Parklane relying on running game after QB's transfer
Every team faces adversity throughout the course of a football season.
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For Parklane head coach Bo Milton, his Pioneers ran into trouble before the campaign even began.
Steven Swindle, slated to be Parklane's starting quarterback, transferred to Oak Grove just a few days prior to the Pioneers' first game.
Swindle's sudden departure left behind a team that is still searching for their identity as they host Starkville Academy on Friday.
"We've really just been relying on our running game and our defense has played pretty good," said Milton. "We just try to control the clock and play sound defense and those have been our strengths so far."
Parklane's strategy has resulted in a .500 record to this point in the season. The Pioneers (1-1) lost to Jackson Academy in their opener before answering with a win over Centreville in the season's second week.
If Milton's squad is to keep their momentum rolling from the Centreville win, they'll be looking for strong performances out of senior quarterback/tailback Brandon Austin and sophomore tailback Joseph Clark.
Milton says the versatile Austin has impressed through Parklane's first two games.
"He's kind of a scatback-type kid," said Milton. "He ran for 165 yards against Centreville two weeks ago, so he's played well."
Clark has delivered for Parklane as well, averaging between 60 and 70 yards per game according to Milton.
"(Austin and Clark) are our cogs right now for our running game," said Milton.
Parklane enters Friday's game on the heels of an early-season bye week. In that time, Milton says he's had plenty of time to scout the Volunteers, and the Pioneers head coach has been impressed by what he has seen.
"(SA) is much improved from last year," said Milton. "They very easily could be 2-1 right now."
Standing out to Milton is Starkville Academy's option game.
"Anytime you play a team that runs the option, you've got to play sound, fundamental defense," said Milton. "Everybody has to carry out their assignments. Adding to that, (SA's) defense runs to the ball and they tackle well."
With the improvement he has noticed, Milton says he feels it's just a matter of time before the Vols break into the win column.
"They're due and will get a win real soon," said Milton. "We just hope it's not this week that it happens. Maybe they can wait until next week."