Bay and Blountstown meet Friday in our Game of the Week
PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG) -This week’s high school football game of the week has us focused on the game set for Blountstown Friday night where Bay and Blountstown will go head to head.
The Tornadoes hitting the road with a 1-2 mark, and riding a bit of a roller coaster of sorts so far this season. Coach Bland says he liked the way they played in the jamboree, then had a rough regular season opening loss to Mosley. They bounced back with a win over another county rival Arnold. And last week suffered a letdown in a shutout loss to a good Marianna team.
Now they get set to play down in class, against 1A Blountstown, though anyone will tell you playing the Tigers, never an easy game!
“Even though it is a 1A program, and I’ve said this before, there is great football on that level.” Bay head coach Keith Bland told us. “And they had a great success last year. And honestly, on our schedule last year, looking back, they were the best team we played. They are tough, and what I respect about Blountstown, and what they’ve established, is they expect to win!”
Coach Bland goes on to say there is a lot to respect about Blountstown’s program, starting with the vibe the Tiger faithful create every Friday night.
“You know you go over to Blountstown and play, what a great atmosphere.” coach Bland said. “I’ve been a head coach on the smaller 1A level, Friday night that’s the only show in town. They’re (the fans) going to be there. Our stadium is a little bit bigger, with the track and I say it kind of shelters you from hearing everything in the stands. But when you get down in the atmosphere in Blountstown, they’re right there behind us, you hear all the good and all the bad that is being yelled down at you. You know they play so tough and play so well, you know that’s a program, even though it’s a smaller classification than we are. It’s something I want to emulate, as a program to get to that point to where we expect to win every Friday night like they do.”
As for the Tigers, coach Johnson says he’s playing 7 sophomores this season, which you could easily argue should make it a rebuilding year there, but nobody in Blountstown likes to hear that, as coach Bland says, they expect to win every Friday. So far, two and two, though it could be different in either direction.
As for the Tigers, they head into this game 2-2, starting the season with losses to Marianna and Chipley, then getting wins against Sneads and FAMU. Coach Johnson saying all four were very physical battles, and he’s expecting more of the same in a couple of nights when the Tornadoes visit!
“And we’re pretty beat up.” Blountstown head coach Beau Johnson told us. “But our kids are used to playing tough competition. And coach Bland and Bay High is going to be very tough competition. They’ve got some great looking kids. Some good speed at the skill spots, and some big lineman. And I’m really impressed with what direction Bay’s heading in.”
The Tigers even up after four games, coach Johnson though says it hasn’t been much separating them from wins and losses so far!
“We’re two plays from being four and oh, but also two plays from being oh and four. Every single week has come down to the last thirty seconds. The beard is grayer than it was in August. But I love my kids, they play hard, they try hard, they give great effort. They’re trying to do the things we ask them to do.”
That game in Blountstown set for 7 o’clock and it’s one of several we’ll feature on Friday Night Overtime.
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