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Braves out to 4-0 start; will be a hurdle

To be honest, in my career on a sideline I alway looked at games like Union as opportunities with very little attenuate pressure. I used to tell my kids, “Have fun, play loose, and go out there and give it everything you have. No one, outside this locker room, believes we can win tonight. We have an opportunity here to shock the world!” If two teams walk out on any field of play, either can conceivably win. We have seen lots of examples of this principle in action. Union is a very good ball club and they will present a very difficult challenge, and not just to Central, but to the entire Class 3A, first district. Still, if we play mistake/penalty free football (or close to it), protect the ball, and are able to run it…

HB Lyons, Scouting Director, KPGFootball

We are approaching the mid-season, report card for the regular season. So far, the Storm stands at 2-2 and has a tough game upcoming with Union County (4-0).

Union County has beaten North (Madisonville North-Hopkins), Crittenden, Caldwell, and Murray. Central has lost to North and Crittenden, but has beaten Caldwell.

One would have to give the Braves an “A” to this point. We’re a score, in the game down in Marion, Kentucky, away from scoring an “A” ourselves.

Reese Belt (’24) has been showing up for The Storm this season. The 6’5,” DE leads the club with 35-tackles, one-FF, and one-half of a TFL. Here is our “Scouting Report” for the Union County Braves. We will include in the parenthetical expressions the jersey number and graduating class for each of the Braves mentioned.

The Braves are getting tremendous production from the QB-slot

KHSAA statistical website

The Braves are getting tremendous production from the QB-slot, with Jarren Johnson (1, ’25). Johnson has already gained 577-yards in the first four games and has tallied 10-rushing TD’s.

Johnson from TheGleaner.com

Johnson’s passing is a bit understated, as he is 8 of 19 in 4-games for 143-yards and 2-thrown TD’s. His management of Coach Johns’ offense, and ability to break down a defense with his feet, is undeniable and impressive.

William McPeake (20, ’26) is averaging over a 100-yards a game with 419-yards gained over the first four. Johnson and he give the Braves a similar one-two punch in the ground game enjoyed by The Storm with McNary and Parker.

Amare Black (9, ’25) and Leland Fought (12, ’24) are leading the pass rush with 5-sacks between them (2.5 per). The team has only recorded (so far) eight QB-sacks. Logan Hall  (56) has 3.5-TFL’s to pace the ball club in that all-important statistic. Hall seems to be spending a lot of time mulling about the opponent’s backfield.

The Braves present a tremendous hurdle but also quite an opportunity for us to learn about ourselves and where we are…

Chris Manning, HFC, HCCHS Storm

Koleby Schroeder (7, ’25) has 4-picks in as many games. We believe Schroeder may be among the leaders in the KHSAA at any level of play in interceptions.

Prediction: Calpreps.com gives the Braves a 98% chance of winning and sets the spread at 35-points. According to the computer algorithm, The Storm should be on the short end of a 41-6 at game’s end.

Amare Black, from The Gleaner

However, the Storm has an opportunity to make a real first-district statement. Union figures to take the crown, but the Storm are in a battle for second with Trigg, McLean, and Hancock.

We have run the numbers on how Central measures against the other three. The computer portends that those four teams are so close you could throw up one blanket and cover the lot.

If we beat the Braves, the other teams may not even bother showing up to play us (denote sarcasm). If we can make the Braves “work for it,” there will be some additional sweating around our district come Saturday morning.

We’re taking The Storm and the 35-points. You do whatever your heart and head direct.

This is Fletcher W. Long, reporting for KPGFootball, reminding you to PLAY THROUGH THE WHISTLE!

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About Fletcher Long 1497 Articles
Two-time winner of Kentucky Press Association awards for excellence in writing and reporting news stories while Managing Editor of the Jackson (KY) Times-Voice

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