Gadsden City (5-5) at Bessemer City (9-1)
Last week’s results: Hewitt-Trussville 17, GCHS 14; BCHS 34, Midfield 6
Last meeting: (2007)GCHS 25, BCHS 21
Series record: GCHS leads 2-0
By Gene Stanley/Sports Correspondent
Quarterback Marcus Key has been, well, key to Bessemer City’s success, as has the defense. Key is capable of beating you with his arm or his legs. In the Purple Tigers’ final region game, against Northridge, Key ran for 167 yards and passed for 228.
“(Key) is a very dangerous quarterback,” Gadsden City coach Matt Scott said. “He has a lot of confidence, especially as a passer. He makes a lot of big clutch throws.
“But if there’s a breakdown in the passing game, he can beat you running the ball.”
Joe Harrell, John Cris Wilkerson and Renardo Pratt lead the defense.
Since giving up 48 points to Hoover in Week 6, the Tigers have allowed only 22 points in four games.
For the season, Bessemer City has given up only 13.5 points per game while scoring an average of 36.9.
“Our offense will have to play awfully well to beat their defense,” Scott said. “We’ll have to execute better than we did last week. We also missed too many passing opportunities.”
Scott said that the offense had too many negative plays last week.
“If we do that against Bessemer City, we could get blown out,” he said.
Gadsden City’s defense played well last week, according to Scott. But too many third-and-long plays.
In fact, the play that scored the winning touchdown for Hewitt was on a third-and-20 situation.
Scott is very familiar with the Tigers, having coached at their archrival Hueytown for the past few years.
“They’re always very dangerous because of their team speed,” he said. “They have more speed across the board than anyone we’ve played this year. They are loaded with great athletes at almost every position. There are no weak areas to try and drive at.”