Tupelo Golden Wave coach eager to keep team focused

By David Wheeler
Special to the Journal

Trent Hammond is happy with the outcome of his first game as head coach of the Tupelo Golden Wave football team.

He also wants the Wave to realize that moment is gone, and it is time to focus on Center Hill.

Hammond will get to see how bad his Wave’s memory is about last week when Tupelo kicks off on the road at 7 p.m. today.

Center Hill “lost their game last week, but turned the ball over in some key situations,” he said. “They’re not that kind of team.”

Center Hill is coming off a 55-6 loss to Horn Lake, but Hammond is quick to point out that the Mustangs have a history of playing the Wave tough. Tupelo was able to edge Center Hill 20-17 just a season ago.

“They have a very dynamic quarterback that can make plays,” Hammond said. “On film, he’s more dangerous than D. K. Buford.

“On defense, they have a 340-pound noseguard, and two linebackers that run to the football. They run a scheme similar to ours.”

The Wave opened the season with a 36-21 win over Lafayette.

The Tupelo defense held star Lafayette running back Buford to just 49 yards on the ground. And the Tupelo offense compiled nearly 300 yards rushing.

“We played hard and battled adversity well,” Hammond said. “That made us happy as coaches.”

Against Lafayette, Tupelo’s spread offense was not as pass-happy as some might have expected. The Wave only threw the football eight times while rushing for an unofficial 291 yards.”

“We voted as the player of the game our entire offensive line,” Hammond said. “They had a four-minute drive in the fourth quarter which helped to seal the game.”

Kicker Reed Bigham also had field goals of 39 and 49 yards.

This is the first of four straight road games for the Wave. The next two of those are at least in Lee County as Tupelo will play at Shannon and Saltillo.