3A football semifinals: Dixie will try to find a way to put up points against Juan Diego
"No doubt that it begins with those five up front. If we keep the ball then obviously that's good defense on Barney," he said. "If he's sitting on the sidelines drinking Gatorade and we're getting first downs then we're doing a pretty good job defending against him. We got to rely on the offensive line to control the line of scrimmage."
Juan Diego has a veteran blocking corps in the trenches highlighted by three-year starters Zack Schekel (5-11, 230lbs) at center and Harry Jones (6-2,235lbs) at right tackle. Cameron Rokich (6-6, 232lbs), Winston Swicord (5-10, 215lbs) and junior Mason Pearce-Clawson (6-3, 212lbs), who Colosimo referred to as a "big physical presence" complete the front five that averages 277.4 yards per game on the ground.
One blatant advantage in favor of Dixie is experience in the fourth quarter. Juan Diego hasn't entered the final quarter with the game still in doubt since Sept. 7 against Skyline. The Flyers, three times, have needed to score in the fourth quarter to win.
"That's always a concern when you haven't been in the game in the fourth quarter and you have to make some plays. That's a concern, no doubt about that," Colosimo said. "I think it hurt us last year in the quarterfinals. We got into a tough second half with a very good team and we didn't respond very well.
"You look at Dixie in that regard they have the edge. They've been in those type of games and they've responded."
Monkres, nonetheless, doesn't believe the lack of late-game competition is an issue.
"They're well coached and (Colosimo isn't) going to let them let down," he said. "Coaches know that on any given day anybody can beat anybody so they'll come to play. It seems like the bigger the game the better they play."
Dixie vs. Juan Diego
Friday, 6:30 p.m.
Parry's Power: JD by 9
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