PG Stuffs Pittsburgh Improves to 8-0, Trip to Spring Hill Next
The Pleasant Grove Hawks defense led the way in yet another big victory for PG last Friday in Pittsburgh.
The Hawks stopped a Pirate team that had scored nearly 100 points in their last two district games. They were held to 1 touchdown in the Hawks 28-10 victory.
Hawks Head Coach Josh Gibson was pleased, "We were able to stop the rushing attack and didn't give up the Big Play in the passing game." Austin Toler had 8 tackles and 4 tackles for losses. Xavier Benson also had 8 tackles, 7 of them solo and a big interception as well.
The Hawks did miss Chauncey Martin, who was held out with an injury. Gibson says, " Chauncey is a HUGE impact player on both sides of the ball, but we had several players that did a good job filling his role."
One of those was Sophomore Running Back Bruce Garrett, who rushed for over 100 yards and had several key runs, according to Gibson, "Bruce had a great game. He's a special player and making a big impact as a Sophomore."
The Hawks had a couple of huge pass plays that were wide open and seem to fool the Pirate defense. Coach Gibson says the Pirates probably were not expecting the Hawks to pass and it worked for his team.
Next up the Hawks are road warriors again as they travel to Spring Hill to take on the Panthers. Spring Hill has lost several district games by just a few points. To be exact, they are just 6 points from being 8-0 themselves according to Gibson who says they are playing really good football right now, "This is their Senior night and it will be a tough fought game because playoffs are on the line for their program. We will get their best shot. We will have to practice well this week, stay focused and get better."
The Panthers run a spread scheme on offense, but sometimes use two backs. They are approximately 70% run and 30% pass most of the time. On defense Coach says they run a split front and roll their kids down to stop the run.
The Hawks are closing in on winning the district and getting that #1 seed to begin the playoffs. Gibson says it's important to start the playoffs, "Everyone wants to be #1 and the 1 seed is exactly that. It gives you an opportunity to play a lower seeded opponent in the first round of the playoffs."
They say defense wins championships and the Hawk defense is certainly rising to the occasion. In the past three weeks they have held Gilmer to one of their lowest scoring outputs of the season, held the speedy Atlanta Rabbits to 17 and now a potent Pirate offense to one touchdown.
The weather was very cold and windy in Pittsburgh, but the PG crowd continued to outnumber their counterparts and were definitely noisier. The good news is much warmer weather awaits Hawk fans in Longview this Friday. No heavy coats needed, should be a huge and enthusiastic PG crowd on the road.