BROOKLET — Pat Collins teaches math. So the Southeast Bulloch head coach had little trouble figuring out Friday night’s results.
“Twenty-three is greater than 12,” he said. “And two is better than zero. When you can win a game and not be going exactly like you want to, you count your blessings.”
Despite some miscues and an avalanche of penalties, the Yellow Jackets improved to 2-0 with a 23-12 win over Long County in Brooklet Friday night. It wasn’t pretty, but a packed house at Fred Shaver Field didn’t care about pretty. After more down seasons than the fans care to recollect, two wins to start a season is pretty satisfying.
Pat White helped set the first-half tempo for the Jackets, intercepting a Jacob Turner pass that was batted into the air at the line of scrimmage. White collected the ball with nothing but the end zone bleachers in front of him and returned the ball 79 yards for SEB’s first touchdown.
White’s play erased what could have been a costly fumble early in the game.
From there, the Yellow Jackets hit the accelerator.
Cameron Duncan hit big David Johnson for a 14-yard touchdown and Dee Odum plowed into the end zone from four yards out to put the Jackets up 20-0. Southeast Bulloch tagged on a late field goal by Drew Ware to go into the intermission up 23-0.
Collins praised the defensive staff of Jack Webb, Josh Thompson, Shawn Coburn and T.J. Norman for designing a scheme to deal with the wide open passing attack of Long County. He should have also thanked the Blue Tide receivers, who dropped a surprising number of catchable footballs.
Often, the passes were threaded into their hands through tough SEB coverage by Turner, who finished with 108 yards and a late touchdown.
The biggest catch to the celebration for Southeast Bulloch was penalties. The Jackets saw more yellow flags than a stock car race for the blind, amassing 127 yards in penalties. Most of the penalties were on the offense, which is still learning to play in the tricky and demanding Wing-T.
“We’ve got to clean up on the mistakes and penalties,” said Collins. “I’m not happy about the penalties and lack of execution, but we’ll get better.”
Although they only compiled 248 yards of total offense and no second half points, SEB looked methodical at times, particularly while winding down the second half clock. In addition to the touchdown catch, Johnson piled up 83 tough rushing yards. The big running back picked up 55 yards in the second half as the Jackets milked the clock.