‘Tough’ Rebels ready for 9-win Dunham

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The records don’t adequately forecast the battle ahead as Riverside Academy (4-4) travels to Baton Rouge for a 7 p.m. Friday night playoff game against Dunham High (9-1).

“It’s a team that has had a ton of success versus a team who, if you look at the record, isn’t as pretty but has been battle tested,” RA coach Chris Lachney said. “It’s going to be a test for us, our experiences and our mindset versus theirs. It’s what playoff football is all about.”

Senior quarterback Mike Williams, who weighs approximately 240 pounds to go with his 6’2” frame, leads the Tigers.

“He runs violently and he runs fast,” Lachney said. “He is certainly the focal point of the offense you have to deal with. However, you can’t get too fixated on him because Derek Stingley Jr. (at receiver) is a 6’1” 185-pound junior who has offers from every school in the country. He is as dynamic a player as we’ve seen all year. He is just an absolute threat to score anytime he touches the football.”

In fact, Lachney said Stingley’s impact is felt most on defense, where he makes plays as a game-disrupting defensive back.

“He is the return guy, also, so he is going to affect the game in all three phases and we have to make sure we are accountable to him at all times,” Lachney said.

Dunham, which has not lost since Week 1, boasts a sound and physical defense that tackles well. The Tigers are allowing less than nine points per game over their last eight ball games.

The talent that backs up those statistics will be needed when the Rebels get to town.

“I tell you what we’re not deficient at, and that is taking it one play at a time, one game at a time and one day at a time,” Lachney said. “We don’t really get high and low and stuff like that. We play the very best way that we can. That is a sign of a tough football team, and I believe we have a tough football team.”

Riverside is riding a three-game winning streak and outscoring opponents by more than 29 points per game over that span.