The South Pittsburg Pirates came to Grundy County High School last Friday night and defeated the Yellow Jackets 45-0. The loss dropped the Jackets to 1-5 overall as they enter their bye week. The Jackets are off tomorrow night and return to action next Friday night at Crisp Field with the first of four straight region contests against DeKalb County.
The Pirates wasted little time getting on the board as they returned the opening kickoff 58 yards for a quick touchdown. The PAT was good and the visitors led 7-0.
On the Jackets second possession, the Jackets did manage one first down before turning the ball over on downs once again at the Pirate 43. Three plays later the Pirates added their third touchdown of the first quarter. They later added another touchdown and led 28-0 after one quarter.
In the second quarter the Jackets once again turned the ball over on downs, this time at the Pirate 32. After stopping the Pirates and forcing a punt, the Jackets gave the visitors a touchdown on a bad pitch that resulted into a Pirate TD. The PAT made it 35-0. The visitors added a field goal later in the quarter and took an insurmountable 38-0 lead into intermission.
With a running clock in the second half, the Pirates managed one score as the Jackets moved the ball better in the second half and controlled the ball, even though they couldn’t penetrate the Pirates’ end zone.
The Jackets were led in rushing by senior running back James McDaniel with 59 yards in 10 carries. Sophomore QB Hagen Cash ran for 45 tough yards on 16 carries. Josh Wingo, after a stellar performance against Upperman, was held to 39 yards on 10 carries.
Defensively, senior Zack Layne had seven stops, while senior Matt Burrows added four tackles. Sophomore safety Ethan Nunley had an interception for the Jackets.
Head Coach Casey Tate had this to say about the game. “South Pittsburg had a lot of speed and we gave up way too many big plays. Offensively, we had some decent drives, but we still
put the ball on the ground too much. Fumbles happen when you’re running the option and as our QB’s progress they will occur less.”
Once again, the Jackets have the night off tomorrow night before they return to action next Friday night when they host the DeKalb County Tigers at Crisp Field at 7:00 pm. The Jackets close out the season with four consecutive region games. Their region record currently stands at 1¬-1. The Jackets can still control their destiny to get into the TSSAA playoffs.