By Les Dixon for the Times-Tribune
It’s deja vu time for Jerry Herron’s Williamsburg Yellow Jackets.
For the second time in three weeks, the Yellow Jackets will be facing off against familiar foe Pineville.
But this time around, there is more at stake.
Herron’s squad will face-off against the visiting Mountain Lions with a region championship game appearance on the line.
If Williamsburg’s last game against Pineville was any indication of things to come, then the Yellow Jackets will be playing in the region title game for the third straight year.
Williamsburg is riding an eight-game win streak after starting the season 2-2, including a 47-0 win over the Mountain Lions just two weeks ago.
The Yellow Jackets scored early and often against the outmatched Pineville squad, and actually led 47-0 at halftime before Herron decided to put the reserves in during the second half.
Even though his team has beaten the Mountain Lions with ease on two different occasions this season — the other came during an SEKC scrimmage win in Middlesboro, Herron said his team isn’t overlooking Bart Elam’s squad.
“This is going to be a hard game,” he admitted. “It makes things a whole lot harder on the kids facing a team for a third time after you have beaten them twice. Kids are going to be kids, and they know they’ve had success against them twice already and our job as coaches is to continue to keep them focused. Pineville is going to work hard and you can count on coach (Bart) Elam having them ready to play.
“Everything clicked when we played them the last time, but this is a different week and game,” Herron added. “The big obstacle for us is to continue to do what we have been doing while remaining focused. That's the biggest issue — being overconfident. Our kids are working hard, and they're being professional about everything, so I believe we’ll be OK.”
If the past six games are any indication, it’s going to be hard to stop Williamsburg. The Yellow Jackets have recorded four shut outs during the stretch, including the past three, and have outscored their opponents 311-33 during the six-game stretch.
“We’re playing well right now, but we know we can’t be too relaxed,” Herron said. “We’ve got to come into this game and take what Pineville gives us.”
Williamsburg rolled up 388 total yards on offense during its last meeting with Pineville, as Dalton Sizemore completed 10-of-17 pass attempts for 200 yards and four touchdowns while Patrick Jefferson scored twice carrying the ball while finishing the game with 79 rushing yards.
The Mountain Lion secondary had no answer for the Yellow Jackets’ wide receiving duo of Skyler Griffith and Corey Shelton. Shelton had five catches for 101 yards and one touchdown while Griffith finished with four receptions, 90 receiving yards and three touchdowns.
“We need to do what we’ve done all year, and that is to do execute on offense and exploit what they give us,” Herron said. “Our defense has played great. We've got our kids running to the ball and attacking. We continue to do that, I believe we’re going to be successful.
“Like I said, anything can happen, but if we continue to work hard, I like our chances,” he added. “Our kids know what’s at stake, they just need to go out there and take care of business.”
Williamsburg, Pineville battle for spot in Region Finals
By Les Dixon for the Times-Tribune
- Local Sports
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets are partying like it's 1987! That was the last time the Jackets won a game in the 13th Region Tournament, and they ended the 27-year drought with a 47-44 win over the heavily-favored Knox Central Panthers on Thursday night.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'Em
When it comes to picking region tournament games, it’s not an easy task to say the least. This is the most parity that I’ve ever seen in the 13th Region Boys and Girls Tournaments.
If Clay County’s play during the first game of the 13th Region Tournament is any indication of things to come, Robert Marcum’s squad could be well on its way of capturing their second straight 13th Region championship.
The Way it is
Since I’m picking Corbin to pull off the upset against Jackson County today, I figured I’d give my top five upsets dating back to 2005-06 when the 13th realigned and welcomed both North and South Laurel high schools to the mix.
Tony Pietrowski’s Corbin Redhounds have been favored during the past two first round 13th Region match-ups, and have been upset both times. Corbin is hoping things might change a bit this time around.
Barbourville will have hands full against Bell County today
Dinky Phipps’ Barbourville Tigers are looking for their first 13th Region Tournament win dating back to 2006’s tournament when they defeated Clay County in the regional semifinals.
Like It or Not
There’s an elephant in the room at this year’s 13th Region Tournament, and really in basketball in general, and I guess I’ll be the first one to point it out (publicly with my name attached to it).
Chris' Daily Region Pick'Em
With the first three days of opening round games in the books, I can honestly say I'm not surprised that I'm 4-2 overall when it comes to my pick'ems record.
You can never count out the Clay County Lady Tigers when it comes to the 13th Region Tournament.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'em
After going just .500 during the girls games, things are going to get even tougher when it comes to picking the 13th Region Boys Tournament games.
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