Oak Hill is coming off a breakout game from last Friday night. Taking out some early-season frustrations on the Eagles of Hebron Christian Academy, the Raiders knocked off their cross-county opponents 46-12.
Making it a 1-4 overall record on the season, it was back to business as usual for Oak Hill head coach Leroy Gregg and his players on Monday. Gregg said there was intensity on the practice field, but it was no different than any of the other weeks after a game.
“Our kids never quit working hard because we weren’t successful, as far as winning a ball game on Friday night is concerned.” Gregg said. “Our kids’ demeanor in practice was no different than it has been.”
If the win had given the Raiders a different swagger, that was stifled immediately by the unseasonably warm temperatures that greeted them on the practice turf.
“We were battling that 100-plus heat index yesterday,” Gregg said. “Boy we were battling. Our practice was productive, and we got a lot of the game plan put in. That’s what you’d like to get done on Mondays and polish on it Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.”
With summer-like heat blazing, it was enough to make anyone forget about Friday, whether it was a winning or losing night.
“There’s not a lot of excitement when the heat index is 108, and you’re towards the last week in September” Gregg said. “There’s excitement when they get through running that one mile of wind sprints we run on Monday and Tuesday.”
As for the Raiders in practice, they are trying to work on the flaws that were present, even in Friday night’s lop-sided affair.
“We’re trying to correct a few mistakes, and we’re trying to make our players better,” “Gregg said. “That’s what we do every week.”
Last week, the Raiders took a banged up team into their contest at Hebron, starting without three key players. Overall, the team came out of the match pretty healthy.
J.R. Wilbourne went down in Friday night’s game, but Gregg says that is the only injury of note from that contest.
“Other than that, we came out pretty healthy,” Gregg said of Friday night.
Reflecting on Friday night’s win, Gregg said there was one key to the game that led to success and that was “no turnovers.”
“We gave Leake 28 points the previous ball game,” Gregg said. “We just didn’t take care of the football.”
Offensively, the Raiders had their best game of the season, by far.
“We ran the ball real well, and we threw when we needed to throw it,” Gregg said. “We threw it successfully too.”
This week, the Raiders will be facing a 2-2 Carroll team, at home. The game, other than homecoming, will mark their first conference game of the season. According to what Gregg has seen of the Rebels, they are a fast group.
“They’ve got four boys faster than our fastest boy,” Gregg said. “They’ve got a really good quarterback. They run to the ball on defense.”
As good as that package sounds, Carroll has not been invincible this season. They are coming off a 48-27 loss to Winston Academy. They also fell to Winona Christian to start the season.
Between the two losses are a 43-0 win over Sharkey-Issaquena Academy and a 35-21 win over Immanuel Christian.