By Les Dixon / The Endzone Staff
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets might be off to its worst start since 2010 at 2-2, but ask almost any team in the state if they’d like to be sitting at .500 after facing off against two unbeaten teams, and their answer will be more than likely, “Yes”.
Jerry Herron’s squad has played one of its toughest slates in a long time, while gearing up for a deep run in the post-season. His team might not have played anyone in Week Four, but they have gotten better.
“We’ve seen the mistakes that we’ve made during the losses, and now we’ve been able to learn from those and correct them,” Herron said. “You always want to win every game you play, but sometimes you don’t. We were in both of our games against North Laurel and Wayne County, but couldn’t get the win in either game.
“Those games will prepare us for the long haul,” he added. “They’ll prepare us for the district and the post-season. That’s why we scheduled those teams. It allows us to see something that we’ll probably see down the road. Our kids feel confident and we know where we need to be to be competing for a district and region championship. I don’t think it means much if you go 10-0 and then get beat in the region final. We’re looking at the big picture here, the season isn’t a sprint, it’s a good, solid 400 run, and that’s what we’re preparing for.”
There have been a lot of positives so far for the Yellow Jackets. They’ve picked up wins over both Halls, Tenn., and Pike Central while hanging tough against both North Laurel and Wayne County.
“We’ve learned a lot from every game we have played so far this season,” Herron said. “We know what some of our weaknesses are right now, and those are eye-opening things. This week off has been very good for us and it has allowed us to get better.
“It came at a good time,” he added. “We’ve had some kids that have been able to heal some nagging injuries, and we’ve also been able to get some other kids eligible to play. Both of those are big plusses for us.”
Once again, Williamsburg is led by its high-scoring offensive attack that is averaging 45 points during its two wins and only 13 points in its two losses.
Quarterback Dalton Sizemore has completed 70-of-118 pass attempts for 1,160 yards and 10 touchdowns while rushing for 162 yards and five touchdowns. Receiver Corey Shelton leads the way with 533 receiving yards, 23 receptions and five touchdowns while Skyler Griffith has 22 receptions for 388 yards and four touchdowns.
Even with the .500 start, Herron knows his team is built for the long-haul.
“We don’t care what other people think,” he said. “Yes, we’d like to win every game just like every other team in the state, but the thing is, we knew we needed to play a tougher schedule because it’s going to help us in the end.
“We see the big picture, and we know what we’ve got to do to accomplish our goals,” he added. “We’re going to continue to work hard and take care of business. This upcoming game against Harrison County is huge because they are a quality team and we need to build some momentum with district play coming up.”
Jerry Herron pleased with Yellow Jackets’ progress going into bye week
By Les Dixon / The Endzone Staff
- 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.
- More Local Sports Headlines
- Knoxed Out