Morgan Academy quarterback Dalton Lee tries to escape a Wilcox Academy defender during a jamboree game last week. The Senators will travel to Troy to face Pike Liberal Arts School for their season opener. -- Tim Reeves

Morgan traveling to Troy to face Patriots

Published 11:18pm Thursday, August 23, 2012

After months of preparation, the Morgan Academy Senators are ready to hit the field for their first game of the regular season — a game with a little added importance.

The Senators will travel to Troy on Friday to play the Pike Liberal Arts School Patriots at 7 p.m. in an Alabama Independent School Association Class AAA Region 2 game.

Bob Taylor, head football coach of Morgan Academy, said the Senators have had a good week of practice leading up to Friday night’s game and they have a fairly decent idea of what to expect when they face the Patriots, as the teams shared game film from last week’s jamboree games.

“It’s been going good and we’ve had three pretty good days of practice so far,” Taylor said. “Us and Pike got together and exchanged last week’s film, so we kind of have a general idea what’s going on. Of course, those games being jamborees, you don’t know if that’s everything they have. They’re very talented and our kids have put in a lot of work this week and are kind of understanding what we’re doing. We’re just fine tuning and getting ready to go for Friday.”

Taylor said the Patriots are an I-formation team that occasionally likes to line up three receivers out wide, and the matchup for the Senators will be like looking in a mirror.

“They’re traditionally an I-formation team, with some trips,” Taylor said. “No. 2, he’s a very good running back for them, he’s kind of all over the field. Their quarterback is pretty decent, offensive line is decent. We probably match up very well together just size wise all the way around. We’re pretty equal, I think. They don’t have but around 17, 18 players, but they get after it and play hard.”

Taylor added maintaining focus — from the coaches on down — will be key, and the Senators must be fundamentally sound in order to have a shot at victory, and if the offense can find some consistency, then it will take a lot of pressure off of the defensive unit.

“We’ve just got to execute. We’ve got to block, tackle, and execute offensively and defensively, as well as minimize mistakes and not lose focus when we get inside the redzone,” Taylor said. “We’ve just got to stay on that path where we’re driving the ball and doing what we’re supposed to be doing offensively, and in return our offense will help take care of some of our defense.”


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