Eagles face yet another Top 10 opponent in Clarke Prep
For the third time in four weeks, the No.10 Fort Dale Eagles will square off against a Top 10 team in the No.8 Clarke Prep Gators.
“Seems like we're playing a Top 10 team every week,” Fort Dale head coach James “Speed” Sampley said.
And that's the good news.
The bad new is that the Eagles are coming off a 47-0 shutout loss to the No. 2 Faith Rams in which the Eagles turned the ball over eight times.
“If I'm Clarke Prep, I'm licking my chops getting ready to play us,” Sampley said following Friday's loss.
This week, Sampley said he has focused on getting his team refocused on the task ahead: taking care of region games.
“We didn't play very well and we self-destructed,” Sampley said about the Faith game. “But (our players) know and they understand the importance of each region game.”
Sampley said Clarke Prep, who lost to Faith in Week 2 27-14, is a good team who will present a challenge for the Eagles.
“They are just solid,” Sampley said. “They'll eat up clock and run it right at you.”
Eliminating costly mistakes has also been a key focus for the Eagles this week and Sampley knows his team cannot afford to make the same mistakes they made Friday night.
“We have to not turn the ball over,” Sampley said. “When you turn it over eight times, almost anybody can beat you.”
Taking care of the ball in the shadow of their own end zone is also something Sampley said the Eagles must do.
“When you don't have to take the ball but 20 yards to score, it makes it a whole lot easier,” Sampley said referring to Friday's loss against Faith.
Kickoff for Friday's game at Clarke Prep is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.