NP v Holly Springs

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 19, 2008

Cougars to face tough Hawks

By Myra Bean

None of the teams in 3-3A exited the non-conference season unscathed.

Tunica Rosa Fort was the only one to emerge with a winning record, 2-1. Two were winless, Byhalia and Senatobia, 0-3 each. The other four have identical 1-2 records.

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Tonight, North Panola and Holly Springs will be starting from scratch.

Holly Springs lost to Cordova to start the season 42-29 and defeated Water Valley. Last week they lost their home opener to Southaven 50-7.

Holly Springs’ only score against Southaven was a 90-yard kickoff return.

North Panola had some of the same problems plague them last week against 4A powerhouse Lafayette County where they lost 47-6.

“This is a very important game for both teams,” said Cougar head coach Clifton Davis Sr.

Holly Springs brings some highly talented skill people, Davis said. On offense, the running back is a strong runner and the wide receiver poses a “deep threat,” according to Davis. He expects Holly springs to bring a spread offense with four to five wide.

On defense, the Hawks put up a five-man front and blitz a lot.

“This will be a tough ballgame,” Davis said. “I hope we can match their intensity”

The Cougars had some problems that magnified against Lafayette. One of them was their pass protection. Last week before quarterback Quin Ellis could get set, he had to get rid of the ball before the receiver had run the route.

That pass protection was one of the problems Davis and the Cougars had to iron out in practice this week.

The defense failed to read the Lafayette offense last week and Davis was puzzled by this. Therefore, he had the team to walk through some scenarios in practice.

North Panola has too many dropped passes for the coach’s peace of mind and the team has worked on the receivers concentration.

“All the wide receivers have to do is concentrate on catching the football when they are out there,” he said.

The district is wide open, according to Davis.

“It is up there for whoever makes the proper adjustments,” he said.

Kickoff in Holly Springs is 7:30 p.m.