Ragland vs. Donoho

Donoho coach Shannon Felder has revealed a primary reason for his Falcons opening its season 6-0: Fundamentals. As Felder and his team prepare to face Ragland (5-1) on Friday in a key region game, it is those core elements he plans to rely upon the most. With Ragland's speed and size, the Falcons realize the challenge facing them on Friday.

"Our strategy is to try not to make many mistakes, tackle them, move the ball on offense, and understand that we have to be patient," said Felder.

"They have a good defense, and we have to take what they give us and take our opportunities along the way to score a few points."

Scoring a few points shouldn't be much of a problem for the Donoho offense if they maintain their typical offensive intensity. The Falcons have averaged 36 points per game this season.

Leading the way on the Falcons' offense will likely be Chase Edwards and Scott McMichaels at running back. Joseph Hurt will start under center on Donoho's Wing-T offense and plans to contribute to that fundamentally-sound reputation.

More of a utility player for the Falcons, Jered Morse will likely start at fullback on Friday but may change over to wingback, tight end, or tailback at any point in the game.

"[Morse is] just a good football player. He plays a little bit of everything," said Felder.

Felder prides himself in his team's defense, not only in its ability to hold off opponents' scoring — the Donoho defense has allowed only 47 points in its previous six games, averaging 7.8 per game — but also its formation versatility. At any point in a game, Felder may call a 4-3, 3-4 or 4-4 defense.

Felder is also relying on a few of his newcomers this season to make an impact versus Ragland. Robert Barney, Trey Chandler and Norris Stokes are expected to influence the Falcons' fuel on Friday.

Felder and his Donoho team have had one primary goal this season, to keep getting better every time they take the field.

"I never have a win-loss goal," said Felder. "I just want to make sure that the players get a little better every week, and toward the end of the season and playoff time, we're playing our best football. We just want to work to get better every week. If you do that, winning will take care of itself."

With the leadership on his team and the contributions each of his players is making, Felder has high hopes they can continue to do just that as the season progresses. To guarantee that, however, he is sure to continue to stress the fundamentals. While he continues to stress those basics throughout each week, each Monday practice is spent specifically on the rudimentary elements of the game.

Even with his team's 6-0 record, Felder is still not completely satisfied with the improvements his team has made, but if they continue to improve as they have in each game thus far, come playoff time, look for Donoho as a favorite heading into the post season.

Kickoff is scheduled for 7pm in Ragland, home of the Purple Devils.

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