Friday Night Preview: Oct. 18, 2013

All seven Marengo County teams take to the field this week as the 2013 high school football season nears its end. The week’s matchups include one intra-county clash amid three home games.

Demopolis (5-2) vs. Satsuma (2-5)

The Tigers find themselves in an odd position in terms of the region standings. Should they lose one of their two remaining region contests, they likely fall into a three-way tie with Greenville and Selma for third place in Class 5A, Region 3. That could ultimately leave Demopolis on the outside looking in come postseason play in November. So DHS has scarcely had more motivation than it does now to find the high level of play it has been missing most of the season and force its way into the playoff picture for Class 5A. Add in the fact that it is Homecoming and the Tigers should have plenty of motivation to handle their business properly.

Linden (5-2) vs. John Essex (0-7)

The Patriots will celebrate Homecoming Friday night when they host John Essex. For Linden, this one will be about getting some reps and getting starters out of the game. For Essex, it is about survival. The Hornets are down to 11 players and are determined to keep everyone intact and finish what they started this season.

A.L. Johnson (5-2) vs. McIntosh (1-6)

ALJ currently finds itself in a three-way tie with Marengo and Fruitdale for the No. 3 seed in Class 1A, Region 1. The Eagles can ill afford a stumble against an athletic, but hapless McIntosh team here in week eight. ALJ needs to get the win and do it handily enough to rest some starters this week in view of next week’s crucial showdown with rival Marengo. If everything sets up right for that game, it could be about drawing Autaugaville in the first round rather than having to face Maplesville.

Marengo (4-3) vs. J.U. Blacksher (1-6)

Marengo has dropped two in a row. If this Panther team has turned the corner the way most believe it has, then MHS will lay a merciless pounding on Blacksher Friday night. We expect that is exactly what is going to happen as the Panthers get ready for a week nine showdown with their archrivals from Thomaston.

Sweet Water (5-2) @ Choctaw County (2-5)

Choctaw County has athletes, but it is still very young under first-year head coach Rico McCann. And this week’s draw of a Sweet Water Bulldog team with a purpose is very unfavorable for a CCHS squad that has lost five in a row. Look for Sweet Water to try to build an early lead and get its starters off the field in view of next week’s date with Mobile Christian.

Marengo Academy (7-0) @ Sparta Academy (2-5)

The Longhorns lost to Sparta a season ago. We expect that has not been forgotten by the MA faithful. Marengo has outscored opponents 300-46 this year and may look to hang 50 on the board in short order when they visit Evergreen tonight.