PREP FOOTBALL: W-WG, SWU clash in SCC match-upWESTBROOK — No matter which coach you ask, both Westbrook-Walnut Grove coach Carter Ross and Southwestern United coach Jason Fisher agree that this week’s matchup between the Southern Confederacy Conference rivals is a big one.
By: Jordan Willi, Worthington Daily Globe
WESTBROOK — No matter which coach you ask, both Westbrook-Walnut Grove coach Carter Ross and Southwestern United coach Jason Fisher agree that this week’s matchup between the Southern Confederacy Conference rivals is a big one.
“This is a huge game for us,” Ross said. “They want to move up in the standings and we need a win to get a better seed in the first round of the playoffs. A win would bolster our chances of staying ahead of Fulda in the conference.”
Of the two teams, the Wildcats of SWU have definitely had the tougher go of it this season. In the last three weeks, the Wildcats have taken on Mountain Lake Area, Edgerton/Ellsworth and Hills-Beaver Creek.
“We have had a rough last three weeks,” Fisher said. “Now we face W-WG and this game will not be any easier for us. We match up well and there has been a pretty good rivalry in the past between the two schools.”
On offense, both teams like to keep the ball on the ground when they can, which means both defenses will try and do their best to stop the run.
“They like to run the power sweep,” Ross said. “We have to play discipline football. We also have to match their offensive lines intensity and not cave at the line of scrimmage.”
Fisher, like Ross believes that the game will be decided at the line of scrimmage.
“It will be all about the line of scrimmage,” Fisher said. “We will try to run the ball and make them come make the play on us. It will be about how well we execute.”
Another area of the game both teams will need to be conscience of is turnovers. A costly turnover at the wrong time could spell doom for either squad.
“It will come down to who makes the least mistakes,” Ross said. “Whoever can take care of the ball and can force turnovers will have the upper hand come the end of the game.”
As much as turnovers can decide the game, special teams will also play a big role in who comes out on top Friday night in Westbrook.
“We have been close to breaking a few returns for touchdowns,” Fisher said. “We have had a few of our kickoff and punt returns go pretty far this season, but none have broken free yet. That could be a huge momentum change for either team.”
Any time a team is at or below .500, like W-WG (3-3) and SWU (1-5) are, it might become harder for a coach to keep their squad up for the next game. However, Ross doesn’t feel like that is a problem for his team.
“If I have to motivate my players in Game 7 of the season then they are not ready to play,” Ross said. “We have come off some bad losses and played well. We executed well last week and I feel like we can play the same this week.
“It all comes down to focus. The kids are going to have to dig deep and go to battle to get the win.”
Kickoff for this week’s game is 7 p.m. in Westbrook.