Chickashanews.com

November 7, 2013

Chickasha faces do-or-die in Duncan encounter

Adam Troxtell
The Express-Star

CHICKASHA —

The fate of Chickasha's season will come right down to the wire.

Tonight, rivals and the team that stands the biggest chance of preventing the Fightin' Chicks from opening up postseason play in a week's time, Duncan, rolls into town. The similarities beyond their position in the playoff hunt are uncanny.

"I think our kids are very confident," Chickasha head coach Tom Cobble said. "Both teams have good quarterbacks, like to run the ball, and they are teams that have gotten better and better as the season has gone on. I think it's a toss-up."

Much like Chickasha's offense, the Demons employ an attack focussed on the ground. Whereas the Chicks offer running quarterback Cade Morris, running backs Daniel Neff and Tresjon Davis, and power-runner Josh Latham, a rare breed these days, they could easily be the same quarterback Connor Kelly, and running backs Je'Mario McCoy -- who recorded 123 yards off 24 carries last week -- and Austin Drake.

"They're a running team, and coach [Jim] Holloway and their coaches do a great job," Cobble said of Duncan. "There are similarities. We both have good defensive linemen. We've had a look at our offensive line and blocking schemes this week."

Both teams have offensive lines that have gone through trying seasons and defensive lines that started with little experienced and gained a lot. Much like Chickasha, Duncan also suffered a narrow defeat to Del City just last week in which they gained a surprising lead before it was snatched away. All told, it appears the final result at Memorial Stadium on Friday will be down to who shows up in better form.

"You've got to play with more energy and enthusiasm," Cobble said. "But, at the same time, you've got to make sure and play solid football; know your assignments and execute."

In other words, near perfection will be asked of both teams, and perhaps a little more will be needed from Chickasha. Not only must they win, but they have to make up a six point deficit in order to advance. Senior running back Daniel Neff admitted earlier this week that nerves were present, but the team has spent a week to try and understand what is possibly their biggest enemy of the season.

"Part of it is the nature of the game," Cobble said about the nerves faced by players and coaches this week. "You like to have that a little bit. You just have to be well prepared. Everyone's healthy, so that's positive, and we've been watching film and making sure we know what we're coming up against."

On the most uncertain of nights, one thing is for sure; players and coaches want a big, rowdy, home crowd to make the stadium loud.

"We need everyone, the whole community, the whole town, to come out," Neff said.