Demons look to rebound from last week’s setback

Published 8:05 am Friday, September 9, 2016

Franklinton’s Demons head to Amite tonight to face the Warriors in week two of the Louisiana high school football season.

Franklinton comes into tonight’s match-up after falling to Covington, 49-13, in last week’s opener.

“Amite, as far as talent, is going to be the most talented team we play all year. Top to bottom, they have skill players all over the place,” Franklinton coach Stephen Burris said. “We’re going to have to do a good job of being fundamentally sound and executing our scheme. We’re not going to out-athlete them.”

Last week’s game was a struggle for the Demons. The offense scored just seven points over the first three quarters. Those came on the second play of the game.

The defense allowed 245 yards passing and 203 rushing.

“We’ve got some things to improve at,” Burris said. “We’ve got inexperience at different positions. They haven’t played a lot. Hopefully things will start hitting home. Hopefully mistakes won’t happen as often as they are.”

Offensively last week, Tahj Magee threw for 125 yards. He also ran for 128 yards and two touchdowns.

Michael Martin finished with 58 rushing yards and he had a catch for 2 yards.

Six different players had at least one catch. Dijimon Jenkins recorded four receptions for 38 yards. Rakerian Conerly had two catches for 15 yards. Lagarian Bell (15 yards), Marcus Conerly (43) and Wyatt Hensley (12) all had one catch.

Defensively, Burris said the unit is getting better, but they’re just not there yet. He said the team is not ‘gap sound’ at the moment.

“When you’re not gap sound, there are wide open holes. Until that happens, we’re going to struggle,” Burris said.

Chandler Scott led the Demons with 12 tackles last week. Jeremy Richardson recovered a fumble.

Amite is also 0-1. The Warriors had to forfeit last week’s opener because of a fight that occurred at the end of their quarterfinal playoff game last season against Bogalusa.

Amite coach Zephaniah Powell said this is their opening week and that they’re playing against a very good opponent.

“I know they have a coaching staff change, a new head coach, but they are going to be athletic and very sound,” Powell said. “The score (against Covington) doesn’t indicate how good this team is. Covington has a lot of seniors back. For us, we’ve got to get over the hurdle of playing a complete game against Franklinton. The last four to five years, Franklinton has kind of manhandled us.”

The teams have played every year since 2012 and Franklinton has won all four contests. The last three have been by at least 26 points. The 2012 game was a 34-28 win for FHS. Last year’s game was a 40-12 Franklinton victory.

When asked about this year’s team, Powell said the coaches are very excited about the experience they have coming back in their senior class.

“Our quarterback Elijah Walker is a senior,” Powell said. “He’s a leader on and off the field. He’s blessed to throw to a senior in Devonta Smith. (Walker) is blessed to be able to handoff to another senior Milton Sanders.

“From the offensive prospective, we’re excited about those three guys. Defensively, we’re excited about defensive end Rodney Sopsher and defensive back Myron Dokes.”

Last season, Walker passed for 1,800 yards and 40 touchdowns. Smith had more than 1,000 receiving yards, with 24 touchdowns.

Sanders, who played sparingly last season, is new to the starting lineup this year.

Sopsher played about half of the season last year because of foot surgery.

Dokes enters the season with 20 interceptions in his career. He picked off two passes in Amite’s jamboree game against Ponchatoula two weeks ago.