by a great Shelby team. We have to pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off,â€ he said.
Bandys has lost three games on the season which spurs Parker on in likening them to a wounded animal.
â€œTheir pride has been dented a little bit. We can try to jump on them and keep that wounded animal down and maybe theyâ€™ll roll over. They might come out bearing their teeth and fighting for survival.â€
Friday night is senior night for West and Parker is laying down a stiff challenge for those players.
â€œWeâ€™re going to have 13 young men out there who are playing one of their last football games at West Lincoln. I need those 13 to get excited and hopefully spread that excitement. I firmly believe if we play a good football game then weâ€™ll have a chance to win it.â€by John Mark Brooks