Pleasant Grove Runs its Way into the 3rd Round of Playoffs
The Pleasant Grove Hawks ran all over Wills Point in their second round playoff matchup.
The Hawks used their tough running game to dominate the time of possession, number of plays run, and the scoreboard in the 31-13 victory.
PG Coach Josh Gibson says, " Our hope is to always dominate the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. Since we are a heavy run team, we usually dominate the time of possession when we are moving the ball..Friday night we did just that."
One reason the running game was clicking was great effort by the blockers including the offensive line, tight end, and running backs who are not carrying the ball. The Hawks rely heavily on that running game but do pass the ball on average 5-10 times per game. Gibson wants the passing game to be efficient as possible and try to make a few big plays.
The PG defense had another dominating night as well, along with a solid performance from kicker Matt Day and the rest of the kick crew. It could indeed be the difference in the next round of the playoffs. Gibson believes the kicking game and special teams are important every week. He says, " A team cannot play poor in any phase and expect to win, Special teams could be the deciding factor, We will continue to work very hard with our guys."
These Hawks have two freshman players who are contributing to the winning effort and bring their youthful enthusiasm. They are Ben Harmon and Bruce Garrett.. Gibson is impressed with both, "You don't see many 9th graders playing football in the 3rd round of the playoffs. As a combo thy are the two best QB/RB tandem that I've coached in 16 years. They are special kids and will be special players for the next 3 years."
Next up for the Hawks is a match up with playoff savvy Celina. They will be tough but Gibson believes if the Hawks play their best football they can be victorious. He has his players believing they can beat anyone. You can count on the Hawks being ready to go.
The game is scheduled for Friday at 2PM at Mesquite Memorial Stadium. PG will be the home team. The newly renovated stadium is a state of the art facility that seats 23,000 fans. Gibson says they need a large and vocal Pleasant Grove fan base there on Friday. "The boys have earned it."
Coach Gibson is proud of the progress the football team has made since he took over the program 3 years ago. He took over a program that had gone 5-25 the previous 3 years. They immediately made the playoffs in that first year, playoffs and improvement the 2nd year and now they sit preparing for a 3rd round playoff game this season. Congratulations to Coach Gibson,his staff, and players on this tremendous achievement..
Gibson says, " All the credit goes to our players and coaches for buying into and believing in our program. Belief takes you a LONG way in high school ball, and our kids believe!"
On this Thanksgiving week the players and coaches will be sitting down with their families and enjoying each other, some good food and watching Cowboys football on TV. However, they will also be spending important time with their other family which is the rest of their teammates and coaches. There is no other place they would rather be
We are thankful for this teams effort and proud of their accomplishments. Here's hoping they beat Celina and play into December. We hope a large and vocal PG crowd is on hand in Mesquite on Friday afternoon.
I'm cheering on two teams this Thanksgiving Holiday.
Hopefully they both enjoy their turkey and two victories!