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Airedales seek first victory

 Airedales seek first victory

By Kevin Taylor
Alma Schools 
 
The Alma Airedales hope to avoid a second straight 0-3 start Friday when they head for Rogers to face the 7A Heritage War Eagles. 
 
The War Eagles (1-1) snapped a 24-game losing streak last month by thumping Springfield Central  which is in the midst of a 45-game losing skid that dates back to October of 2016. 
 
"When I pop the film in, the first thing I notice is they're (Heritage) a lot bigger than they have been in the last two or three years," Alma coach Rusty Bush said. "Those kids scored 55 points against a Missouri team and now those kids believe they can win, and that's the worst sort of thing you can go into."
 
Heritage suffered a 24-6 loss to Farmington two weeks ago. Quarterback Carter Hensley was just 5-of-23 with four interceptions during the loss. 
 
The War Eagles did not play last week.
 
Alma (0-2) had its chance last week at Poteau. 
 
But four turnovers, which included a bobbled snap on a promising first drive, and a couple of ill-timed penalties led to a 47-10 setback. 
 
"Really, statistically, it wasn't that bad of a night," Bush said. "They (Poteau) had 329 yards (rushing). For a wing-t team, defensively that's not that bad. (But) everything was on a short field and they created points off our turnovers.
 
  "Theoretically, we had a chance to score 28 points, and now you're talking about a totally different game."  
 
Poteau's wing-t forced Alma to play more linemen than they preferred. 
 
"When I got here, I wanted to turn the (defense) into an odd-front because we have more athletic linebackers," Bush said. "(Last week) we had to put more linemen in there, which is where we're not very deep. We had one week to practice on the wing-t and it's just different. On the flip side of that, you can't have four turnovers."
 
Junior quarterback Conner Stacy completed 9-of-15 passes last week and scored the team's lone touchdown. Logan Chronister ran for 113 yards and is averaging nearly six yards per carry through two games. 
 
"He's a tough, hard-nosed Alma kid," Bush said. "He practices at a speed you want out of every one of your kids, and it's hard for high school kids to do that all the time."
 
Chronister and fellow senior Jacob Coursey are playing on both sides of the ball. 
 
"I actually went to coach (defensive coordinator Ernest) Pressley and said you're going to have to get him out of the game some defensively, because he's carrying the ball every time for us on offense," Bush said. "Logan's a great team leader, and he's gotta carry the load for us as far as carrying the football."