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Football: Rocks Need to Beat Tigers, Receive Some Major Help

Shadyside looks to improve upon playoff position

October 28, 2011

SHADYSIDE - You won't catch either Barnesville's Luke Johnson nor Shadyside's Mark Holenka checking out any playoff ratings or computing any points this week.

Each head coach realizes that prior to any thought shifting to the postseason, they have to take care of their business, which is a head-to-head matchup at Fleming Field. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.

Actually, Shadyside knows its headed to the Division VI, Region 21 tournament, but the Shamrocks, who've dropped two straight since reeling off seven straight victories to begin the season, must win and then get additional help if they're to be a part of the postseason party in Division V, Region 17.

''I don't even feel like we can be focused or worried about the playoffs at this point,'' Johnson said. ''We have to focus on the game at hand, and that's against a good Shadyside team.''

The Tigers come into their regular-season finale with a 6-3 record and a victory should clinch them another home game for Week 11.

''Being in the playoffs is a nice reward for the kids who've put forth the effort,'' Holenka said. ''Obviously it's a great reward, but I'm not looking at the playoffs as much as I am looking at getting a Week-10 victory.''

In its last two games, Barnesville has been bitten by the turnover bug.

After throwing seven picks against Monroe Central in Week 8, the Shamrocks were guilty of two lost fumbles against Magnolia.

''You can't turn the ball over like we have and expect to win games,'' Johnson lamented. ''I think our kids will be ready to play. We've not given up at all, but we have to take care of the ball.''

Regardless of how the Shamrocks have been playing, Holenka knows they'll come to Fleming Field and put forth their best effort.

''Barnesville and Shadyside has become somewhat of a rivalry,'' Holenka said. ''I realize Barnesville is reeling a little bit, but they're well-coached, hard-nosed and play football the good, old-fashioned way.''

The Shamrocks offense boasts a three-headed monster in the backfield. Quarterback Zack Dornon has run for more than 600 yards and six touchdowns. Preston Dornon, who was bottled up by the Blue Eagles, leads the way with 750 yards.

Jesse Stoudt went past the 600-yard mark last week and has scored nine touchdowns.

Zack Dornon has passed for more than 1,100 yards and 13 touchdowns. He's been picked off 16 times.

Senior Tyler Fitzpatrick leads the receiving troops with 29 catches. Preston Dornon has made 15 receptions.

''The Dornons are a nice family of ball players, but really I think Barnesville has a lot more weapons than just those guys,'' Holenka said. ''We'll have to pick our poison because they're certainly more than just a running team.''

Shadyside's offense, meanwhile, has become quite diversed and offensive coordinator Mark Bonar has made it tough for opposing teams to key on a particular attribute.

''Shadyside is extremely quick and well-coached like always,'' Johnson said. ''I think they have a very strong team. I feel like their quarterback is getting better and they've got some other kids around him who are talented.''

The Tigers quarterback is junior Chase Kinemond. He's rushed for 433 yards and eight touchdowns, while passing for 612 yards and eight scores.

Also in the backfield, junior Brooks Ramsey is the leading rusher with 772 yards and six touchdowns. Chris Littell and Alex Quinn have also come along as solid options.

Kinemond's favorite target in the passing game is junior wide receiver Cody Hudson, who has 16 receptions for 348 yards and five touchdowns. Freshman Austin Dorris is the second-leading receiver with five catches.

''I think our offense has improved by leaps and bounds of late,'' Holenka said.

''The Coach Bonars (Mark and Gregg) have had great patience to get us to grow offensively. We must be two-dimensional this week and beyond.''

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