Mistakes and missed opportunities proved costly for Jellico High School’s football team Friday night in its 2009 season opener.
Playing at archrival Williamsburg, Ky., the Blue Devils fell behind by two touchdowns and were forced to play catch-up the rest of the game. The Yellowjackets won, 38-16, to retain bragging rights for another year.
“We competed with them, but they’re clearly the better team right now,” said Jellico coach Danny Oakes.
They dominated the stats. We dropped two touchdown passes wide open and dropped an interception that could’ve been returned for a touchdown.
“Actually our defense saved us (from being completely blown out). We played tight early in the game and made some mistakes. We had too many turnovers (3) in the first half. We made a pretty good run late in the game to get (the margin) down to 30-16.”
The Blue Devils scored their touchdowns on a 35-yard pass from quarterback Tyler Brummett to wide receiver Nathan Overton and a 65-yard kickoff return by newcomer Darius Marlow. Senior running back Ryan Morris scored both two-point conversions.
Linebackers Freedom Scott and Morris carried the defense with eight and six tackles, respectively.
“Their quarterback (Ryan Moses) is a good ballplayer, and he was the difference in the game,” said Oakes.
“We played pretty hard the whole game. We didn’t give in to them. I’m disappointed we lost, but, at the same time, we made some improvement.”
The Blue Devils will travel to upper East Tennessee tomorrow (Fri.) night for a non-conference game at North Greene.
Jellico will take the field without starting wide receiver Jeremiah Thompson, who suffered a leg injury in the third quarter against Williamsburg and will be out 4-6 weeks.
“That’s one of our speed guys,” said Oakes.