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Panthers return to 0-0 mentaility in faceoff with Millry

The 2016 regular season marks the Georgiana Panthers’ best effort since 1994.

But according to Georgiana head football coach Ezell Powell, none of that matters for the postseason journey that lies ahead.

“The records right now are 0-0,” Powell said. “The goal right now is to go 5-0, and the only way to do that is to be 1-0.  We have to take care of this first one in order to take steps toward our goal.”

This week’s opponent is the 4-6 Millry Wildcats, the fourth seed of Class 1A Region 1 behind Linden, Sweet Water and Marengo.

And though the Wildcats have seen their share of ups and downs throughout this season, Powell said that the 0-0 mentality goes both ways.

“We look at it just that way—everybody’s the same,” Powell added.

“If you’re in the playoffs, you’ve done something well enough to get there.  So we know they have some very good football players who play hard on defense, and we can’t take anyone lightly.”

Fortunately for the Panthers, a well-timed bye week has given the Panthers ample time to iron out the fundamentals, and to also briefly focus on the mental half of Friday nights—specifically, the importance of execution.

“You’ve got to be mentally focused and understand the adjustments that people are going to make against you, and how to still execute what you’re going to do,” Powell said.

“For us, it’s all about being consistent at executing what you do, because we’ve gotten this far with it.  And at this point in the season, there’s not a whole lot new to put in for Friday night. You’re going to get down to what you do, and the team that can execute what they do better is the team that will move on.”

And though execution is an important focal point, it’s only half of the battle.

“For us defensively we’ve got to understand what their plan of attack is, and get to the football and do a great job of tackling,” Powell said.

“Offensively, we’ve just got to know that what we’ll see from them is no different from what we’ve seen all year long.  The difference is the players in the positions from one side to another.

“When you’re at this point, just like any other point in the season, the team that blocks the best and tackles the best will be the team to move on.”