The Tigers were driving with a chance to take the lead in the fourth quarter a year ago and an errant screen pass was ruled a lateral and called a fumble that was recovered by the Panthers and they held on for the win.
This season the teams are still evenly matched and the game could, once again, come down to the final drive.
Both teams are in search of their first wins of the young season and the first points with both being shutout in week one.
“It was disappointing last week, we were kind of overmatched by a really good Class 5A team,” BHS coach Craig Brodie said. “We’re a very, very young, and inexperienced team. I think they’re excited this week. The kids feel like we’re a little bit more evenly matched against this opponent. They’re excited.”
With each team licking its wounds from tough losses in week one, it’s not hard to pick up on the enthusiasm from both teams leading up to tonight’s game.
“It’s hard not to be, we’re still searching for that first win of the season, you better be pumped up about going out and competing on Friday night so we can go ahead and put one in the win column,” MCHS coach Brandon Nowlin said. “Our biggest problem, day in and day out, seems to be ourselves. We find new and creative ways to hurt ourselves in a football game. We’ve got to minimize our mistakes, turnovers and missed assignments and penalties especially. We’ve got a lot of things we’ve got to improve on.”
The Panthers and Tigers run a similar style offense with both utilizing the spread.
In Morgan City’s case they look a lot like the Texas Tech teams from the Mike Leach era, with quarterback Hoang Ngyuen looking over to Nowlin for potential changes to the play based on how the defense is lined up.
“We’re going to have to adjust to all the formations they try to get into,” Brodie said. “They like to outnumber you to one side or the other. They’ll line up in a formation and then the quarterback will step back and look over and the coach will change the play based on how we line up. So, we’re going to have to be able to disguise some coverages and do some things. Since they’re trying to trick us, we’ve got to do the same thing back I guess.”
MCHS starting running back Adeyemi Wheeler is sidelined with an ankle injury, so Eric Walker will be responsible for most of the Tigers carries this week.
Walker ran for 58 yards on 11 carries against Comeaux.
“Eric is going to be getting most of the carries with our first team back Adeyemi Wheeler out,” Nowlin said. “We have freshman Keyvan Marsch who will probably have to step it up a good bit. Demarcus Skipper is a guy that has all the ability in the world, but can’t get out of his own way when it comes to learning our system — he’s the only person that keeps himself off the field on offense or defense. And Henry Fraijo, one of our linebackers, might share a few carries.”
Nowlin said he doesn’t expect too many drastic changes from Berwick’s style of play from last season to tonight, but he said he expects goods things from Brodie’s team in the future.
“I know Coach Brodie pretty well in the short time that I’ve been here,” Nowlin said. “He’s going to do a great job over there. I have nothing but respect for that coaching staff. Several guys on the staff last year are still there and helping him out. They seem to be a little bit more focused, but they’re still the same team. They’ve got more numbers and all that, which is fine and great. But athletically they’re not a whole lot different than what I saw last year.”
Much like last season, this game has the potential to come down to the last mistake.
“I think it’s going to be a great matchup,” Nowlin said. “We’re both searching for a win — both coaching staffs and both teams are fighting some of the same battles. We’re both trying to find ourselves as a program and a football team. It’s going to help out whoever wins this ballgame. It will be a nice little shot in the arm going into the meat of our schedules. Hopefully it will be us.”