Eagles look to regroup against Hooper

Published 6:10 pm Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Fort Dale Eagles suffered their first loss of the season last week against the Pike Liberal Arts Patriots.

Now they must rebound on the road against Hooper Academy.

“Hooper has a new coach and a new offense,” said head coach James Sampley. “They run the spread, and they throw it everywhere.”

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One of Hooper’s surprise weapons this season is their kicker.

“They’ve got a kicker from somewhere that can really kick,” Sampley said. “On film, he’s kicking it out of the back of the endzone on kickoffs.”

“They also attempted a 53-yard field goal last week,” he continued. “He didn’t make it, but just the fact that they put him out there to attempt it says something.”

He also serves as the punter, so field position will be a crucial element of Friday night’s game.

Sampley said minimizing mistakes is a big point of emphasis during practice this week.

One problem is that the Eagles had problems with 10 quarterback-center exchanges.

“That’s like throwing away 10 plays,” he said. “We had over 100 yards in penalties. We started nearly every drive first and 15.”

“We’re working on all the little things,” he said. “Maybe that’ll help take care of the big things.”

The game against Hooper is another region game for FDA, and a win would be important for the Eagles.

“We’ve got to win this one,” Sampley said. “They’re all important, especially since we lost one now.”

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. against Hooper in Hope Hull.