After months of offseason work, practices, conditioning sessions and weight lifting sessions, the Bethlehem Christian Academy football team will take the field for a game that counts Friday.
The Knights are set to host Windsor Academy of Macon at 7:30 p.m. at Legion Field in Monroe.
The game will be the first regular season contest for a varsity football team in Barrow County for 2014.
After taking part in a preseason scrimmage last week against Thomas Jefferson Academy, BCA coach Lance Fendley believes his squad is ready to start the new season. He’ll find out in just two days.
“We are ready to get the season started,” Fendley said Monday morning. “We are looking forward to a good week of practice as we prepare for our new season.”
The Windsor Knights are coming off a 0-10 season in which the program had a coaching change during the middle of the year. Coach Jimmy Watts returns for 2014 and is looking to provide some stability for the Macon-based program.
“They are much improved,” Fendley said. “We watched them scrimmage against Gatewood last week so we’ve seen them on tape and in person. They have a few good weapons. Their middle linebacker, who also plays center, is a very important piece of the puzzle for them. Their tight end is their main passing target.”
Windsor has moved from the Wing T to more of a spread option attack. Defensively, Windsor uses a 4-2-5 look with Cover 3 with blitzes up the middle.
“This will be a good test for us,” Fendley said. “It’s a great game to open the season with. They are similar to us in many ways. We want to play faster and be the more physical team on the field.”
In terms of keys to victory this week, the BCA coach said winning the turnover battle will be huge.
“First and foremost, we have to take care of the football,” Fendley said. “ We want to keep them off the field which means winning the third down battle. If we can do that then we will be in great shape to win the game.”
Another area that will play a factor in who wins will be special teams.
“During scrimmages and 7-on-7 drills, no one works on special teams,” Fendley said. “That is a big part of the game, especially when you are talking about the season opener. It’s an area where there will be a little rust. Most people have their offense and defense set, but have to play catch up on special teams.”
While work continues on BCA’s on-campus football stadium, Friday’s game will be at Legion Field in Monroe. Fendley said progress is being made on the on-campus site, including light poles now going up.