Min­ers make his­tory with out-of-state opener

The Saline Courier - - SPORTS - By Josh Briggs [email protected]­ton­courier.com

BAUX­ITE — The Baux­ite Min­ers will make his­tory today when they take the field to open their 2019 foot­ball sea­son. For the first time in school his­tory, Baux­ite will travel out of state for a reg­u­lar-sea­son game, tak­ing on the Cov­ing­ton, Ten­nessee, Charg­ers un­der the lights.

“This is the first time for Baux­ite and I think it is the first time for any­body in Saline County (to play out-of­s­tate op­po­nent),” said Head Coach Daryl Patton.

Patton and com­pany are ex­cited to get off the prac­tice field and into game ac­tion this week.

“Cov­ing­ton is very, very good,” Patton said. “They are well-coached and very dis­ci­plined. They are su­per ta­lented on de­fense and of­fense where they have a cou­ple of re­ally good run­ning backs that are just game-break­ers. We have our work cut out for us, but we are tired of prac­tic­ing. We want to see some­body else and it’s the start of the 2019 sea­son and our kids are look­ing for­ward to it. Our kids are up for the chal­lenge.”

Baux­ite will be with­out a num­ber of stars from last year’s squad due to grad­u­a­tion, in­clud­ing run­ning back Dawson Dabbs and quar­ter­back Seth Mcdow­ell. The two com­bined for nearly 2,500 yards rush­ing and 34 touch­downs a sea­son ago.

“We are look­ing for ex­e­cu­tion on of­fense and we want to be bal­anced — take what the de­fense is giv­ing us,” Patton said. “We have to fin­ish off plays with points. De­fen­sively, we have a cou­ple of in­juries but we have to swarm to the foot­ball and try to create some turnovers and

re­ally limit the big plays from Cov­ing­ton.”

Cov­ing­ton fin­ished run­nerup in the state fi­nals last sea­son, los­ing 21-14 to Al­coa.

The Charg­ers ended their sea­son with a 14-1 record.

Run­ning back MJ Hayes re­turns for Cov­ing­ton af­ter leading the team with 141 car­ries and 1,399 yards, in­clud­ing 15 touch­downs a sea­son ago.

Among this year’s 37 play­ers suit­ing up for the Charg­ers, 13 are se­niors.

Open­ing kick is set for 7 p.m.

Cov­ing­ton High School lo­cated just north of Mem­phis.

Patton said he plans to break the trip up for his team, in­clud­ing a walk­through at West Mem­phis High School be­fore suit­ing up for the game.

RICK NA­TION/SPE­CIAL to The Saline Courier

Baux­ite Head Coach Daryl Patton mans the side­lines dur­ing game last sea­son. Today, the Min­ers head to Cov­ing­ton, Ten­nessee, to chal­lenge the 2018 state run­ner-up Charg­ers to open the 2019 sea­son. Open­ing kick is planned for 7 p.m.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.