By Kyle Lovern
December 5, 2013
GOODY, Ky. – Belfry’s defense could have its hands full as they face Wayne County and their talented quarterback on Friday afternoon for the Class 3A state championship in the Bluegrass State.
Senior Tyler Guffey is a Mr. Football candidate for the state of Kentucky and his stats show why.
Guffey has thrown for 3,128 yards completing 162 passes in 280 attempts and 32 touchdowns in 14 games this season. The athletic quarterback 6’1”, 220 pound signal caller has also rushed for 657 yards and 19 touchdowns.
“They have a very good football team,” Belfry coach Philip Haywood said. “You don’t get to the finals unless you are good.”
“They are big and strong and they also have good skill people,” Haywood added. “Their quarterback is great. He runs the ball well and he can throw it.”
Haywood said the Cardinals, who are undefeated at 14-0, have put up a lot of points this season. Wayne County has scored 577 points and only allowed their opponents 161 points.
Comparatively, Belfry (13-1) has scored 536 points and allowed 248 to their opponents this season.
Guffey is not the only weapon the Cardinals have. Running back Kadameion Branham has rushed for 628 yards and eight TDs, while several other players have gotten carries out of the Cardinal backfield this year.
Guffey has several good receivers he can throw to. Jason Perkins has 59 receptions for 1,371 yards and 15 TDs, while Logan Gardner has 51 receptions for 818 yards for seven TDs and Alan Brown 38 catches for 768 yards and nine TDs.
Haywood knows that Belfry’s opponent has a balanced offense. They can both throw the ball and run the ball.
“They have a big rushing attack, but they will throw it on any play,” Haywood said of Wayne County.
“On defense they are big and rugged. They are aggressive too,” the veteran BHS coach added. “They don’t give up many points.”
Belfry’s strong running game will be tested in the state championship game.
Haywood and his staff also know that their defense will have to step up to the task.
“Our defense has improved each week,” Haywood said. “We have especially played well in the playoffs.”
As usual, Haywood said he just wants his teams to improve each day in practice and each week after they play.
The Pirates only have one blemish on their 2013 schedule – a loss to Class 4A Johnson Central in the regular season finale.
Haywood said that he and his staff don’t “verbalize” a goal to reach the state finals.
It is an unwritten rule and a Belfry tradition that the Pirates play for championships. Once again, on Friday afternoon in Bowling Green, Ky., they have the chance to win another state title.