Al­covy football en­ters re­gion play

The Covington News - - Sports - BRYAN FAZIO bfazio@cov­news.com

For the first time in two years, Al­covy had non-re­gion op­po­nents on its football sched­ule, break­ing up the sea­son into two phases.

The Tigers be­gin that sec­ond phase to­day, host­ing Re­gion 2-AAAAAA mate Luella at 7:30 p.m. at Sharp Sta­dium.

Al­covy is com­ing off a close, 13-10 loss at Jack­son, in which it led 10-0 be­fore giv­ing up 13 straight points to fall to 1-3. The Tigers’ of­fense has been lim­ited throughout the first part of the sea­son, av­er­ag­ing just 16.8 points per game.

“I think the big­gest thing is we’re still try­ing to make some im­prove­ments on of­fense,” Al- covy coach Kirk Hoffman said. “We have to find some ways to be­come con­sis­tent on of­fense.”

The Tigers have shown some of those flashes of offensive qual­ity, such as a 24-10 win over East­side, but have been hurt by mi­nor things here and there.

“If you go back and look at first four games, at times on of­fense we’ve looked pretty good and at times we haven’t. If we’re not do­ing well on of­fense, we’re miss­ing one as­sign­ment and miss­ing one block.

"We’ve told our kids we have to get them on the same page, hold­ing blocks and keep­ing their as­sign­ments.”

Luella has given up 33.5 points a game in its four games this sea­son, all losses. The Lions got the clos­est to a win last Fri­day, fall­ing 22-20 to Henry County.

“The big thing when you look at Luella is they’ve played some qual­ity football teams,” Hoffman said. “They’re a lot bet­ter than their record in­dic­tates, and we’ve been telling the kids that all week.”

The Lions run a spread of­fense out of the pis­tol for­ma­tion be­hind se­nior quar­ter­back Jared Hendricks, who also has two solid run­ning backs to hand the ball off to.

“We have to make sure on de­fense that we play as­sign­ment football and keep guys from get­ting big plays on us,” Hoffman said.

The Lions de­fense has three star play­ers, who have held Langston Hughes to seven points and Dutch­town to 10.

“De­fen­sively, he has about three kids who can make big plays on you,” Hoffman said. “We’ve got to hem those guys in and make sure they don’t get big plays on us.”

The Tigers will also look to main­tain pos­ses­sion against the Lions’ de­fense, as they have im­proved in the turnover cat­e­gory since giv­ing it away seven times in the first two games.

“The big thing about turnovers early for us was that we had two or three tipped balls,” Hoffman said.

Al­covy fin­ished in first place in Re­gion 3-AAAA a year ago, be­fore mov­ing to Re­gion 2-AAAAAA af­ter the Ge­or­gia High School As­so­ci­a­tion re­clas­si­fi­ca­tion this year.

“Ev­ery­body in the re­gion is 0-0,” Hoffman said. “Ev­ery­thing you’ve done to this point doesn’t mat­ter; if you’re 4-0 or 0-4, it doesn’t mat­ter.”

Bryan Fazio /The Cov­ing­ton News

Marcus Wil­liams runs for Al­covy against East­side on Sept. 14. The Tigers need Wil­liams and their of­fense to step up as Re­gion 2-AAAAAA sea­son be­gins to­day.

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