Chargers hope rematch with Milan is not a repeat
Posted: Friday, November 11, 2011 12:02 pm
Once again, Westview is involved in a rematch in the state playoffs.
Although Charger head coach Don Coady doesn’t necessarily believe in looking back, Milan head man Jeff Morris certainly doesn’t want to repeat the mistakes from that previous game.
Westview will visit Milan for the second time this season when the two teams play in the second round of the Class 3A playoffs on Friday night. Kickoff from historic Johnnie Hale Stadium will be 7 p.m.
Milan won that first meeting back on Sept. 30, 16-7, jumping out to a 13-0 lead and then holding off several Charger challenges before getting a late field goal to seal the deal.
Coady feels some of the things that happened in that game aren’t likely to happen this time around.
The Chargers mixed some option into its offensive scheme with Ryne Vinson running the set effectively at times.
“It’s worked for us off and on,” Coady said of the formation since that game. “It was good that particular night, but some of that is because it probably caught them a little off-guard. They’ll be better prepared for it this time.”
Westview (7-4) was also able to work over Milan’s still-young offensive line in that first game to keep the Bulldogs from putting together time-draining drives following that opening spurt of points.
“Both teams are older now,” Coady said. “They started the year with a young offensive line, but they have a complete season under their belts now.”
Westview actually finished with a slight advantage in total yards that first time, helped some by Bulldog turnovers.
Morris believes looking back at that game, in addition to what the Chargers have done since, will be critical in finding an edge this time around.
“We let Westview monopolize the football, and we kept turning it over in the second half,” he said. “We didn’t have much success moving the ball against them, so we know what we’ve got to work on. They have the best offensive and defensive lines we’ve faced this season. They’re very big and strong, and they don’t beat themselves,”
Milan has some big-time playmakers who have keyed the team’s 31 points-per-game average this season.
Kevius Finch has rushed for 621 yards and seven TDs, while Arkel Coleman has 358 rushing yards and a team-best 14 touchdowns. Trey Belew is another ball-carrying threat as well.
Quarterback Caleb Powell can keep defenses honest with his arm as he’s thrown for 1,137 yards and 12 touchdowns,
“(Finch) is fast, (Belew) is elusive and (Coleman) is their power back and is also good on defense,” Coady said, summing up the Bulldog team. “Their defensive line is strong, and their defensive backs have speed.”
Westview certainly has its own arsenal on both sides, guaranteeing another classic matchup of West Tennessee powerhouses.
Collins Alexander leads the Chargers in rushing with 926 yards and nine TDs and is also one of the team’s top receivers with 15 catches for 144 yards.
Wyatt Zarecor has 508 yards and six touchdowns on 95 carries. Will Thompson has caught 16 passes for 244 yards, and Scout Edwards has 12 catches for 227.
Vinson has completed 50-of-96 passes for 603 yards.
Westview’s defense accounted for two of Powell’s four interceptions on the season and has held opponents to 218 yards and 15 points per game.
Hunter Beale leads the Chargers with 101 tackles, Damani Taylor has a team-best 14 stops behind the line of scrimmage and R.J. Scott has five of the team’s eight pick-offs.
Both teams have a rich playoff history, and they have a rich history playing against each other.
The two teams will be meeting for the 57th time, Milan leading all-time 38-16-2. Five of those meetings have been in the playoffs, Milan with four wins.
The Bulldogs will be playing their 100th playoff game, owning a 68-31 record. Westview is 26-19 in the playoffs. Published in The WCP 11.10.11