Thursday, October 20, 2011
County clash Friday
By BARRY BURLESON
It will be history in the making Friday night under the lights.
For what is believed to be the first time ever, public and private schools in Marshall County will collide in a varsity football game. Marshall Academy hosts Potts Camp with a 7 p.m. kickoff at Patriot Field.
The first-year football rivalry involves friends, families, co-workers, church members and other close relationships on opposite sides.
Potts Camp coach Shane Stone is a 1990 graduate of MA. Marshall coach Barrett Donahoe, who is from Crystal Springs in south Mississippi, is in his first season with the Patriots.
“I told Coach Donahoe, it will be awfully strange standing on the other side of the football field at Marshall,” Stone said. “It will be weird.”
As a junior, Stone played on a Patriot team that lost in the state championship game to Wilkinson Christian.
It is his first time back to his alma mater as a coach.
“It’s a good game for the community – for everyone to get excited about,” Coach Stone said. “It will be a fun football game, and hopefully everyone will come out and support the teams, and maybe we can keep it going in the future.”
Donahoe agreed about the game’s significance.
“It’s being termed historical,” Donahoe said. “I’ve heard enough about this game the past couple of weeks to understand the importance of it. I know it will be an exciting night and a good night for Marshall County.”
The Patriots, a Class AA member of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools, enters with a 7-1 record. The Cardinals, a Class 2A member of the Mississippi High School Activities Association, stand at 6-3.
“Marshall has a lot more experience under their belt,” said Stone, who began the Potts Camp program in 2009.
“They’re so versatile, even with the small number of kids. They can run it if they need to and they can throw it if they need to. They have some very good athletes.”
Donahoe has high praise for his Friday night opponent, too.
“It is very obvious how talented this Potts Camp football team is,” he said. “They’re big up front; they’re physical; and their skill players are very good.
“We competed against them in seven-on-seven this summer, and it was very evenly matched.
“They will come in here with a lot of passion. It will be a very intense matchup.”
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