PLYMOUTH — A season-ending win at NorthWood is a good start headed to the playoffs for Plymouth’s Rockies.
“It’s a great win for us, we really haven’t done that very often,” said Plymouth’s head football coach John Barron. “There haven’t been a lot of teams in the history of the school to go over there and win. Especially the way we did it.”
Down 14 points, the Rockies had the game’s last three scores to take the win in the final minutes.
“This team has a lot of toughness — a lot of mental toughness,” said Barron. “We didn’t panic, we didn’t flinch.”
Missing some key parts took a first half of adjustment.
“Defensively I think we missed Vincente (Vasquez — out for the NorthWood game),” said Barron. “He’s the key for us. He’s the physical and vocal leader. Our safeties were playing soft early but we haven’t played a team that runs triple (option) like they do. They did some things to extend possessions that I think had us frustrated.”
“Their defensive front did some things that we haven’t seen. Their guards were slanting and turning out which we haven’t seen before.”
This week’s opponent — South Bend Riley (5-4) — has some things that the Rockies have seen before.
“Defensively they’re the same as us,” said Barron. “They run a 3-4 with some 50 looks. Their perimeter people are really good. They are very active on defense.”
“Offensively everything runs through their quarterback — Daigien Morgan,” said Barron. “They run a two-tight end pistol with two very big tight ends, but everything runs through him. Their running back — Thomas Capers — was one of the fastest guys in the state in the 100. They both have about 800 yards rushing but everything goes through Morgan. He’s a Division I athlete.”
“They are really similar to us. They want to spread you out and run the ball, we want to spread you out and run the ball.”
Losses to top ten ranked Whiteland, Northridge and Penn are really the only blemishes on the Riley schedule — a team that also shut out South Bend Adams and Mishawaka Marian.
“This time of year it’s really up to the players and how much they want to win,” said Barron. “If you have that you won’t get beat. This is a tough football team and we’re playing at home. We have some good things going.”