Download the PDF file . newsimg9a9cfd28311db221b19757424a2f3b66s3amazonawscomarticlesemanuelhall03jpg

The Centennial Cougars go on the road this Friday for a chance to start the season 2-0 for only the third time since 2002.

The Centennial Cougars visit the Overton Bobcats Friday night for the Humdingers' Game of the Week.

Story by: Sam McGaw

Centennial (1-0) at Overton (0-1), 7 p.m.

The Centennial Cougars go on the road this Friday for a chance to start the season 2-0 for only the third time since 2002.

Standing in their path of achieving that mark are the Overton Bobcats, who fell to Division II-AA school Father Ryan 29-23 last week.

According to Centennial head coach Brian Rector, the Bobcats’ present a tough challenge with their playmaking ability on both sides of the ball.

Centennial running back Deon Sanders throws a stiff arm towards a Northeast defender

“I expect to see a tremendous amount of athleticism from them,” Rector said. “They’re well-coached and they get after it. They really do stretch you horizontally. As soon as you start defending all of the horizontal game they have, between they’re jets and quarterback runs and whatnot, they have a really good running back and offensive line that can pop you right up the middle.”

In last week’s 41-7 victory, the Cougars gave up only 49 yards on 32 carries against the Clarksville Northeast wing-T offense. This week, they face a completely different animal with Overton’s style of play.

“Essentially, it comes down to pursuit and run fits. Can we run to the ball extra hard and extra fast and still fit the run properly? If we can do that, we give ourselves a chance to win. If not, it’ll be a long night.”

The Centennial offense will also look to be effective in the running game this week after they ran the ball 54 times for 291 yards and four touchdowns last Friday.

“We have to find ways to get our running game to not be just okay, but we have to find ways to get our run game to be darn-near dominant,” Rector said. “…I would say perimeter blocking out of our wide receivers is going to be a major, major component for us this week.”

One of the keys to the Cougars’ success on the ground is senior running back Deon Sanders.

Sanders is coming off a Week 0 performance in which he racked up 35 rushing yards, 28 receiving yards and two scores on 12 touches.

“I expect them to be really physical,” Sanders said. “…They really get after the ball and I’m really excited. It’s good competition. I love going against it.”

Leading the Centennial offense at quarterback are seniors Owen Roth and Connor Rietveld.

Last week, Roth had 123 passing yards, 44 rushing yards and a touchdown, while Rietveld had 27 rushing yards.

Centennial receiver Emanuel Hall had 4 rec. for 78 yards and 1 TD against Northeast

“I was really proud of the way they managed the game, especially our up-tempo, no huddle. I was really proud of the way they read in the running game. If a high school quarterback is 10-of-13 with a touchdown pass and no picks, I’m going to take that and be really happy with it.”

When the Cougars decide to open up their passing game, all eyes will be on the potential battle between CHS receiver and Missouri commit Emanuel Hall (4 rec., 78 yards, 1 TD) and Ole Miss commit CB Ugo Amadi.

Hall said he’s looking forward to matching up with the fellow Southeastern Conference talent.

“It’s just exciting, Hall said. “We’re both two very good athletes. He’s a very respectable athlete. I’m working really hard this week getting prepared for him and scouting him a lot. I’m really excited about it.”

Sam McGaw is the sports editor for Franklin Home Page. Email him at [email protected]. You can also follow him on Twitter @SamMcGawSports.