Eagles search for first region win against Autauga Academy

Published 5:21 pm Tuesday, September 2, 2014

2013’s meeting between the Fort Dale Academy Eagles and the Autauga Academy Generals was a veritable shootout, with the Eagles emerging from the dust victorious in a narrow 55-54 victory.

And though Fort Dale’s season opener would suggest that the team is still capable of lighting up the scoreboard, head coach James “Speed” Sampley said that it’s going to take a lot more than offense to come out on top again this Friday.

“We got off to a good start, but we have to get better,” Sampley told his team Friday night.

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“The level of competition over the next two weeks is going to get tougher, so we’re going to have to be prepared for that.”

Though Fort Dale’s reunion with Autauga has all of the potential to be another shootout, given the Eagles’ 59-6 win last Friday over first-time opponent Evangel Christian Academy, the Generals have already had their share of close calls this season with a narrow 20-21 loss in their own season opener to the Escambia Academy Cougars.

Even more interesting is that the Cougars will serve as the Eagles’ next opponent on September 12, proving that the next two weeks of region games will be crucial to determining how the remainder of the season plays out.

As Sampley often preaches to his team, each week is a building block toward constructing a successful postseason and an opportunity to improve.

“You want to build some momentum going into the playoffs, for sure,” Sampley said.

“The only way you’re going to be successful in the playoffs is if you get better as the year goes on.  We want to get better through the months of September and October so that we’ll be ready to play in November.”