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Archrivals to Clash in Key Contest

Posted Thursday, September 10, 2009 by Shannon Allen

Archrivals to clash in key contest


Published September 10, 2009

New Albertville head football coach Joel Poole knows how to defeat Boaz, as he guided his former school, Madison County, to a victory over the Pirates in 2008.

Friday night, he will try to experience similar success with the Aggies, who haven’t beaten their archrival since 2002.

Albertville will play host to Boaz for a 7 o’clock kickoff in Class 5A, Region 7 action.

Boaz improved to 1-1 overall and 1-0 in the region standings by downing Madison County 33-14 in week two.

The Aggies are 1-1, 0-1. They fell to Southside 28-24 in their region opener.

“I hope they’re all coming in ready to get after it,” Poole said of the Aggies.

“I’ve heard a lot about the rivalry since I’ve gotten here. I hope we all get up to play it.”

Boaz senior Drew Phillips rushed for 283 yards and two touchdowns against the Aggies in 2008. He scored the game-winning touchdown with 13.6 seconds left.

“You have to try to stop Drew and try not to get beat on the deep pass, and that’s a major, tall order,” Poole said.

“I think everybody in the whole region would say the same thing about them. You have to try to stop what they do best, and that’s what we’re going to be working on.”

Poole said the Aggie defense will have to send a lot of players to the football and gang tackle if it hopes to contain Phillips, who had runs of 25, 31, 31, 19, 28 and 15 yards in last season’s game.

“They threw the ball pretty well last week,” he said. “No. 15 (Ethan Baker) is a pretty good receiver, and so is (No.) 10 (Collin Langley). I’ve also been impressed with their offensive front.”

Boaz sometimes utilizes Phillips in the Wildcat formation, which Albertville is preparing to see.

“Phillips throws well, and he’s a good quarterback in his own right,” Poole said.

“We’ve got to be prepared for everything, but they didn’t even run the Wildcat last week. We’ll have to wait and see what they’re going to do, because they keep you guessing.

“They’re always well coached and get after you.”

Poole said the Aggies must eliminate their mistakes to give themselves a better opportunity to succeed Friday.

The Aggies have focused on reducing penalties, bad snaps and dropped passes this week.

A holding penalty negated a touchdown on the Aggies’ first play from scrimmage against Southside, and they also dropped a touchdown pass on their final drive.

“Offensively, we have to continue to grow and get better at what we’re doing,” Poole said.

“Defensively, some injuries have kind of got us on the ropes a little bit, and we’re trying to deal with those too.”

Poole praised running back Tyree Roberts, receivers T.J. Vines and Dareon Thompson and linebackers Addison Powell and Taylor Hawkins for their performances in the Southside game.

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