HOUSTON – The Houston Hilltopers took to the field on Friday night to face the Itawamba Agricultural High School Indians.
The Toppers would ultimately take their homecoming game by a score of 28-14.
There were numerous problems throughout the game, the main one being the water.
With the torrential downpour the area had been subjected to on Thursday, the field had not had time to dry by game day. This led to several fumbles, dropped snaps and passes as well as trouble with the run game.
Houston's offense struggled at times, almost seeming to have trouble finding their groove, they also had difficulties getting the run game going, but that was partly due to the lockdown defense of the Indians. Most of the Toppers big plays came through the air.
A few notable exceptions were a blocked punt that was fallen on in the end zone for a Topper touchdown.
There was also a kick off return, initially dropped by Jalen Washington, who proceeded to pick it back up and return it for a touchdown.
But for every big play like this, you had a three-and-out or a fumble recovered by the Indians. This was the main points of concern for head coach Baylor Dampeer.
“Its good to get a win,” he said. “Anytime you get a win is good. It was obviously a little sloppy with the weather being like it was, but had a lot of guys banged up, had a lot of guys step up and played all freaking night, and found a way to get it done. Proud of those guys that did that.”
Looking forward, Dampeer sees room for improvement, and that is what he aims to work on. His main concern was his offense. According to him, they need to work on rhythm, but he said defense is close to where they need to be, with maybe a few tweaks here and there.
“We have just got to find a rhythm offensively. Defense played their tails off and really proud of them and the way they played. We just have to find some rhythm offensively and get this thing going.”
The Toppers now look to next week's opponent, when they head to Ackerman to take on the Chocktaw County Chargers.