2017-10-11 / Sports

SHORT MEMORIES

Rockets host Northern Guilford for Homecoming
BY KELLY SNOW
COURIER-TIMES SPORTS EDITOR


A host of Person defenders try to take down a running back during a recent game. The Rockets will host Northern Guilford Friday for Homecoming. 
KELLY SNOW | COURIER-TIMES A host of Person defenders try to take down a running back during a recent game. The Rockets will host Northern Guilford Friday for Homecoming. KELLY SNOW | COURIER-TIMES The Person High School football team faced a team last week with state championship aspirations.

This week, the Rockets will be hosting one with state championship pedigree.

Person will be playing host to multiple-time state title winner Northern Guilford Friday for its annual Homecoming game.

Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

The Nighthawks (4-3 overall, 2-1) are coming off a come-from-behind upset of previously-unbeaten Eastern Alamance, 49-48 in double overtime last week. Northern Guilford had won at least 10 games in four previous seasons, including 3-AA state titles in 2012 and 2014 before a stunning 4-8 campaign last year.

Person coach Dave Kleine knows his team is catching a hot Nighthawk squad with loads of momentum.

“That was a springboard game, no doubt about it,” Kleine said. “Not only when you beat one of the best teams in the state and come from pretty far behind to do it and catch them and win it at the end, it’s obviously huge. With that being said, that could be a springboard where they look past us, instead of right at us. We’ve got to continue to control what we can do. We cannot worry about what all the other teams are doing, just the opponent in front of us.”


Person running back Fred Harris finds some room to run during a game this season. 
KELLY SNOW | COURIER-TIMES Person running back Fred Harris finds some room to run during a game this season. KELLY SNOW | COURIER-TIMES The Rockets are trying to recover from a 65-6 crushing from undefeated Western Alamance last Friday on the road. It was the most points Person has even given up in a game and set a school record for largest margin of defeat.

Person dropped to 2-5 overall and 1-2 in the Mid- State after back-to-back blowout losses to both of the perennial state powers from Alamance County.

“We’ve got to put last week behind us,” Kleine said. “We saw a possible state champion last week and they were clicking on all cylinders. We’ve got to get that out of our minds and move forward and play football. We had to sit them down and tell them, they’re a team that’s only given up 4.8 points per game and score 55. That only happens once in a blue moon in regards to high school football. It was a matter of getting them to understand what he faced. That team is as good as it gets in the state of North Carolina. To get that behind us and move on, I thought we had a pretty productive practice (Monday).”

Northern Guilford has an offense that loves to throw it all over the yard and do it fast.

The Nighthawks hurryup offense has been a problem for defenses this season and Kleine thinks his defense may need a little help from his offense.

“Being a hurry up team, when things start going well for them, things start adding up and having snowball effect,” Kleine said. “We’ve got to create the snowball effect in our direction. One of the best ways to slow up a hurry up offense is for us to sustain a run game and take our chances when we can.”

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