The Daily Register - Harrisburg, IL
  • Prep Football: Getting Back On Track

  • Harrisburg looks to rebound Friday against Red Devils
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  • Murphysboro got off the schnide last week with a rousing 31-0 victory over Sparta at home.
    The win was the first on the season for the Red Devils and Harrisburg head coach Jason Roper knows that one taste of success has done more than just whet the appetite for Murphysboro as both teams come into Friday's game starting Ohio Division play in the River-To-River Conference.
    "It's always something you look at at the start of the season. You really want to get that first conference win, regardless of what your overall record is at that point. Murphysboro will be looking to make a statement come Friday."
    Marion made a little statement of their own last week, drubbing the Bulldogs in front of a home crowd as Harrisburg suffered its first loss of the year.
    Roper says he'll be interested to see how his team responds and how they will bounce back.
    "I think that game opened our kids' eyes a little bit,: Hampton said of the 48-13 loss to Marion."I think it opened everyone's eyes to the fact that we have to get back to work. It humbled us and showed us where we need to get to for the end of the season."
    Suffice to say, Roper knows he'll not see another team like Marion all season. That being said, the sixth-year head coach pointed out that Murphysboro does pose a threat similar to Marion in terms of rushing.
    Much like dealing with Henry Jones Week 3, the Bulldog defense must not bear down and have to contrain Red Devil Diamante Bradley, who thus far, has carried the ball 43 times for 453 yards and four touchdowns.
    "They run extremely hard," Roper says. "Gary (Carter) has done a nice job, things seem to be more organized and they're playing very physical on both sides of the ball."
    Michael Dann can be reached at hbgsports@dailyregister.com. Follow him on Twitter @spydieshooter.
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