Butler jumped out to a 31-0 halftime lead against Providence on Oct.12, and cruised to a 45-14 win.
This week, the Bulldogs face South Mecklenburg, coached by former Butler assistant Rocky White. If the Bulldogs win this week, the Oct. 26 game against rival Independence could be a contest for the Southwestern 4A conference championship. But Hales said his team wouldn’t look ahead.
“With this group, that’s the one thing that we just don’t worry about,” Hales said. “There is such leadership on this team that they will be focused and ready to go on the task at hand.”
Hales has been impressed by senior quarterback Zach Gross, who has gone 19-for-27 for 345 yards while throwing three touchdowns and one interception during the last two games.
“I’m proud of Zach, and he’s developed so much recently,” Hales said. “He’s a humble guy, puts the team first and does well in the classroom. I’ve been really pleased with how he’s progressed and happy he’s gotten this opportunity.”
• Butler defensive back Malachi Hanes is expected to play this week after suffering a lacerated kidney in the season opener. He hasn’t played since.
• Lineman Michael Nealy missed the Providence game but is expected to play against South Meck.
• Quarterback Riley Ferguson will visit a doctor this week, and Hales expects the senior to have his cast removed. If so, Ferguson could be ready for the showdown with Independence.