OCS, Union meet in Thursday showdown
Eagles coach expects battle in the trenches
When Steven Fitzhugh sat down and looked at the schedule he assembled in the spring, one date in particular stood out.
That date is here.
Ouachita Christian hits the road this week to take on the Farmers of Union Parish in a rare Thursday night game at “Doc” Elliot Stadium.
Fitzhugh anticipates an old-fashioned donnybrook that will come down to play at the line of scrimmage.
“This will be a great gauge to see where we’re at. There’s no secret to what they do,” Fitzhugh said. “It comes down to who can be the most physical on both sides of the ball.”
The OCS running game was firing on all cylinders in a 42-7 win over Lakeside. Ahkeem Henderson rushed for 112 yards and a touchdown, while Josh Pennebaker pitched in another 80 on the ground.
Fitzhugh said the key to the Eagles’ resurgent rushing attack has been the continued improvement of the offensive line.
OCS quarterback Quin Graves was his normal efficient self, completing 14 of his 28 passes and directing a balanced attack that produced 210 yards on the ground and 252 in the air.
“His experience and ability to read defenses is great. He’s been in the fire for two years, and there’s no substitute for that,” Fitzhugh said.
Lakeside only put 83 yards of total offense up on the Eagles, but Union Parish presents a more formidable challenge.
Despite losing Jacob Fossier to an injury, the Farmers haven’t missed a beat since plugging Desmond Turner in at running back.
Quarterback Jamarius Williams is always a threat to turn the corner behind a young, but solid offensive line in Union Parish’s option attack.
“He’s another athletic quarterback that’s done damage for them over the years,” Fitzhugh said. “Defensively, we’ve got to play that assignment football and do our job.”
OCS has rolled through the early portion of the season, but one area that’s cause for concern is the special teams. The Eagles have given up kickoff returns for touchdowns in two of their last three games.
Fixing the kick coverage is one of Fitzhugh’s priorities this week — especially against a team like Union Parish with so many athletes at the skill positions.
“There’s been some big plays on special teams go our way and some that didn’t,” Fitzhugh said.
“We’ve just got to make sure each person out there does their job and executes their assignment.”
Kickoff from Farmerville is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Ocs 42 Farmerville 20
42 might be ambitious.
Regardless of the outcome, it will be a great learning experience for the Farmerville kids