Southeast Bulloch head coach Jared Zito said before the season he felt this could be a special year if he could just get his team to understand how good they could be. Friday night the Jackets lived up to their coach’s expectations with an impressive 20-13 win over Class 6-A Effingham County.
“I feel like our kids really played their guts out Friday,” Zito said. “We played great defensively again, and I felt like we had a few more explosive plays on offense. The good thing is from an execution standpoint I really still feel like we have some ways to go. We had one turnover on the opening play of the game, but we were perfect after that. We forced a couple of turnovers and I just felt we had total control for a while, and then lost control. It would have been easy to just fold up, but we fought back and made a big stop and then got two first downs to end the game.”
Zito has preached to his team to rise to the challenge of beating a bigger opponent and now feels the team has a little more confidence going into the rest of the season.
“We still have some awfully tough teams left on our schedule but I think this win lets those teams know they better be ready for a fight,” Zito said. “Our players now feel like they can step into that ring and battle with anyone for four quarters as we now have a little more confidence.”
The Jackets are now 2-1 on the season as they hit the road Friday for a matchup against the 1-2 Tattnall County Warriors. The Jackets beat Tattnall 23-9 last year in Brooklet and Zito hopes the focus will continue against a team they handled pretty easily last season.
“Success can be the enemy of success,” Zito said. “Learning how to sustain success after a big win is something we hope to be able to do Friday. Tattnall still running things out of their Wing-T formation and they will be physical. You have to be prepared for them to come downhill at you and they will have some athletes. The biggest thing we have to do is continue to make progress ourselves. We made some corrections this week and we hope to carry that into our game Friday at Tattnall.
Southeast Bulloch and Tattnall County are scheduled for a 7:30 kickoff Friday in Reidsville.