Injured Casey better prepared

Lincoln facing Rockcastle

September 10, 2003|MIKE MARSEE

If there's one thing Casey County could have done without this season, it's a rash of injuries.

But after injuries broke out all over the place in the Rebels' last game, coach Andy Stephens said he feels his team is better equipped to deal with them than when the season began.

They'll find out Friday when the battle-worn Rebels face Franklin County in a bid to break a two-game losing streak.

At least one of the three Casey players injured in its loss to Pulaski County last week is expected to miss the game, and two others will likely be at less than their best.

But Stephens said the young players who will back them up are better prepared than they were just three weeks ago.


"We were worried a little bit about our depth, but I felt pretty good about how the guys who played behind (the injured players) played on Friday," Stephens said. "It showed us we have some depth. It's young, but we feel pretty good about putting them in there now."

Wide receiver-safety Blake McGinnis is expected to miss the Franklin game after suffering a severe ankle sprain last week. Stephens said McGinnis was unable to walk on the injured ankle Tuesday, and he said juniors Dustin Perkins and Micah Ball will probably take his place.

Stephens said running back-safety Rex Delk aggravated a strained neck muscle suffered before the season. He said Delk was "questionable" and said junior Tristan Harris would play when Delk could not.

Finally, running back-defensive end Andrew Allen suffered a shoulder separation but is expected to play, though perhaps only on defense.

Casey also lost returning quarterback Kyle Long before the season even started with a knee injury.

Those who are on the field for Casey (1-2) will face a Franklin team trying to turn its fortunes around under a new coach, Donnie Walker. The Flyers (1-1), who lost all 10 of their games last season and gave up nearly 40 points per game, won their opener this season against Grant County before losing 22-14 last week at Frankfort.

"They've looked pretty decent," Stephens said. "They play real aggressive and come at you from a lot of different places, and they've got a lot of team speed."

Lincoln County (0-3) at Rockcastle County (2-1)

Lincoln coach Robbie Lucas said the Patriots may have let a win get away last week, but they'll have a hard time making up for it this week.

The Patriots travel to Mount Vernon to face last year's Class AAA runner-up, and while Lucas said there is much to be learned from this game, his team will have its hands full just as it did two weeks ago against Danville.

"Rockcastle is a very good team," Lucas said. "They're extremely big and strong. I don't think they've got the athletes they've had in the past, but that still doesn't stop them from running the ball."

Lucas also said playing the ninth-ranked Rockets on their own field will be a valuable experience for Lincoln.

"It is a very tough place to play," he said. "We've been home for three weeks. I'm eager to see how we do when we get out on the road in a tough atmosphere."

Rockcastle opened with wins over LaRue County and South Laurel before losing 24-14 to Dunbar last week.

Meanwhile, Lincoln held a lead over Garrard County into the third quarter before falling 18-7.

"Looking at the film, we felt like that was a winable game," Lucas said. "They turned it over to us several times, and I felt like we should have put it in the end zone a little bit."

Lucas also said Lincoln could have done more on defense.

"They were forced turnovers for the most part, but we had 47 missed tackles, and that's very disheartening, and we had some blown coverages that allowed Garrard to move the ball," he said.

Lucas said it's all part of the learning process that he hopes will help Lincoln in its district schedule later this season.

"We wanted to make sure we improved each week, and we have. Everything we do is gearing toward the district," he said.

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