SIA hopes to pose challenge for PCA|[9/30/05]

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 30, 2005

Sharkey-Issaquena Academy enters tonight’s District 4-A showdown with Porters Chapel winless, but dangerous, PCA coach Randy Wright said.

“We feel like they should be 4-0 right now,” said Wright, who has scouted the Confederates twice in person. “They should have whipped Tri-County and lost 14-6. We are extremely concerned.”

Sharkey has been in every game this season, losing once by one point, once by eight and once by 11 points. The defense has kept the team competitive as the offense has struggled.

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The Confederates (0-4, 0-2 District 4-A) have scored only 33 points this season.

Porters Chapel has outscored its opponents through four games 130-3. That included a 1-0 forfeit win over Rebul last week. The Eagles have played only three games, having allowed a lone field goal to Tensas in a 30-3 win.

“We expect to see what we have seen on film and that is a very good team, probably the best in the north half of the state,” SIA coach Cori Britt said. “We are hoping to play a good game and give them a challenge. No one so far has been able to challenge them.”

Wright said his team has had as normal a practice schedule as possible in a season like no other. Hurricane Katrina forced a postponement of a game with CM&I. Then Union had to cancel its game with PCA because of power outages in Georgetown. PCA was supposed to play Rebul last Friday night, but the Raiders had several injuries that kept them from playing. The Raiders are scheduled to play tonight against Veritas.

Instead of playing last week, PCA took a trip to the Ole Miss-Wyoming game in Oxford.

Wright said the players just want to play football again.

“We’re looking forward to developing some kind of routine and get things going,” Wright said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to get back to a little normalcy.”

Porters Chapel spoiled Sharkey’s playoff aspirations a year ago en route to the district championship. Zack McDaniel, The Vicksburg Post’s Area Offensive Player of the Year last season, gained more than 2,000 yards in leading the Confederates to a 7-3 record.

Six seniors graduated from that team, however, and Britt has been forced to use several freshmen. Most of the 13 high school students will play both ways.

McDaniel’s graduation means a more balanced SIA team, Wright said.

“They have a quarterback that can throw it, some receivers that can go catch it and a couple running backs that can run it,” Wright said. “They are big up front and have a very balanced offensive attack.”

PCA will be celebrating homecoming with festivities beginning at 7 p.m.

Temperatures are supposed to dip into the lower 60s tonight, making it the first night with a true football feel.