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Dresden avoids GC danger zone

Dresden avoids GC danger zone

Posted: Wednesday, August 29, 2012 12:01 pm

By ROBIN FRANCIS
Special To The Press
Everything in the high school football universe pointed toward the Gibson County at Dresden game Friday night being a dangerous game for the Lions.
Dresden was coming off a big win over rival Westview from the week before, they were dealing with a series of injuries and the Pioneers were hungry for a win to break a 34-game losing streak.
But, someone forgot to inform the offensive and defensive lines for the Lions about the trepidations of the match-up with Gibson County.
Dresden rushed for 348 yards and held the Pioneers to only 45 total yards en route to a 41-7 victory.
The Lions improve to 2-0 on the season, while the Pioneers fell to 0-2 and lost their 35th game in a row dating back to 2008. Ironically, the last victory for Gibson County came against the Lions.
Even though the Pioneers are a struggling program, first-year Dresden head coach Keith Hodge was a little wary about the game.
“Honestly, I was really nervous about this game,” said Hodge. “When you play a team like Gibson County, who has some good players that can make big plays, you have to be sharp and be focused on what you’re doing in front of you. I thought we didn’t have the best week of practice. We’re dealing with some adversity right now. I think we played hard tonight, and I think that’s what you have to do when dealing with adversity. You have to keep playing hard, doing things right and stick with what you do.”
Hodge’s nerves had to be soothed on the game’s first series as Lion defenders Alex Ellison and Bobby Hampton sacked Pioneer quarterback Markee Brown on consecutive plays before Devan Raymer torched the GC special teams with a 58 yard punt return for a touchdown for the game’s first score.
Raymer, though, was just getting started as the senior running back would find the end zone three more times in the first half and rush for 108 yards on the night.
Fellow back Joey Caldwell also eclipsed the century mark with 102 yards and a touchdown, and Torres Washington accumulated 97 yards and a touchdown on the evening for a dominating ground game for the Lions.
Hodge credited the offensive line for the Dresden rushing attack against the Pioneers.
“Gibson County gave us some different looks defensively and our offensive line fixed it,” according to Hodge. “That’s the good thing about having a veteran offensive line. They communicated very well and we started opening some big holes so we could do some things right in the backfield. I really thought our offensive line stepped up and did a pretty good job up front tonight. I thought all of our backs ran the ball very hard tonight. And that’s a good thing for us if teams are going to focus on Raymer, we’ve got to take some pressure off him and let some other guys carry the ball. We did that tonight. We distributed it very well tonight and gave it to some different backs and gave a different look, too. We ran the ball really hard tonight behind some good blocking.”
As well as the offense was clicking for Dresden, the Lions’ defense forced the Pioneers into seven punts on the night and only broke once as GC running back Justice Conley took an option pitch from Brown and scampered 37 yards for the Pioneers only score early in the second quarter.
“I think our defensive line did a heck of a good job tonight,” said Hodge. “They were flying to the ball for the most part. We missed a couple of tackles here and there, and you’re going to do that against a spread team. That’s what they want to do. Overall, I think our defense played very well tonight.”
In fact, the Lions’ defense basically set up camp in the Pioneer offensive backfield all night long. Dresden finished the game with five sacks and eleven tackles for lost yardage.
This Friday night begins District 13A play for the Lions as they travel to McKenzie to face the Rebels.
“That’s going be a big challenge for us,” said Hodge. “They’re going to prepare very well.”
 They’re a very well-coached team, and they’re going to do things right against us. They’re going to be ready for us. We knocked them out of the playoffs last year, and I know they’re hungry to play us right now. Hopefully, we’ll have a good week of practice to prepare for them.”
Gibson County will host District 13AA power Milan this Friday. Published in The WCP 8.28.12

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