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By NATHANIEL BRYAN
HODGENVILLE — With his young team off to a to 2-0 start, veteran LaRue County High School coach Rodney Armes was eager to take his Hawks on the road last week.
He’s not so eager to get back on the bus any time soon after the Hawks fell to unbeaten Monroe County, 37-15.
“Can I change my statement?” Armes said with a laugh before Wednesday afternoon’s practice.
LaRue County (2-1) trailed the host Falcons (3-0) by just a touchdown before Monroe County exploded with 14 points in the final 15 seconds of the second quarter to break the game open.
“I don’t think it was as much them as it was us self destructing. Don’t get me wrong, they are a very good football team but we self destructed at the end of the first half,” Armes said.
The Hawks play four freshmen extensively and have first-year starters in key positions such as quarterback and running back. And that type of youth will make his team more prone to mistakes, Armes said.
“You see it with all teams from time to time to have mental letdowns. But especially with young teams,” Armes said. “They were technique and effort mistakes and we just threw them both out the window. You see it from time to time and I wish I knew what caused it. I don’t know if it was the long bus ride or something we did in practice. I wish I knew how to stop it.”
Armes hopes to stop those woes Friday night when the Hawks host the Glasgow Scotties.
Glasgow (0-3) is coming off an emotional 14-13 loss last week to rival Barren County (1-2). The Scotties had a chance to win the game, but benched several players in the second half, including their starting quarterback, for racking up 15-yard penalties in the first half.
“They’re 0-3, but they should have beaten Barren County,” Armes said. “I’m confident they could have beaten Barren County, so to me, they’re really 1-2.”
In a switch from past years, the Scotties are using an I-formation base offense instead of the single wing. Glasgow enters Friday averaging 143 rushing yards per game and 121.7 passing.
LaRue County expected to be a solid run-stop team defensively, but they gave up 236 yards and three touchdowns on the ground last week.
“It’s a challenge for our defense to stop their running game,” Armes said. “Monroe ran outside on us quite a bit and had success, so I’m sure (Glasgow) coach (Billy) Lindsey is taking a look at our outside linebackers and is saying, ‘Well, we’re running there.’”
Complicating matters for the Hawks is a slew of injuries. Two-way lineman Kenneth Sanders is out for the second straight week with a knee injury, while back-up center Kenny Albert is out with muscle tear in his shoulder. Junior Ryan Wafford, a fullback and inside linebacker, is questionable with a knee injury.
“We are banged up,” Armes said. “We have other nicks and bruises and I think everyone else should play, but we’re just a little beat up right now.”
After amassing 490 yards of offense against Fort Knox in Week 1 and 482 against Washington County in Week 2, the Hawks were held to 211 yards on 58 plays by Monroe County.
Armes hopes to get the offense back on track against a Glasgow team which is allowing 288.3 yards and 25.3 points per game.
“I think we can. We were very lax in our blocking last week and it showed. We were terrible in our blocking. We were really hard on them this week because of that,” Armes said. “I think we’ll get it turned back around. I hope we’ll be back to our old offensive ways.”
The game, which kicks off at 8 p.m., will be carried live on ESPN Radio WXAM 1430-AM.
Nathaniel Bryan can be reached at 505-1758