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October 23, 2013

Comets homecoming week comes with cruical game

VELMA — Sometimes, homecoming games are a chance for football players to pad their stats, win easily and enjoy the festivities.

That’s not the case for Velma-Alma this week. It faces a tough test in Rush Springs, which is still fighting for a playoff spot. The Comets (5-2, 3-1) are riding high off a three-game win streak with their only loss in the last five games coming against district-leading Ringling. Still, Rush Springs (2-4, 2-2) will command all of coach Greg Gothard’s team’s attention on a night when there will be plenty of distractions.

“There’s a lot of things going on, but oh, by the way, we’ve got a football game,” Gothard said. “Really, none of those things happen without the football game. Our job, this team’s job and the coach’s job is to make sure we take care of Friday night.”

The first goal for Velma-Alma will be to establish its ground game. While junior quarterback Ty Richardson can hurt defenses with his legs and his arm, the offensive line play will be a big factor in how the Comets do, according to Gothard

This year, the comraderie of that group is a lot better than it has been in the past, leading to better play.

“We’re like a family,” offensive lineman Alec Richardson said. “It’s hard to explain the bond we have with each other. Our offensive line, we do everything with each other.”

That high level of understanding shows itself on the field and it’s a large part of the teams success so far this season. It will be put to the test this Friday.

The Rush Springs players need a win to make strides towards locking down the fourth playoff spot in the district. Velma-Alma can douse those dreams with a win while effectively securing its own playoff spot.

“All we have to do is go out there ready to play in the first quarter,” Richardson said. “We haven’t done that in the past couple of games. We need to do that if we want to win.”

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