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Greenville back on the road in search of region win

Greenville High School senior Ja’Quan Lewis has provided the Tigers’ a spark as a change-of-pace quarterback. Lewis and the Tigers travel to face the Alabama Christian Eagles Friday night. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. (Advocate Staff/Andy Brown)

Greenville High School senior Ja’Quan Lewis has provided the Tigers’ a spark as a change-of-pace quarterback. Lewis and the Tigers travel to face the Alabama Christian Eagles Friday night. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. (Advocate Staff/Andy Brown)

The Greenville Tigers are on the road for the third consecutive week as the team returns to region play to face the Alabama Christian Eagles.

The Eagles, who sit 0-3 in region play, have faced their share of struggles on offense.  The team succumbed to back-to-back shutouts at the hands of Rehobeth and Booker T. Washington, and was handed a 49-7 loss courtesy of Charles Henderson.

Since 2000, Alabama Christian is 0-42 when scoring under 10 points.  Fortunately, Greenville’s top-tier defense seems tailor suited to the task, but defense isn’t the only focus for Josh McLendon, Greenville’s head football coach.

“We approach every week the same,” McLendon said. “We’re going to go out there and play hard on all three phases of the game.  Hopefully defense plays well, and offense plays well also, and we follow that up with good special teams work.

“We want to make sure that we’re doing everything that we’re supposed to do in all three phases of the game.  Defense is a strong suit, but we want to make sure those other two are right there with it.”

Last week’s efforts seem to corroborate the claim, as the Tigers’ offense sprung to life after a dragging first half against the Georgiana Panthers.

Surprise backup quarterback Ja’Quan Lewis proved key to the Tigers’ success, particularly in the red zone.

“He’s very athletic.  He’s got good speed.  And, just more than anything, it’s a change of pace for the defense,” McLendon said.

“He’s doing a good job for us, and we’re keeping it limited for him.  But he’s done a good job of what we asked him to do.”

The undefeated Greenville Tigers currently share the top spot with Eufaula at the head of Class 5A, Region 2, and McLendon said that the key to remaining there is simple.

“You just have to keep doing what you’ve been doing the past five weeks,” McLendon said.

“You’ve just got to continue to focus on the little things — the basic fundamentals — and we’re just going to keep focusing on what got us here.  Obviously, if it weren’t working, we wouldn’t be 5-0.

“So we’re going to focus on what we’ve done the past five weeks and just try to get better at it.”

The Tigers travel to face the Alabama Christian Eagles Friday night.  Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.