Shelbyville jumps out to homecoming lead before losing 26-14
2017 Shelbyville Dragons (0-4)
Sept. 1 L vs. Elkhart 40-23
Sept. 8 L @ Hemphill 18-14
Sept. 15 L @ Garrison 28-0
Sept. 22 Bye
Sept. 29 L vs. Corrigan Camden 26-14**
Oct. 6 @ All Saints Tyler 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 13 @ San Augustine* 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 20 vs. Joaquin* 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 27 @ Cushing* 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 3 vs. Carlisle* 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 10 @ Alto* 7:30 p.m.
*District Games **Homecoming
After spending two weeks on the road followed by a bye week, the Shelbyville Dragons fell short in their homecoming game against the Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs, 26-14.
There was excitement in the air even before the opening kick as it was announced that Kalie Vaughn had been elected the 2017 Shelbyville Homecoming Queen. Those from Shelbyville were in good spirits eager to see their Dragons obtain their first win of the season. Unfortunately, they would leave disappointed on that front.
The Dragons opened the game with possession of the football. Shelbyville was able to sustain an 11-play 58-yard drive, culminating in a 25-yard rushing touchdown by junior running back Trace Jackson.
Leading 7-0, the Dragons then proved capable of standing tall on defense shutting down the Bulldogs on fourth and five, with junior linebacker Sawyer Hendricks in on the stop. The Bulldog’s defense was then able to send Shelbyville’s offense to the sideline with a three and out.
Defense back on the field, the Dragons were quickly able to revive what momentum had been lost when junior linebacker Kaleb Campbell tipped, then intercepted, an errant pass from Corrigan quarterback Terrell Cook.
The Dragons and Bulldogs spent the larger part of the second quarter trading possession of the football back and forth. With only 40 seconds left to play in the half, Corrigan-Camden running back Ty Love ended the drought for the Bulldogs on a nine-yard touchdown run. Following this score, Corrigan made the gutsy call to fake a field goal and try for two. However, the Dragons were not fooled and held on to their lead. Fast forward two plays and both teams exited the field with the score tight at 7-6, advantage Shelbyville.
The third quarter began with the Dragons coming up with another stop, but the play that followed that change of possession will haunt these young players. The ball was snapped, handed off, then fumbled. Shelbyville made a strong effort to recover, but ultimately their attempts would push the ball further and further into their backfield, until it was recovered by Corrigan-Camden eight short yards away from pay dirt.
Seizing the opportunity, the Bulldogs pressed the ball into the end zone with Ty Love once more. This time scoring from only four yards out. Once again opting to go for two and falling short Corrigan took the lead 12-7.
For the remainder of the third quarter and the beginning of the fourth the Dragons had no answer for the Bulldogs. Shelbyville was unable to stop Corrigan-Camden from reaching the end zone, as they scored on their next two drives. The first came when Ty Love, now at quarterback, threw an 11-yard dart to senior tight end Alex Vance, and the second when Terrell Cook, now at running back, sprinted to the goal line from 42 yards out. These scores left the Dragons trailing 26-14.
The following drive held only more heartbreak for the Dragons, as a huge running play from sophomore quarterback Jaylon Brinson was mostly negated by a costly penalty. Instead of first and goal from the one, they found themselves at first and ten from the 28-yard line. Four plays later Shelbyville was unable to convert and turned the ball over on fourth and long.
Finally, the spark that the Dragons displayed in the first half returned, when they forced and recovered a fumble that eventually lead to a three-yard offensive score from junior running back Jacobi Jackson. Regrettably, it was too little, too late for the Dragons as the game ended shortly thereafter 26-14.
When asked about the second half struggles of his team, head coach Charles Tindol spoke on a lack of consistency. “We seemed to be mentally focused for a time, and then we lost that at certain points in the game. It was evident tonight in the third quarter. It was like the difference between night and day with our team. Good first, second, and fourth quarters, but the third quarter… I’d rather forget it, but we have to learn from it. So, we’re going to go back and try to figure out what it is that we need to do as coaches to get us on the right track toward consistency.”
From there the conversation continued the theme of improvements that the Dragons must make before district play begins. “You always want to improve on fundamentals. Blocking. Tackling. There’s always room for improvement there, but the place we need to improve the most as a team is in the mental aspect of the game.”
Sophomore quarterback/defensive back Jaylon Brinson also sees the need for improvement. “I’d like to see us improve on our running backs lead blocking and making the right cuts. We need to step up defensively and work on staying consistent.”
Shelbyville will look to rectify their consistency issues as they prepare to travel to face All Saints Tyler next Friday. This will be the Dragons’ last chance at victory before their district opener against San Augustine on October 13.