Teams try to avoid 0-2 region hole

Published 6:18 pm Thursday, September 8, 2011

Isabella-Thorsby is always a bitter rivalry, but this season the two teams will be playing for even more than bragging rights.

Both teams suffered disappointing losses in Week 2—and the losses came in region games. The squads at 7 p.m. Friday will be trying to avoid an 0-2 region start, which would make a playoff berth at the end of the season somewhat less than likely.

“It puts a little more pressure on you,” IHS coach Scott Booth said. “If you go 0-2, you’re fighting an uphill battle the rest of the year. We want to try and get it back to even.”

The Mustangs had a chance to be playing for a 2-0 region record, but Billingsley last week came back from a 14-0 deficit to win.

Booth said the focus for his team should still be consistency.

“We had points in the game where we played real well, and we had points where we looked like we had never played football before,” he said.

Booth said Isabella would spend this week going over game film and talking about how each player can improve.

Meanwhile, not much went right for Thorsby in its loss at Francis Marion, so the Rebels will also have plenty of mistakes to correct.

Players and fans will surely be fired up for the rivalry game, but Booth cautioned that the opponent is not what’s important.

“If we go up there and don’t execute, it doesn’t matter who we’re playing,” he said.

Who will win?

Thorsby had a tough time stopping Francis Marion’s rushing attack in last week’s 68-28 loss. This week, they’ll find another team that wants to pound the ball. Look for a closer final score but for Isabella to be the team that avoids an 0-2 start in region play.

Pick: Isabella | Picks record: 7-4

Who do you think will win the Isabella-Thorsby game?

  • Isabella (57%, 20 Votes)
  • Thorsby (43%, 15 Votes)

Total Voters: 35

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Also Friday night

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Though Jaryus Wilson has played well—even leading Verbena to a season-opening win over rival Thorsby—the Red Devils might finally be feeling the loss of senior quarterback Christian Coston to an injury. You can’t lose a player of that caliber and not have a drop off. Pick: Notasulga

Chilton Co. (0-2) at Brookwood (1-1)

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Holt (0-2) at Jemison (2-0)

After opening with two wins, it appears Jemison has a chance for a special season. The Panthers need to be on guard for an upset, though, as Holt has scored 23 points in each of its losses—in games against teams with stout defenses. Pick: Jemison

No. 9 Maplesville (2-0) at Holy Spirit (1-1)

Maplesville this week should continue to prepare for a crucial three-game stretch that is bookended by games against Billingsley and Pickens County. Some of the young Red Devils will be seasoned by then. Pick: Maplesville

Vincent (1-1) at Billingsley (2-0)

Don’t look now, but Billingsley is one of only three local teams left without a loss on its record. The Bears could continue that distinction this week but won’t have an easy time with a Vincent squad coming off a 40-6 win over Central-Hayneville. Pick: Billingsley

Brooklane at Chilton Christian (1-1)

Chilton Christian Academy played remarkably better in its first home game, a 58-12 win over Faith Christian, than it did in a loss at Trinity. With another home game this week, look for the Patriots to build even more momentum. Pick: Chilton Christian