By Ronald Frazier
As Glenwood enjoyed a bye week that marks the halfway point of their 2018 season, the Gators are looking to improve on their 1-4 mark on the year. Glenwood will travel to Birmingham on the 28th to battle Noxubee County, Mississippi at Birmingham Southern’s field.
Glenwood coach Jason Gibson had some things in mind for the extra week of practice against an opponent he knows will be a challenge. The Tigers from Mississippi are the defending 2017 state class 4-A public school champions. However, 2018 has not been as kind as the Tigers find themselves also with a losing record at 2-4.
“They have a 5-star recruit receiver that has already committed to Ole Miss and these are the kind of games you need to play if you want to do something in the playoffs.” said Jason Gibson.
“We are doing the right things defensively and have been all season long,” said Gibson of his team. “We have given up a couple of plays but it’s been other areas that we are working on like special teams.”
“On offense, we need to work on our passing game and get that in the flow,” Gibson added. “On the ground we have done some good things. All three of our backs, (Bryce) Valero, (Daryl) Monn, and (Lawrence) Vinson have all had some good moments and the offensive line has been good.”
“Plus in 25 years I have never run a no-huddle offense and we have done it this year and it has worn out our opponents, “said Gibson. “We ran 73 offensive plays against Morgan in our last game compared to 40-something for them.”
“We just have to quit shooting ourselves in the foot on a few plays because we have been in every game we have lost except the first when we were learning what we had.” he added.
Gibson was correct in his assessment. In the loss against Bessemer, special teams hurt the Gators as two long kick returns set up two drives of less than five yards and the Rebels added a third TD on a fumble recovery scoop and score play. That was 21 of their 37 points in a 37-20 loss.
In the 13-10 loss to Deerfield-Windsor, the Gators missed a field goal and have the visitors a short field again that produced the Knights winning TD in the third. The Gators had two chances as they drove deep into Deerfield-Windsor territory in the 4th but the passing game produced one completion.
In the 22-14 loss to Morgan Academy, the Senators went ahead after a kickoff and penalty put the ball 40 yards away from the goal and they got the TD and a two-point conversion to go ahead 15-14. Glenwood drove for a first and goal but a bad snap lost 15 yards and on the last play of the game, the Senators blocked a Gator field goal effort and ran it in for a touchdown for the final score.
“One thing I like about this team is that we are together. There is no lack of effort on the field. Our motto is stay together and that’s what they do and they never quit. As a coach you can’t ask for any more,” Gibson reported.
“And these tough games will get is ready for the next big stretch as we have two very key region games following Friday’s game.” Gibson said of his upcoming schedule.