By Denis House
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
One team will be looking to gain momentum heading into the playoffs while the other will be searching for a season-ending win when South Laurel travels to take on Leslie County tonight in Hyden.
“Leslie County has a good football team,” South Laurel coach Matt Rhymer said. “They are young, but they do have good size and a couple of athletic kids who can make some plays. They have been a throwing teams for years, and they still like to throw, but they are trying to establish more of a running game lately.”
The Eagles come into the game with an overall record of 3-6 record and they are 0-3 in district play, but since they are in a four-team district, they will have a playoff game next week. Their wins have come against Harlan, Knott County Central and McCreary Central. Both teams have one common opponent in North Laurel. The Jaguars rolled over the Eagles, 57-6, and beat the Cardinals last week, 42-21.
Meanwhile the Cardinals will be playing for pride as they have missed out on the playoffs this season. Rhymer said getting a win against Leslie County would go along way in establishing his program.
“It would really mean a lot to this team and coaching staff to win this last game,” Rhymer said. “I hope these seniors can win their last game. It would help us in getting more kids out for football and raise the excitement around our program. We are very close to turning the corner, and a win would really give us a lot of momentum going into the off season workouts. We need great attendance in those.”
After being shutout out the previous two weeks, South Laurel was able to move the ball and score against North Laurel, and could have had more had they capitalized on some opportunities.
“It was good for us to move the ball and score some points last week,” Rhymer said. “I just wished we could have capitalized on a couple more drives where we came up short of points in the red zone. I thought our team blocked better and we had some players make some plays that helped us make first downs. We will get better and better at that. This week we need to continue blocking well and executing our offense. For us to win we have to play fast, physical football for four quarters and believe that we will win the game. We are excited about playing this game.”
Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. tonight at Leslie County High School.