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Comets back on the road tonight to face Magna Vista

“We’ve got to play a good game of football.”

That one sentence from Halifax County High School Head Football Coach Mike Roark pretty well sums up his team’s situation as it travels to Ridgeway tonight to face Magna Vista High School in a Piedmont District contest.

Both teams enter tonight’s 7 p.m. contest coming off of victories. The Comets (1-6 overall, 1-3 district) rolled to a 45-6 win over Patrick County High School last Friday night in Stuart while Magna Vista High School (6-1 overall, 4-0 district) edged GW 29-28 in Danville.

Last week’s road win over Patrick County High School couldn’t have come at a better time as the Comets snapped a six-game losing streak. The win, Roark said,  has made life in the Comets’ camp better.

“The win helped everybody,” he pointed out.

“The enthusiasm and emotion and getting the monkey off of our backs is good for everybody. Practice has been a little quicker and more up-tempo. It’s been a little more fun to be out there. People are realizing we can do some good things. Now, it’s lets get better and do some great things.”

Last week Roark had some new faces in some positions and with everybody getting to play last week, those players in new positions had a chance to get acclimated to their new responsibilities.

“We’re doing a lot of rotation at wide receiver now,” Roark pointed out.

“Joseph Coleman was hurt in August and he’s gotten healthy and came back. Matthew New is one of those kids sitting in the wings waiting for his time. He doesn’t say word, but he works his tail off. Both of them got shots last Friday and got catches. 

“Kyle (Lacks) is still running the ball pretty quick,” Roark continued.

“Rymel (Windsor) has been helping us out on defense and has had three pretty good games on defense. Devan (Richardson) and Roland (Brandon) are running the ball well. Also, our special teams have been pretty solid this year. 

Sophomore Jacob Garrett returned to the quarterback spot last week, playing under center for the first time since the Comets’ third game of the season against E.C. Glass.

“Jacob did a good job at quarterback managing everything,” Roark pointed out.

“He didn’t throw any picks (interceptions) and I think that was the first time all year we’ve done that. If you don’t have turnovers you can move the sticks and make some things happen.”

Roark noted that Magna Vista High School is a very good football team. 

“They’re good and they’re fast,” he remarked.

“They were junior-loaded last year and are senior-loaded this year, where we’re mostly juniors and sophomores. Hopefully, two years from now we’ll be doing the same thing. They’re playing everybody and playing them pretty well. They have a good program over there. They’re starting to reap the rewards.”

Roark pointed out the Comets gave Magna Vista High School a good game last season, but that mistakes on special teams were too much for the Comets to overcome.

“We gave them a run for the money here last year,” Roark noted.

“We gave them probably 21 points on special teams last year. We can’t do that Friday night. We’ve got to come out and play perfect special teams. We can’t give up big plays on defense. We’ve got to be able to move the sticks.”

Roark said the bottom line is pretty simple.

“We’ve got to bring the “A” game,” he explained. 

“We know there is going to be some adversity. We know we’ve got to handle the adversity. I thought we did a good job of handling it in the third quarter last week when things got a little crazy. We weathered the storm, and hopefully we can do the same thing Friday night.”