STANTON – Central Montcalm’s football team has outscored their three opponents 82-0 this season.
That second number is the key, as the Green Hornets haven’t allowed a point in the opening three games.
While that’s the ultimate goal of every defense in football, it’s happening for Central, and coach Marty James credits the players on the defense for that scoreless streak.
“I think the No. 1 thing is when you have a group of guys that are willing to buy into the game plan every week and they execute it, you’re giving yourself a chance to be successful,” James said. “We have some guys and several of them have been in the defense for four years, so they have a great understanding of it.”
If you ask James, the Hornets aren’t really thinking about going unscored on, which hasn’t been done since 1972 by Saginaw Arthur Hill.
“We don’t really think about the streak,” he said. “We think about shutting out Manistee. That’s going to be a tough accomplishment.”
One of the inside linebackers on the Hornets, Garrett Morris, is, though.
“We’re going to try for nine straight,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s going to happen, but it’s our goal.”
Morris gives credit to the defensive line for the streak.
“I think our defensive line has been better than it has been in the past years. It makes it easy on the linebackers,” he said.
That line has a number of returning players, which James said helps.
“When you have the luxury of having so many returning starters on defense, it gives you a chance to go into the season with some confidence,” James said.
James noted the defense had to be leaned on Friday when the Hornets faced Hesperia. There was no scoring until there was three minutes left in the game, and Central won 7-0.
“Our defensive coordinator Kris Kolbe puts the plan together, but the main thing is we have to have the kids to buy in,” James said. “We have to have kids try to execute what we teach them. We’re very aggressive, and that’s what helps us create turnovers”
In order to keep up the shutout streak, Morris said the defense has to play as a unit.
“A good week of practice and everyone playing as one on defense,” he said.