Football is a game of four quarters and in order to win against good teams that is how you have to play. The 0-1 Adrian Maples can attest to this. At halftime of their game against the Carleton Airport Jets, the Maples were cruising and it looked like they were going to score an easy victory. Someone forgot to tell the Jets that as they stormed back and scored 19 straight points to take the lead. The Maples can’t have a lapse like this again if they want to win this week.
This week the Maples will host the 0-1 Fenton Tigers. The Tigers will bring a balanced attack to this game and Adrian will need to have a similar effort they had in the first half if they are going to shut them down. The Tigers in their first game against the Linden Eagles rushed for 105 yards on 25 carries. They were spread between 4 backs. They threw the ball 22 times, completed 12 of them for 212 yards.
An issue I saw from their first game was that they missed two extra points, but they did make a field goal. That is a similar problem that Adrian had in their first game. If these teams don’t figure this problem out by game time, this could be a difference maker in the outcome.
Defensively Adrian needs to do what they did in the first half and this time they need to finish the game with it. They didn’t have trouble stopping the pass against the Jets and that is what Fenton had a lot of success with. The running game did gash the Maples though and Fenton likes to use a few different backs, which could wear out the defense if they don’t shut it down early.
Offensively I would like to see the Maples run the ball more. They did have some success rushing for 123 yards on 23 carries, but if they can grind out some drives; this could help their defense rest. The Maples did show success with the pass, throwing for 159 yards, which is always a plus and having a balanced attack is a great way to keep the Tigers off balance. Then of course, figuring out the kicking game is a must for Adrian, because it was definitely a negative difference maker for them against the Jets.
These two teams did not play last year, so there is no history to look at. The game will be in Adrian, which gives the Maples an advantage. I think what happened to them last week will be something they build off of and I believe they will defeat the Fenton Tigers. I do think both teams will have success moving the ball and it looks like both defenses are pretty solid. I believe it will come down to whichever side gets more stops and the kicking game will definitely play a factor. My prediction is Adrian wins 20-14 and get back to .500.
This game will be played Thursday August 30th, at Adrian High School, located in Adrian, Michigan.