“We had about four or five pretty (significant) injuries from that game (Wellborn) and we had a couple from the week before that are still healing,” head coach Bobby Fairley explained. “They’re a physical ball club. We don’t get to sub much and when you’re more tired, you’re more susceptible to getting hurt. That probably has a lot to do with it. They were a hard-hitting team. The week before, Woodland was a very physical team. Sometimes, it just builds up when you play two or three teams in a row like that. You have to have a little time to heal up.”
Fairley said the team will do everything they can to return next week against Decatur Heritage Christian, but with multiple injuries, all they can really do is wait and see if the injuries heal adequately.
“We’ve got a concussion, we’ve got a hip pointer, we’ve got a hurt back and bruised ribs,” Fairley said. “Hopefully, some of those will be well so we can go back to playing next week. As of right now, we’re going to play but when Monday and Tuesday get here if we’re not able to go I don’t know. We’re hopeful we’ll have enough back next week and maybe we can keep them healthy after that.”
Victory Christian loss last year’s contest at Pleasant Valley 55-0, so Fairley knew even if his team were fully healthy, the Raiders would have been a challenge.
“Pleasant Valley—they’ve had some rough luck the last few ball games, but I know they were a good ball club,” Fairley said. “Ranburne, Vincent, and Fultondale—they’re all tough. We’re basically a 1A school. Those schools have two and Wellborn right now has three times our enrollment. We’re fighting to get back to 1A.”
Victory Christian figures to move down to class 1A for the 2014-15 athletic season based on enrollment figures, but are still in class 2A because of previous enrollment figures. Fairley said the team will grow from this difficult experience. Fairley is especially proud of his senior players, who won’t get to enjoy the opportunity to play against class 1A competition next season.
“These kids love that school,” Fairley said. “They love playing too, but I’m sure they’d like to play in a situation where they could be more competitive. That’s where I have to admire them because they know we’re behind the eight-ball every week we go out there, yet they’re still out there at practice, they’re working hard, and they do everything we ask of them. I have a lot of admiration for them.”
Fairley said it’s been a much different week of practice because of the injuries, but his team continues to work hard.
“We’ve been taking it kind of easy this week,” Fairley said. “We’re trying to get some of these kids healed back up and not getting anybody else hurt. It hasn’t been a real physical week, but every week is a good week with these kids. They work hard and they give it all they’ve got. It’s been a good week of practice. We haven’t done anything real strenuous or anything, but we’ve been working. That’s all we can ask out of them.”
Victory Christian has forfeited this week’s scheduled game against Pleasant Valley. They are expected to return to action Friday Sept. 27 at Decatur Heritage Christian.