Dragons Face Tough Test vs Yellow Jackets
Sep 09, 2016 10:44AM
● By Mike
Somehow, someway, the Dragons always manage to bounce back under 10th year head coach Hal Wasson. Since 2007, they have only lost ten regular season games. In the following game, however, the Dragons have won each one by an average of 23 points.
After falling to Tulsa Union 21-10 in the opener, Southlake’s team rebounded with a 37-14 thrashing of a talented Arlington Martin squad. So how does Wasson explain his program’s uncanny knack for resiliency?
“It’s a combination of things,” Wasson said. “Union was an elite team, and we didn’t capitalize on opportunities. Martin was a very good team, but we went in with a better mindset and played with a lot of energy. We gave a really good effort.”
This week, Southlake Carroll takes on another solid opponentin Rockwall Despite their 0-2 record, the Yellow Jackets have a ton of playmakers on the field and present a dangerous challenge.
“They’ve been a little snake bit,” Wasson said. “They have a really good football team. They made a deep run in the playoffs last year. They played two really good football teams and have made some mistakes that have really hurt them. It’s going to be a test because they are desperate for a win.”
As Wasson mentioned, both of Rockwall’s losses came to came to quality programs in Highland Park and Rowlett. In those two games, the Yellow Jackets gave up more than 30 points.
While Rockwall has one of the best inside linebackers in the country in Alston Orji, the defense has been susceptible to the big play, which means the Dragons might go vertical early and often, especially with their newest receiving weapon Robert Barnes. In week 2 Barnes caught 6 receptions for 153 yards and was named First Financial Bank's Player of the Week.
“Robert will be playing receiver for us again,” Wasson said. “That’s a permanent move. He gave us a lift. Hopefully, he will continue to make others around him even better. He has excellent playmaking ability.”
Southlake Carroll was stout against the run last week but will have to prepare for a heavy air attack from Rockwall. The Yellow Jackets run the spread and have a go-to playmaker in wide receiver Sam Crawford, who holds an astounding 20 FBS offers.
“Crawford is a big play guy,” Wasson said. “You have to know where he is on the field at all times. He’s a deep ball threat. Their quarterback (Matt Jones) has been impressive. He’s an effective passer and runner. We have to stay disciplined.
“Overall, we just have to be better on both sides of the ball in the red zone. That comes with discipline.”