The Calhoun Yellow Jackets have a lot of tradition on the football field and in the history of the school itself, and they will celebrate that on Friday when they host Haralson County at The Reeve at 7:30 p.m. for Homecoming.
Calhoun (4-1) completed their region crossover games with a 40-13 home victory over North Murray, and they will now host the Rebels for the first of four Region 6-AAA South subregion games that will determine their seeding and the ability to possibility play for a 17th straight region title in the final week of the regular season in the Region 6-AAA Play-in game.
Calhoun coach Hal Lamb said Homecoming is always a special week at the school but could make it more difficult for the players to focus on preparing for the game. But he said he believes they will keep their priorities in order and set themselves up for success this week in practice.
“Homecoming is what it is, and it is an exciting time for us here at Calhoun,” said Lamb. “As long as we handle it the right way, it can be a very good week. The bottom line is you have to have it one week during the season, and there is no way around it. Hopefully, we can take care of business this week at practice and get a win on Friday, and the kids can then enjoy Homecoming on Saturday.”
The Jackets put together a solid effort last Friday in the win over the Mountaineers, especially in the second half as they put their foot on the gas to pull away by a big margin. Calhoun played well in all three phases, including a dominant defensive effort where they held North Murray to just three yards rushing and had six total sacks. They also had a balanced night on offense rushing for 227 yards and throwing for 254 yards. Zack Fuller ran for 197 yards and three touchdowns on 18 carries, and Gavin Gray threw for all 254 yards on 20-of-33 passing with two touchdowns.
Lamb said he was pleased with the complete effort against a good North Murray bunch.
“Offensively, we’re really coming together,” said Lamb. “The offensive line blocked as well as we have all season, and Zack ran it really hard like he always does. Gavin threw it well and ran the offense efficiently. And we continue to play at a very high level on defense. They were all over the field on Friday, and they continue to be very strong.”
Calhoun will be without three players on Friday as they serve a one-game suspension following their ejections during last Friday's game against North Murray. Zeke Nance, Owen Williams and Drew Rutledge are the three Jackets serving the suspension.
Haralson County (0-4) is on the opposite end of the spectrum as far as consistent and successful play this season. They are winless under first-year head coach Scott Peavey and are coming off a heartbreaking 17-14 loss to LFO last week on a field goal in the closing seconds. Lamb said he knows the Rebels are struggling at the moment, but his team has to focus and prepare just like any other week.
“Haralson is struggling right now, and they are coming off a last-second field goal loss against LFO,” said Lamb. “They look like they are well-coached and trying to turn things around under a new coach. The biggest thing for us is to worry about ourselves and what we can do to play well. Hopefully, we can play well on Friday and not take this game lightly.”
Calhoun is 3-0 all-time against Haralson County, and Lamb said his team needs to just play their brand of football and focus on improving in order to have a successful night on Friday.