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Rebels spend open week getting back to the basics
Isaiah Bell
Effingham County’s Isaiah Bell (26) hauls in a touchdown pass from Zach Garcia against Brunswick on Oct. 18. - photo by Mark Lastinger/staff

SPRINGFIELD — Effingham County’s football team got back to the basics during an open week last week.

“We are focusing on fundamentals,” Rebels head coach Buddy Holder said. “It's like going back to week one and trying to get them out of here a little early.”

With Region 2-AAAAAA opponents Glynn Academy and Richmond Hill left on the schedule, Effingham County (2-6, 0-2) needs a win to up its chances of making it to the postseason for the fourth straight season.

“Every game is pivotal in the region,” Holder said. “The only game we are looking at is Glynn Academy (on Friday) and trying to get ready for them.”

And Holder isn’t pressing the panic button. He kept a relaxed environment during the bye week, giving his players some much-needed down time. He encouraged them to enjoy the Effingham County Fair.

“We played some really good people,” Holder said. “It's a good time to have off.”

Although the season hasn’t been what the Rebels expected, Holder has enjoyed the luxury of being at home more often than not. Including the scrimmage against Screven County, Effingham County has hosted eight games, which makes for lighter days physically, according to the coach.

“It’s been easier than traveling. I know that,” Holder said. “Last year, it seems like we were loading the U-Haul every week. This year, it's only been a couple times. 

“This year it has been a lot easier travel wise.”

The Rebels have shown glimmers of promise at times but have sputtered at others. Holder is looking for steadiness as the Rebels go into the final stretch.

“You want to get better every game,” he said. “The game we are going into this week, we want to be the very best team we've been all year. At times, we've shown what we are capable of and at times we've shown what can happen when you don’t do right. 

“You try to be consistent.”

Holder praised the recent play of quarterback Zach Garcia.

“He is doing good with his reads and his progressions,” Holder said. “Isaiah Bell came over on offense (at wide receiver) last week and got a touchdown. It’s good to see kids come over and have a little bit of success, take a role that they need to fill and do good in it.”