TRM to host Greensboro in round one
By Adam Robinson
The T.R. Miller Tigers will open up their 2014 playoffs with a home game Friday night against Greensboro.
TRM and Greensboro have played four teams, all in the playoffs, and the Tigers own a 3-1 overall record. The two teams last met in 2011 in the first round in Brewton and TRM won 55-12. The lone loss came in the 1997 playoffs. TRM won in 1995 and 1996.
Greensboro is 7-3 overall and went 4-2 in region play. Greensboro defeated West Blocton 28-22 Friday night in overtime.
TRM head coach Jamie Riggs said Greensboro has improved a lot since midseason.
“To beat West Blocton Friday night after being down all night was big,” Riggs said. “West Blocton was undefeated. West Blocton, for an example, defeated Northside (WSN’s opponent) 48-14 and Greensboro defeated West Blocton. That is the difference in the 3A and 4A deal right now. That is just the way it is.”
Riggs said Greensboro is a senior dominated team.
“I would say they have about 35-36 players on the team and half of them are seniors,” he said. “A lot of the better people they are playing are seniors.”
Riggs pointed out several Greensboro players that stick out to him.
“Their tailback has been their offensive show this year,” Riggs said. “He is No. 23, Jamarquise Singleton. He has great speed and has given everybody problems over the last four weeks. We have to see if we can find an answer to him some way. The running back Singleton also plays outside linebacker. They are all really good athletes and we have to deal with them some. They have great team speed overall so we are going to have to maintain our blocks.”
Defensively, Riggs said Greensboro has played much better the last few weeks.
“They have two very good defensive tackles in No. 52 Peter Pernell and No. 57 Anthony Jackson, Jr., who is the big one,” Riggs said. “Pernell is the really fast one and the bigger one, is 6 foot 3. They have a big tall defensive end that has given a lot of people fits in No. 6, Jauan Conner. He has given everybody grief the last two and three weeks.”
Riggs said Greensboro comes in on a roll and is looking for an upset.
“They are a very formidable group here that is really on a roll,” he said. “Their blocking has really improved in the second half of the season. We really have our work cut out for us. Usually in the first round of the playoffs you get someone who is not really all that good, but this team has won seven games. They are playing really well this year. The win against West Blocton was also on the road and they were down 14-0 in the first half. This Greensboro team fits a team that can pull an upset in round one. We better be ready.”
After Friday’s win over rival WSN, Riggs said fighting back after an early deficit and rallying after several miscues, could help his team in the playoff run.
“Any time you can play a really good team like WSN and have some things happen to you that was not really good, and you can come back and win, I think it bolsters your confidence and lets you know you can come from behind,” he said. “In the playoffs, everybody will be behind some time in the playoffs. If you are in the playoffs, you are pretty good. So if you get behind, you learn to have more confidence in yourself and not panic.”
Out of 59 football teams in class 3A, TRM’s offense ranks No. 11 in the state with 369 points scored in 10 games for an average of 36.9.
Greensboro ranks 33rd with 242 points scored for an average of 24.2.
In scoring defense, Greensboro is No. 10 in the state after allowing 158 points so far this season in 10 games for an average of 15.8. TRM ranks No. 16 after allowing 170 points for an average of 17.0.
If TRM can win their first round game, the Tigers will have the most 10-win seasons all-time. The Tigers are currently tied with Colbert County and Hazlewood with 24 seasons in which they have won at least 10 games.
TRM currently has 84 playoff wins and can tie Hazlewood for the most in Alabama high school football history if the Tigers defeat Greensboro. The Tigers also hold the state record with 31 first round playoff wins. TRM is 23-0 in first round home games, which is the most without a loss. Hazlewood won 24 first round playoff games with one loss before the school closed.
“We really would like to have a nice crowd,” Riggs said. “This is going to be a tough game. In the playoffs, you take things one week at a time. I told our players last week that if we lost against WSN, we would have to get back up and come back out in the playoffs. Then I said if we won against WSN, we could not let that win linger. We would have to come down off the win and get ready for the playoffs.”
Game time is set for 7 p.m. in Brewton.