September 11, 2009 9:35:00 AM
MACON -- Ronnie Sciple didn''t plan on having a week off this early in the season.
But after a less than scintillating performance in a season-opening victory against Immanuel Christian, Sciple found plenty for his Central Academy football team to do last week in an off week.
The Vikings will try to implement what they worked on in that off week at 7 tonight when they play host to The Veritas School.
Central Academy (1-0) enters the game ranked No. 3 in The Clarion-Ledger''s eight-man football rankings, while The Veritas School (3-0) is No. 4.
The Vikings had the open week because Old Dominion, the scheduled opponent for Sept. 4, didn''t have enough players to field a team.
Sciple and his players knew in advance that they would have the week off, and they set out last week to iron out the wrinkles that slowed them down in a season-opening victory against Immanuel Christian.
"We had a lot of stuff to work on," Sciple said. "We had a lot of line play issues. Hopefully, we have some of that worked out.
"Defensively, we handled it real good against Immanuel. We focused on the drills to help things out."
Sciple said Calvary Christian and Tensas Academy are up next on the schedule after The Veritas School. He said the Vikings "have their work cut out for them" as they work to improve for this key stretch of games.
"The Veritas School has more speed," Sciple said. "They are more fake here or fake there. Calvary is a gunslinger. They''re going to throw the ball down the field. Form what I have heard, Tensas has gone to the spread.
"I hope to see a better team that we saw against Immanuel."
In the coming weeks, Sciple said the Vikings will have to contend with teams with a lot of speed.
On the other hand, he is confident his offense has a number of weapons and speed to make it equally difficult for its opponents.
"We''re well rounded," Sciple said. "We can line it up and run it at you or we can spread it out and throw it at you. We will find out what we have got in this next three-game stretch."
Seniors Hunter Campbell and Trevor Eaves said the Vikings need to take better angles up front to get off the blocks. They agreed that the offense didn''t play as well as it is capable of playing and that both sides of the ball need to raise their level of execution.
Campbell gave the Vikings a C+ for their effort against Immanuel, while Eaves said the team got its first-game jitters out of its system and will be ready to face different styles of play in the coming weeks.
"We''re ready for this week," Campbell said. "The off week got us anxious for this week and we practiced hard."
Tonight''s meeting will be the first of two for the teams this season. The Veritas School will be the home team tonight for the game in Macon.
The Vikings will be the home team Oct. 23 when The Veritas School returns to Macon.
The Veritas School, which played 11-man football last season, will play only two home games this season.
Adam Minichino is the Sports Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.