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FOOTBALL: Bardstown-CAL in top-10 showdown

November 28, 2012
Bardstown High School

FOOTBALL: Bardstown-CAL in top-10 showdown

Bethlehem opens district play at Caverna

By Peter W. Zubaty, Sports Editor

With Bardstown, Christian Academy-Louisville and DeSales all in the top 10 and gunning for the top seed in Class 2A District 4, there are plenty of chances to prepare for the playoffs over the next few weeks.

“It makes it exciting to play and it makes it exciting to coach,” Bardstown’s David Clark said of the difficult part of the Tigers’ district schedule, which begins tonight at Christian Academy.

Last year’s Bardstown-CAL meeting was a classic, with the Centurions’ power running offense wearing down the Tigers late for a thrilling 21-16 win and going on to claim the district title and top seed in the playoffs. This time around, the stakes are just as high as the winner will have the inside track to the title.

DeSales hosts CAL next Friday, and visits Bardstown Oct. 19.

“There’s a very strong possibility any of us will see each other again down the road” in the playoffs, Clark said. “It’s a good measuring stick of where we are at this point and where we need to go.”

The Centurions (4-2 overall, 2-0 dist.) haven’t changed much from last season, even if some of the personnel have. Power back Ivan Talley, who carried it 41 times for 224 yards and two touchdowns in last season’s game, has graduated. In his place is junior Nick Payne, who has accounted for 624 of his team’s 924 rushing yards on the season and has seven touchdowns to his credit. About 65 percent of CAL’s yards come by way of the ground behind a strong line.

The Centurions are also stingy on defense with a front line that likes to clog the middle and force action to the outside. They’re allowing 176.8 yards and less than nine points a game.

“We’re going to take advantage of the matchups they give us (and) avoid getting out of our comfort zone,” Clark said. “It’s a big district game (and) it’s going to be a playoff atmosphere type game. The kids — they’re really looking forward to the challenge.”

Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.

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