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Game Notes: Week 4

Published 1:05pm Friday, September 20, 2013

No. 5 Hartselle (3-0, 2-0) at Cullman (3-0, 2-0)

Series: Cullman leads 40-39-3

Last meeting: Hartselle won 21-14 in 2012

In the spotlight: Several Hartselle players were featured in the AHSAA spotlight for Week 3. D’Andre Mack (two catches for 105 yards and a touchdown), Waid Miller (17 tackles), Jorden Robinson (interception and 11 stops) and Riley Wiggins (38.1 punt avg.) were recognized by the AHSAA this week.

Recipe for success: Hartselle’s recipe for success might be old-fashioned, but it’s worked this season. They have played outstanding defense and great special teams. Wiggins kept Athens backed up the whole game last week, pinning the Eagles inside the 20-yard line six times. Then the starting defense led by Miller hasn’t allowed a touchdown yet. In fact, Hartselle’s entire defense has only given up one touchdown all season. The other three touchdowns were scored on Hartselle were due to special teams miscues. The defense will need to continue to keep it up to help along the inexperience offense.

Ailing Tigers: One of the reasons why Hartselle has been so inexperienced on offense is due to injuries this season. Last week, Hartselle was without its top two running backs, Masio Stover and Mack, due to injuries. Stover will not be back for several weeks, but Mack could return if the doctors cleared him to play. The offense only had two returning starters coming into the season. Hartselle will need some of the younger guys to step up to take their roles while they get healthy.

No. 11 Falkville (3-0, 3-0) at Meek (1-2, 1-1)

Series: Falkville leads 18-5

Last meeting: Falkville won 16-6 in 2012

Super Sullivan: Ryan Sullivan was responsible for six touchdowns last week in the Blue Devils’ 49-6 win over Appalachian. So far this season, he has six passing touchdowns and six rushing touchdowns. He’s also yet to thrown an interception this season. He will need to continue that production as the schedule gets tougher with tonight’s game at Meek.

One of the top teams: Falkville is one of the top teams in scoring offense and scoring defense. The Blue Devils rank third in scoring offense with 55.7 points per game. Calera and Maplesville are the only teams scoring more points. Falkville is tied for second in scoring defense allowing two points per game. Muscle Shoals is the only team in the AHSAA not to allow a point. Falkville also ranks second in point differential, winning games by an average of 53.7 points per game.

Heatbreak for Tigers: Meek fell to Sumiton Christian 25-24 last week in heartbreaking fashion. Even though Meek is 1-2, expect them to give Falkville a tough game.

Brewer (1-2, 1-1) at Arab (0-3, 0-2)

Series: Arab leads 21-10

Last meeting: Arab won 38-0 in 2012

Rebounding: Brewer got a big win in region play over Boaz in Week 2, but they didn’t follow it up as well as they would have liked against Etowah. The Blue Devils outclassed the Patriots en route to a 37-7 win. How will the Patriots respond against rival Arab?

Struggles for the Knights: Arab has lost three tough games to start the season. They lost to Albertville, Scottsboro and Fort Payne and are looking for their first win. This is a key game for both teams. If Arab wins, they could gain some confidence heading into the non-region week to make a run in the second half of the season. If Brewer wins, it could be the catalyst for something special. They would be halfway to a playoff berth with a realistic chance of making the playoffs.

Priceville (2-1, 1-1) at Wilson (1-2, 1-1)

Series: Wilson leads 3-0

Last meeting: Wilson won 55-34 in 2012

Turnovers doom Bulldogs: Priceville knew it had a tall task with Brooks last week, but the one thing they didn’t expect to happen was to have a bad case of the turnover bug. The Bulldogs had seven turnovers in a loss to a strong Brooks team that has only allowed 26 points this season. Expect Priceville to have a little more ball security this week at Wilson.

Wilson’s tough road: Wilson’s 1-2 record is deceiving. This is a good football team that just played two of its toughest games right off the bat. They fell to Lauderdale County and Haleyville, who have a combined record of 5-1. The only loss was a dominant Madison Academy team. This is a big game for Priceville to show just how much they have improved from last year’s team.

Winston County (0-3, 0-2) at Danville (0-3, 0-2)

Series: Winton County leads 9-6

Last meeting: Winston County won 34-20 in 2012

Road weary: Danville started the season with three road games and struggled mightily with a very young football team. The Hawks have scored just 28 points in their first three games while allowing more than 30 points in each game.

Something’s gotta give: Danville and Winston County have both struggled to start the 2013 season. One team will get into the win column tonight. Can the Hawks step up their play to get that illusive first win?

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