By Brandon Speck/NEMS Daily Journal
There won’t be any secrets to either side tonight when New Albany visits Amory in a clash of top Class 4A teams.
Tied for fifth in the Journal’s Class 3A/4A rankings, Amory likes the air and New Albany is much more comfortable with two feet on the ground.
“Of course our biggest fear is their offense,” New Albany coach Ron Price said. “You don’t see it week in and week out. We’ve got our hands full. We have to limit their big plays and contain them.”
Amory has made a living off of big plays since last season and with sophomore quarterback Jon David Poss early on this season.
Both teams are 2-1. New Albany won 27-0 at its place last season.
Amory coach Trent Hammond said his team was overwhelmed by New Albany’s size last year.
“We’re going to have to be able to match their physicality,” Hammond said. “It’s kind of a David vs. Goliath thing. They’re really big and physical and we’re not a team that has big kids anywhere on our roster.”
Hammond wants his guys to execute well offensively to overcome some of the size differential.
The Panthers are coming off a tough last-second loss against rival Aberdeen.
Aberdeen held Amory to its lowest output of the early season, limiting Poss to 120 yards with two touchdowns and his first two picks of the year. Poss still has 750 yards and nine touchdowns. Devin McIntosh has 297 yards and four touchdowns on 10 grabs.
New Albany will counter with a ground game led by senior Boston Newsome and his 508 yards and seven touchdowns. He already has 101 carries. Mate O.J. Hardin has rushed for 135 yards and four scores on 21 touches.
“We don’t want to get in a shootout for sure,” Price said. “If we can control the ball on offense like we’ve been doing, it will be an advantage for us, to control the pace of the game, keep our defense off the field and our offense on.”
Poss drew one of his two starts last season against the Bulldogs when Forest Williams was out with a torn MCL.