Wildcats, Tigers to tangle Friday on gridiron

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Cassville looks to make statement in the Big 8 title race

In coach speak, the biggest game on the schedule is always the "next game."

Most coaches use a "look forward" approach, and such is the case for Cassville this week.

Already gone is the celebratory feel of Friday night's 35-0 win over McDonald County, and and the Wildcats (2-1, 2-0) have shifted their concentration for a bigger prize -- a win over Lamar.

"I like our emotion on both sides of the football against McDonald County," said Lance Parnell, Cassville coach. "But this is Big 8 football, and our boys know all about Lamar. We will have out hands full."

While Parnell has his team focused forward, he still remembers last season's 48-0 thrashing from the Tigers. Mother Nature must be a Wildcat fan, as she caused Monett's game with Lamar (3-0, 3-0) to be postponed until Saturday and, 
allowing Parnell and his staff a chance to see their next two opponents in person.

"Lamar still has a good team that is big and physical," Parnell said. "We will have to execute to win."

Lamar's defeated Monett 24-6, displaying that they still are a force to be reckoned with. However, the Wildcats will be far from over-matched.

"I like our O-line and their ability to match up with their D-line," Parnell said. "We have to win the battle upfront in this game. Their backs are big, and we will have to breakdown and make solid tackles."

Keys for Cassville

* Wrap up: Players like to make the big hit that draws the crowd's attention. Lamar's running backs are big and fast. The Wildcats have to wrap up and fly to the ball.

* Hold the ball: Cassville needs to move the chains and extend drives. They must keep Lamar's offense off the field.

* Spread them out: If Lamar has one weakness, it is in their secondary. Monett was able to exploit single coverage out wide. Look for Cassville to take a couple of shots deep to loosen the Tigers' defense.

Keys for Lamar

* Run, run, run, and then change it up by running some more: The Tigers rushed it 71 times against Monett on Saturday and averaged over 5 yards per carry. If Lamar gets more numbers like that against Cassville, it is hard not to envision a winning scenario.

* Be physical: Lamar wants to show Cassville what being tough is all about.

* Make Cassville predicable: The Tigers like their chances if Cassville is a one-dimensional offense.

Kickoff on Friday is set for 7 p.m.

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