Monday, Oct 20, 2014

Playoffs on the line


Published:

It's pretty simple for the Sebring football team. A win in tonight's Class 6A-District 11 game against Lake Gibson punches the Blue Streaks' ticket to the state playoffs as the district runner-up.

Sebring comes into tonight's contest with a 5-3 overall record and 1-1 in district play, while Lake Gibson is 5-2, 1-1.

"Lake Gibson is a very good team," said Sebring coach LaVaar Scott. "They have a four-year starter at quarterback and they do a lot of different things in the passing game.

"They run a spread offense and throw the ball all over the field and our pass defense is going to be tested."

The Blue Streaks were banged up heading into last week's 28-7 loss to Naples Lely and several more players were lost to injury in the physical game.

"We're hurting at a number of positions," Scott said. "We're hoping several of our guys are going to be ready to play, but we won't know until game time and if they don't then some other guys have to step up.

The Braves run a 4-3 on defense, but like most teams, will bring a number of players close to the line of scrimmage to take away the potent Sebring rushing attack.

"Most teams are stacking the line of scrimmage against us and forcing us to throw," Scott said. "We have to be able to throw the ball some because that opens up our running game."

Lake Gibson eased past Largo by a score of 28-14 last week and the Braves lost to District 11 leader Winter Haven by a score of 35-30.

Sebring lost to Winter Haven by a score of 43-0.

A key to a Blue Streak victory is to be able to run the ball effectively and not turn it over.

"We have to be able to move the chains and pick up first downs," Scott said. "We can't have a lot of three-and-outs because that leaves our defense on the field too long and they get worn down.

"Lake Gibson can score quickly and we want to control the ball, shorten the game and keep their offense off the field."

Sebring has had a good week of practice and the players know what's at stake in tonight's district clash.

"Our guys know this is a big game," Scott said. Win and we're in the playoffs, lose and we're out. They know Lake Gibson is a good football team because they've seen them on film.

"If we don't make mistakes and get some breaks go our way we could have some success."

The game is set to kickoff at 8 tonight at Firemen's Field. Tonight is also band appreciation night.

mpinson@highlandstoday.com

863-386-5837

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