Air strong under wings of Hood’s Eagles

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Heading into the season, they were considered a long shot in Class 6A, Region 6.

Three weeks in, they’re starting to look more like a lock for one of the coveted playoff spots in the state’s toughest region.

If there was any doubt about whether Oak Mountain’s football team was for real, Eagles 17, Rebels 2, erased it.

Head coach Jerry Hood is building the young program into another formidable opponent for Region 6 teams, adding even more competition to the division.

Oak Mountain has been known for its steadfast defense during Hood’s brief tenure as head coach.

The team gave up just under nine points per game last season and has allowed 22 points through the first three games this year.

Friday night the Eagles hit the road for the first time this season for a matchup with the Mountain Brook Spartans.

Hood’s Eagles are the hottest team in the county and should still be flying high after meeting 2-1 Mountain Brook, which erased a halftime deficit on the way to a 34-10 win over Pelham last week.

u Game of the Week prediction: Oak Mountain 17, Mountain Brook 14.

Calera moved to 2-1 last week after plowing through R.C. Hatch, 49-12.

The Eagles will travel to face a much more difficult opponent this week in Pickens County.

The Tornadoes are 3-0 and coming off a 15-14 win over Billingsley.

u Prediction: Calera 22, Pickens County 15.

Vincent, fresh off its first victory of the season, will face a Hale County team still searching for its first win.

The Wildcats, who will host the Yellow Jackets Friday, fell to Gordo 48-15 last week.

u Prediction: Vincent 35, Hale County 14.

Chelsea rolled to 3-0 with a strong second half against in-county rival Montevallo.

The Hornets will host the 1-2 Tarrant Wildcats, who fell just short in a 37-33 loss to Fayette County.

u Prediction: Chelsea 31, Tarrant 28.

Montevallo lost its second straight last week at Chelsea and needs to quickly recover for another road trip Friday night.

The banged up Bulldogs will face the 2-1 Fayette County Tigers.

u Prediction: Fayette County 35, Montevallo 21.

Briarwood takes a 2-1 record into Talladega to battle the 2-1 Tigers, who edged Sylacauga 15-12 last week.

u Prediction: Briarwood 38, Talladega 7.

Things won’t get any easier for Shelby County, loser of two straight, as the Wildcats host the top team in 5A in the Homewood Patriots.

u Prediction: Homewood 42, Shelby County 17.

Pelham looks to bounce back from a loss to Mountain Brook in Friday’s home game against the 2-1 Grissom Tigers, who fell to Decatur last week, 20-14.

u Prediction: Pelham 28-17.

Hoover will host the one of the fiercest young rivalries around when the nationally ranked Bucs battle 2-1 Spain Park.

u Prediction: Hoover 42, Spain Park 17.

After suffering two straight heartbreaking losses, Thompson will look for a road win against the 1-2 Vestavia Hills Rebels, who fell to Oak Mountain, 17-2.

u Prediction: Thompson 27, Vestavia 21.

Meadowview (2-1) @ Coosa Valley.

u Prediction: Meadowview 21, Coosa Valley 10.

MMI (0-3) @ Cornerstone.

u Prediction: Cornerstone 28, MMI 7.

Kingwood @ Abbeville.

u Prediction: Kingwood 38, Abbeville 10.

Shelby @ Southern.

u Prediction: Shelby 28, Southern 21