Morgan needs win to stay alive

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The Selma Times-Journal

The light bulb switched on for Robert Gartman.

Well, not really. He just took a closer look at the film.

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Youth has hurt the Senators (3-4, 2-3 Class AAA Region 1) in more ways than one this season.

Without a wealth of veteran players that can pick things right up, the team’s production has slipped.

“The biggest thing I’ve done wrong is not staying on top of what it takes to execute the Veer offense,” Gartman said. “I looked at the film, and it’s one or two people breaking down or missed assignments.

Those little details have been the difference.”

Morgan tried something different last week. Having run the same offense for about two decades, the Senators tried to throw a wrench in Edgewood’s game plan.

“We ran some Wishbone last week,” Gartman said. “I felt like it would give us an edge. I guess in some ways it did, even though it wasn’t enough to win the ball game. This week, we’re going back to the Veer.”

The experiment didn’t quite work but, but after lackluster performances in recent games, it was worth a shot.

Now that Gartman has diagnosed the problems in the Senators’ traditional offense, it’s his hope things will pick up.

“I think they feel more comfortable with it because I do,” Gartman said. “This is definitely not the first time we’ve run this offense. We’ve run it here for the past 20 years. I decided to change back to it Monday right as practice started. The players didn’t have to ask any questions hardly.

Not having a breakaway home run threat in high school football is deadly, but we’ll still play our game. We still don’t have a lot of turnovers and not a lot of penalties.”

The impetus for Friday’s game against Fort Dale is simple: Win and stay alive. Lose, and there will be no playoffs this year.

The Eagles (6-1, 4-1) are tied for second place in the region and were 20-15 winners over Glenwood last week.

“We don’t win this and we’ll be out of the playoffs,” Gartman said. “But at the same time, we still have homecoming and we still have a rivalry game in Wilcox Academy. So we’re not throwing in the towel on the rest of the season.”