PREVIEW: Pittsburg + Henderson Each Eye 3-0 Starts
Pittsburg Pirates (2-0)
Henderson Lions (2-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Lion Stadium, Henderson
- Pittsburg: Brad Baca
- Henderson: Phil Castles
- Pittsburg: vs. Paris, Sept. 22
- Henderson: at Pine Tree, Sept. 22
- WR/DB Keontae Burns, Jr., 6-3, 175 (13 catches, 170 yards, 2 TDs; 3 carries, 28 yards, 0 TDs; 18 tackles, 1 for loss, 1 INT, 4 PBUs)
- QB Jaylon Jimmerson, Jr., 5-11, 180 (28 of 44, 301 yards, 4 TDs, 1 INT; 23 carries, 169 yards, 3 TDs)
- RB Jordan Turner, Jr., 5-9, 193 (43 carries, 215 yards, 1 TD)
- DL Cody Jones, Sr., 6-2, 185 (27 tackles, 6 for loss, 2 sacks, 8 QB pressures)
- DB Braydon Pyron, Jr., 5-7, 140 (16 tackles, 2 INTs, 3 PBUs)
- LB Mason Monts, Jr., 5-10, 175 (21 tackles, 1 for loss, 1 QB pressure, 1 PBU)
- LB Martae Criss, Sr., 5-9, 160 (18 tackles, 2 for loss)
- LB Camryn Edney, Jr., 6-0, 200 (16 tackles, 2 for loss)
- QB Trae Hall, Sr., 6-3, 185 (12 of 17, 138 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs; 24 carries, 109 yards, 3 TDs)
- LB Garrett Lybrand, Sr., 6-2, 200 (23 tackles, 4 for loss, 4 QB pressures)
- RB D.Q. Murphy, Sr., 5-8, 180 (35 carries, 170 yards, 0 TDs)
- DL De'Braylon Garrett, Sr. (14 tackles, 4 for loss, 3 sacks, 6 QB pressures)
- LB Ty Blanton, Sr., 6-2, 190 (11 tackles, 2 for loss, 2 QB pressures, 2 INTs, 2 defensive TDs)
- RB Lynn Freeney, Sr., 5-11, 180 (10 carries, 82 yards, 1 TD)
- WR/DB Keshoyn Alexander, Jr., 5-8, 165 (1 catch, 6 yards, 0 TDs; 3 carries, 16 yards, 1 TD; 12 tackles, 1 INT, 2 PBUs)
- LB Brady Odom, Soph. (22 tackles, 2 for loss, 1 sack, 1 QB pressure)
Just the facts
- Henderson and Pittsburg met last season in Pittsburg, with Henderson coming away with a dominant 71-28 win.
- Both teams were 2-0 coming into last year's meeting.
- Pittsburg is averaging 30 points and 362.5 yards through two games -- 212 rushing and 150.5 passing.
- The Pirates' margin of victory in their first games has been five and four points, respectively.
- Pittsburg closes non-district with games against Paris and Tatum the next two weeks.
- Henderson is averaging 28.5 points and 278 yards through two games -- 209 rushing and 69 passing.
- The Lions' defense has allowed a total of 20 points so far this season.
- Henderson concludes non-district next week at Pine Tree.
Key matchup: Pittsburg rushing attack vs. Henderson defensive front. The Pirates haven't exactly lit up the scoreboard in their first two games of the season, but Pittsburg has done one thing fairly well, and that's run the football. Coming into Friday's tussle at Henderson, Pittsburg is averaging 212 rushing yards per game. Most of the damage has been done by its dynamic duo in the backfield.
Junior quarterback Jaylon Jimmerson and junior running back Jordan Turner have given Pittsburg a boost in the running game in victories over Crandall and Pine Tree. Jimmerson, who's been solid as a passer as well, gives Pittsburg the added dimension of a dual-threat quarterback, while Turner is coming off a 134-yard effort last week.
The key for Henderson's defense will be to find a way to make Pittsburg one-dimensional on offense, which means the Lions must prevent Pittsburg from making waves with its ground game.
Henderson has been lights out on defense so far this season. The Lions shut out Atlanta, 36-0, in the season opener two weeks ago, and held Tatum's offense in check for the most part in last week's 21-20 victory. The foursome of lineman De'Braylon Garrett and linebackers Garrett Lybrand, Ty Blanton, and Brady Odom has performed exceptionally well in the early going.
Don't be surprised if: Friday's game is not decided until the fourth quarter. Both of Pittsburg's games have come down to the end, while Henderson had to hang on for dear life to secure last week's win over Tatum. Neither offense has found its groove yet, and if that continues to be the case this week, don't expect either team to run away and hide early in this one.