The same cannot necessarily be said of Danville (3-2), which opened the season with three impressive wins before dropping consecutive games.
“They look like they’re a good football team,” Boyle coach Larry French said. “They’ve got great athletes, they get after it and they’re playing with a lot of passion right now. ... They’re a lot better football team than they’ve shown the last couple years.”
Danville did not show improvement in its last two games, losses to Somerset and Southwestern. Harp said line play was the Admirals’ undoing in their 22-19 loss at Southwestern last week.
“We just got manhandled on our offensive and defensive lines,” Harp said. “And even at that, we still had a chance. We had our opportunities in that game to win it.”
Boyle has won 19 consecutive games, most recently beating Mercer County 63-14 in its home opener last week.
“I think we improved, and I think that’s the big thing,” French said. “We got a little better Friday night, and hopefully we can continue to improve and be ready for the district games when they arrive.”
Boyle has won five of the last seven and eight of the last 11 games in the crosstown series, which Danville still leads 32-15-1.
Rushing is an even bigger part of Boyle’s offense this year. Roughly 75 percent of the Rebels’ total yardage has been gained on the ground, where Chris Cook leads the way with 517 yards and six touchdowns and Devon Cox has 359 yards and five TDs.
Quarterback Devon Hale has completed 30 of 46 passes for 388 yards with five touchdowns and four interceptions, and Lloyd Hall is the leading active receiver with seven catches for 117 yards and one TD.
Boyle is averaging 48 points and 432 yards per game, while the Rebels’ defense has allowed 18.3 points and 181 yards per game.
“They still play excellent defense, they take care of the ball on offense and they don’t make very many mistakes,” Harp said. “They’re very sound in all three phases of the game, and if you’re not on the same page with them they’ll make you pay for your mistakes.”
Danville is averaging 29.4 points and 292 yards per game, though it has been held under 200 yards in its last two games and in three of its last four. Its defense is allowing averages of 14.8 points and 210 yards.
“They’re pretty balanced in what they’re trying to do (on offense). They can run the ball or throw the ball,” French said. “And they’re playing a lot better on defense.”
Quarterback Devonta Alcorn is 25 for 47 passing for 551 yards, and he hasn’t throw an interception in the Admirals’ last four games. Cameron Burgess and Colin Turner have eight receptions each for 228 and 170 yards, respectively.
Leading rusher Patrick Brand has 464 yards in four games.
Harp said motivation is never a problem when a rival is the next opponent, and he said his players should have no problem staying focused — at least not while they’re at practice.
“The main thing is to stay focused because there’s so much extracurricular stuff going on,” he said. “I think once we get in practice it’s not difficult. They key to it is obviously staying mentally ready to go while they’re in school and at home, because I’m sure that’s all they’ve heard about since last Friday. I know it’s all I’ve heard since last Friday.”
French said he doesn’t think focus will be a problem for either team, and he said Boyle shouldn’t expect another easy win.
“I’m sure they’re confident they can win,” French said. “It’s going to be a battle. Our kids are going to battle, too. It should be a good football game on Friday night.”
(Danville leads 32-15-1)
1965 — Boyle County 0, Danville 0, tie