After dropping its second region game in three tries this season, the Wetumpka football team enters homecoming week with their backs against the wall.
Wetumpka is currently 3-4 this season with a 1-2 record in Class 6A, Region 3 play. The Indians are hosting Chilton County (2-4, 0-3) in region play this Friday night at 7 p.m at the City of Wetumpka Sports Complex Stadium.
The game will serve as homecoming for the Indians, but will also serve as a must-win situation as Wetumpka tries to keep its postseason hopes alive. Head coach Tim Perry knows the situation his team is in, and he believes his team will pull through.
“The ones that I’ve talked to are ready to go to work and ready to get back not he field and get things right,” Perry said of his team. “That’s kind of been their approach this whole season and they’ve been great about bouncing back. … They’ve always responded in a positive way and met the challenges, so I’m sure they’re going to meet this challenge. We have no doubt that they’ll prepare with a sense of urgency.”
Chilton County has not won a region game yet this year, but the Tigers are certainly no easy win.
The Tigers have found plenty of success on the offensive side of the ball this year. They are averaging 20.2 points per game and despite being held under 13 points in three games, they have scored 40 or more in two games while adding 21 in another.
They’re coming off a region loss to Helena last week, 48-40.
“They’re very athletic and very much improved since last year even thought their record doesn’t reflect that,” Perry said. “It’s obvious when you watch film that they’re playing at a high level. They’ve lost some very close games and they’ve been right in those games until the very end. They have a lot of starters back on the offensive line so they’ve been able to control the line of scrimmage in most of their games.”
On the flip side of that, Wetumpka’s defense has been one of the positives of the Indians’ season this year. Wetumpka allows only 21.1 points per game, but has only allowed over over 20 points twice this year.
The Indians have held five of their seven opponents under 20 points.
Last week, however, they allowed a season-high 41 points to Pelham in a region loss.
Perry credits Pelham’s offensive scheme for where things went wrong for Wetumpka. The challenge that Pelham presented was being a triple-option team that has added the spread into its offense.
This week, Wetumpka’s defense should match up better with Chilton County.
“You never know from week to week, but we are going to try to prepare them the best we can,” Perry said. “We are going to try and get them in the right positions and show them as much as we can and get a game plan together. Hopefully by the end of the week, we know the game plan and go out there and execute it.”
Wetumpka’s offense, which faltered early in the season, as seen some improvements as the season as progressed. The Indians have scored 28 points in back-to-back weeks, but then only scored 14 points against Pelham last week.
Despite only scoring 14 last week, the Indians still had over 400 yards of offense, they just turned the ball over too many times.
“We just have to keep improving offensively like we have been,” Perry said. “We still need to get some consistency in some areas, like our passing game, but our focus is on improving our execution on offense. We have to work hard and eliminate turnovers.”