|C-P facing "most challenging" match-up so far this season|
|Joseph Elerson | News-Telegram Sports Writer|
Sept. 10, 2004 - COMO - The Como-Pickton Eagles know tonight's matchup at Heflin Field will bring one of their most challenging opponents in a Class 2A non-district showdown.
Coach Joe Ryzman's Eagles (2-0), out of District 17-2A, face off against the Harmony Eagles (1-1), from District 19-2A, in their final home non-district game. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
"They (Harmony) have lost to a very good team in New Diana which wasn't a one-sided game by any means, and they beat a decent team in Frankston, so they are a good ball-club even though they are 1-1," Ryzman said.
Harmony, under head coach Jerry Blankenship, lost to New Diana last Friday night 26-15, and beat Frankston 16-0 in Zero Week action.
Harmony is picked to finish third in their district behind Elysian Fields and Troup, according to Dave Campbell's Texas Football Magazine.
"I expect a solid performance from them, and I expect them to be a team that I have seen on film which plays very aggressive and seems to keep their poise under pressure," Ryzman said.
"Harmony will be the best ball team we have seen this year. So it is going to be a good challenge for us and will be an opportunity to see where we are at as a ball team."
Senior quarterback Jonathan Montgomery (6-3, 210) will lead Harmony this season, after setting three school records last season for attempts, completions and yardage.
Montgomery ended the 2003 season guiding the team to an 8-3 playoff berth, going 87-of-164 passing for 1,426 yards, nine interceptions and eight touchdowns during his junior campaign.
Tyler Parsons will be the main target for Montgomery again this season after setting school single-season records in receptions and yards during his sophomore year. Parsons had 38 catches for 547 yards and four of Montgomery's eight TD passes last season.
"They (Montgomery and Parsons) are two of their best athletes, so you have to be focused on them," Ryzman said. "They've got more than two athletes, and they are a pretty solid ball-club. So we are going to really focus on not just stopping them but containing their whole offense."
CPHS will feature senior running back Tyrin Porter, who is averaging 222 yards a game and 21 yards a carry this season in the two wins over Rivercrest and Celeste. Porter has seven touchdowns while backup running back Ray Hayden has helped out the cause with 106 yards a game and a 12.5 yards-per-carry average with five rushing touchdowns.
"I think Tyrin would be the first one to commend his offensive line, and he is a very talented individual and I am glad to have him," Ryzman said.
Como-Pickton has outscored Rivercrest and Celeste 103-7 in two ball-games this season and the offense is averaging 525.5 yards per game, while the defense is giving up only 163 yards of offense per game.
"I feel good about it, but I am always focusing on next week and not last week," Ryzman said. "I am looking at what we need to correct and what we need to do to get better."
Ryzman said he believes the team needs to continue improving this season to make it back to the Class 2A playoffs after a two-year absence, when the team went 5-6 under coach Sam Walker.
"We need to keep getting better every day and every week and that has been our goal and we have been doing so, Ryzman said. "If we do that, then we have an opportunity to achieve our ultimate goal, which is making the playoffs."
The Eagles will return home Oct. 1 against the Quitman Bulldogs, after back-to-back road games against the Collinsville Pirates and the Grand Saline Indians during the month of September.