BROOKLET — Southeast Bulloch picked up its first win in region play with acomfortable 40-7 victory against Savannah High.
The Yellow Jackets wanted to do everything in their power to get the taste of last week’s loss to Islands out of their mouth. Friday night seemed to be a step in the right direction, as all three phases put on a solid outing.
“Overall, I’m glad to get back in the win column and get a win in region play,” head coach Barrett Davis said. “I thought we came out and first half we were pretty good. They gave us some stuff here and there.”
The things the visiting Bluejackets gave the home team could be summarized by two plays — a fake punt in the second quarter and a pick six.
The fake punt was the only mistake SEB’s special teams made. On a 4th and 10 and down by 20 points, SHS’ Jasheem Bratten took the ball to the left and picked up 11 yards for the conversion.
The next play, Michael Dixon intercepted Ja'quasis Gary and took it all the way to the house.
Dixon’s pick six wasn't the only one Friday night as the Yellow Jackets forfeited one of their own.
With seven minutes before halftime, SEB was driving from its own 25 yardline. Ethan Shannon took the ball for a 12 yard carry, but a block in the back negated the play.
Then Khristian Clark dropped back in the pocket and started to scramble. An SHS defender grabbed his shoulder and Clark lofted the ball to Michael Washington who waltzed into the endzone for the Blue Jackets' lone score.
“Defensively we made some good stops first half,” Davis said. “We finally got a couple of interceptions. We have to clean some stuff up with contain issues.”
As good as the defense was, the offense also finally began to show what it could do for the first time this season.
Both Jabari Daniel and Ethan Shannon each amassed 90 yards and a touchdown. Clark opened up the playbook by spreading the ball around to three different receivers, including a deep ball to Dixon who made an Odell-like catch for the score.
“We’ve got the pieces. Skillswise, we have more options than we did last year,” Davis said of his offense who ended with more than 300 yards. “We have to do better at sustaining drives and marching down the field. We have to be able to pick up first downs.”
The best phase for the home team came from the Yellowjacket special teams.
On kickoffs, Jonah Jones kept the receiving team guessing between a high squib and a deep kick. On the squib, the visitors would be met with three Yellow Jackets. On the deep kicks, the ball was high enough that the receiver had nowhere to run, pinned inside of his 20 yard line.
To top it all off, Tradon McBride had his third kickoff return for a touchdown this season.
“We’re able to hold each other accountable,” Davis said. “If someone is not doing what they’re supposed to, we have options. That's something we’re having to learn and it’s a good problem to have.”
Back at .500, both on the season and in Region-3AAA, the Yellow Jackets will head to Beach next Friday. Davis said that the victory over SHS is a good boost, but there’s still room for improvement with six games to go.
“We have different options, so when someone needs a break we can roll some fresh legs out there,” he said. “I think we’ve got a good makeup and good chemistry, we just have to be able to put it together very quickly.”