By Gary Lloyd
TRUSSVILLE — Hewitt-Trussville’s biggest problem hasn’t been burly defensive fronts or freakish athletes to defend.
It’s been a yellow cloth.
Hewitt-Trussville is averaging right at 18 points per game through three games this season. The Huskies are also averaging 17.3 penalties per game.
“We’ve got to prepare, get to practice and cut out the penalties,” Hewitt-Trussville senior kicker T.J. McGettigan said after Friday’s 14-3 loss to No. 10 Vestavia Hills.
The game the Huskies have been preparing for this week is at Spain Park (3-1, 1-1 Class 7A, Region 3). Kickoff against the Jaguars is at 7 p.m. Friday. Spain Park was ranked No. 3 in Class 7A before last week’s 26-7 loss at Tuscaloosa County.
Hewitt-Trussville is 1-2 overall, with an 0-1 mark in the region.
You can say it almost every week, but this game is key for postseason play. Hewitt-Trussville has region losses to Tuscaloosa County (2-0 in the region) and Vestavia Hills (1-1 in the region). Hoover is 2-0 in region play, and Mountain Brook, Oak Mountain, and Spain Park are all 1-1. Thompson is 0-2. A third straight region loss could spell doom for Hewitt-Trussville’s playoff chances.
Spain Park head coach Shawn Raney said over the summer that consistency is something he wanted his Jaguars team to improve upon. So far this season, Spain Park was won games by scores of 5-3, 28-21 and 52-28. It’s only loss was a 26-7 defeat, a game in which it barely totaled 110 yards of offense.
It’s an interesting matchup. Which Spain Park team will show up? Can the Hewitt-Trussville offense click like it did in the second half against Gardendale and the first half at Tuscaloosa County? But most importantly, can Hewitt-Trussville cut down on the illegal shifts and illegal motions, eliminate the linemen downfield penalties?
For the Huskies to ride the bus home with a win Friday night, it will have to do so.
Contact Gary Lloyd at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.