The Junior Jacket football team came out of the gate strong last Thursday night, with a 30-0 blanking of their hosts, Dayton City Middle School. The win was witnessed by a large contingent of Junior Jacket fans that made the long journey to Dayton to support their team.
Head Coach Derryl Graham commented on the big season opening victory, saying, “The coaches were proud of the team. The boys really played hard. We made some mistakes early in the game, but we settled down and took care of business. Our defense stood tall throughout the game. Our offense took a few plays to get on track, but that was just early season mistakes that we will work on to get better.
“The biggest thing was that our kids didn’t understand the difference of playing on the mountain and playing in the valley in August. We were sucking air early, but we were able to overcome it with the depth that we have this year. Our depth allowed us to give our kids some breaks early in the game. Our kids have worked hard and they are pushing each other for playing time.”
Coach Graham also noted the large crowd of Junior Jacket supporters. “We probably had as many fans as the home team. When you have support like that from your fans it helps your program in a lot of ways.”
The Junior Jackets are set to host Bledsoe County Middle School tonight (Thursday) at the old Grundy County High School. Game time is 6:30 p.m.
Coach Graham told his players, “From now on, each week gets a little tougher and the competition gets a little better.”
The home opener will be the district opener as well. The district is made up of the old Sequatchie Valley Conference. Besides Bledsoe Middle, the district teams are Sequatchie County Middle, Whitwell Middle, Jasper Middle, and South Pittsburg Academy.
Coach Graham noted, “These kids take a lot of pride in being able to play against family and friends throughout the valley.” He added, “From a coaching standpoint, we will have to work hard to get our kids back down to earth and be ready to play a tough Bledsoe County team that beat us last year and went on to play for the district championship.”
This is a big week for football on the mountain. If you are truly a football fan, this is your time of the year. The Junior Jackets tonight and the Yellow Jackets tomorrow night hosting games give football fans a great opportunity to get their football blood flowing. Football fans come out and support this team. They are the future of Grundy County football and if last week was any indication, the future is bright. Get excited and fill the stands and show this team you are behind them.