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DHS Tigers survive encounter with Choctaw

Friday night was an all around bad night for the DHS Tigers but even with the 11 penalties, seven punts, three injuries, four turnovers and 171 yards of total offense, the Tigers survived with a 14-12 first round playoff victory over the Choctaw County Tigers and move ahead, one game closer to Birmingham.

And Tigers head coach Doug Goodwin felt that his team, despite the poor blocking in the first half, played like champions considering what they were up against.

Friday night’s game was plagued with a wide range of mistakes for the Tigers with breakdowns on both sides of the ball. "We had breakdowns on offense, kicking game and defense. It wasn’t just one faze of the game it was a little bit of everything," Goodwin said.

Offensively the Tigers lacked in protection on the offensive line with numerous missed blocks throughout the first half of play. "The first half we didn’t block anybody," Goodwin said.

But once the necessary corrections were made at the half, Goodwin was pleased with his team’s second half performance. "I thought as poorly as we run blocked in the first half, we did really well in the second half which allowed us to score on the ground," Goodwin said.

To make things worse Friday night, the Tigers were bombed with 11 penalties for 63 yards and blew up opportunity after opportunity. "We hurt ourselves with penalties throughout the first half. We had big plays called back which killed drives," Goodwin said.

With the Tigers not being able to move the ball on the ground throughout much of the first half, the kicking team had to put in a little overtime this week. Punting has been something that the DHS Tigers have had the pleasure of avoiding throughout most of the 2003 season but Friday night it was a different story.

The Tigers punted the football seven times Friday night, which is more than they have had to punt all season. Quarterback Devin Goodwin does all the punting for the Tigers and Friday night his leg got more exercise that his throwing arm.

While the offense spent its time going three-and-out, the Tigers defense was forced to step it up a notch.

The Tigers defense spent 25:33 on the field Friday night only giving up 61-total rushing yards and one touchdown. "I thought our defense played really well with the exception of one series," Goodwin said.

But defensive coordinator Freddie Lawrence takes full responsibility for that one series. "It was my fault, I called the wrong play," Lawrence said.

But all of that is in the past and it’s now a new week at DHS with new problems. The Opp Bobcats come to town Friday night and bring with them a highly talented running game that’s loaded with both speed and size.

The Bobcats are known to run the option with their junior running back Brock Kelley. Kelley, a 6’1" 220lb fullback, along with quarterback Daniel Coleman are in complete harmony when it comes to the Opp option. But the Tigers have other, more important, issues on their minds.

With every game this late into the season the injury reports seem to get longer and longer and Friday night the Tigers added a three new injuries to their list.

"After 11 games your bound to be banged up,’ Goodwin said.