Kicking game comes together
By Kevin Eckleberry Sports Editor
It’s been a pretty smooth ride for the Callaway Cavaliers this season, but they did have one area of concern early in the season.
The Cavaliers were scoring a lot of touchdowns, but they were struggling making extra points.
As the Cavaliers prepare for a semifinal showdown against Buford, though, that area of concern has been eliminated.
Senior Chase Freeman has become Mr. Dependable on extra points.
In last week’s 35-21 victory over St. Pius, Freeman made all five of his extra-point attempts, and he’s been nearly perfect since taking over the job against Central-Carroll on Oct. 11.
Freeman said shortening the process on extra-point attempts has made a big difference.
Instead of a three-step drop on extra points, Callaway is using a one-step drop now.
“We were doing the three-step, and it was getting blocked,” Freeman said. “We started doing a one-step kick, and it saved time. It’s been working.”
Kickers lose power with the one-step drop, but that’s not a big issue on extra points.
“As long as it goes through there, that’s all that matters,” Freeman said.
Freeman is also Callaway’s punter, although his services haven’t been needed that much since the offense has been scoring so much.
Callaway also usually puts the ball in the end zone, so the field-goal team doesn’t get a whole lot of work either.
Freeman may be called upon to try a field goal against Buford, though, and who knows, he may be sent on to the field to attempt a game-winning kick.
“I’d love that,” Freeman said. “I think about that all the time.”
Callaway also has another talented kicker in junior Hunter Milliman, who has been handling the kickoff duties.
Milliman has a strong leg, and he can send the ball deep on kickoffs, and he has also done a nice job of placing the ball on kickoffs.
“The guys on the PAT team and the kickoff team have gotten better,” Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins said earlier this season. “We’ve put a lot of time into that.”
While Callaway’s kicking game has improved, and the kickoff coverage team has also made big strides, the return game has been a strength all season.
Junior Terry Godwin has a couple of punt returns for touchdowns, including one in the first round of the playoffs against Henry County.
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