Turnovers are something football coaches, at all levels, talk about as being key to the outcome of a game.
It’s not just coach talk. All one has to do is look at last Friday’s game between Winder-Barrow and Clarke Central to see how turnovers can affect the outcome of a contest.
The Bulldoggs were hampered by turnovers and what might have been a competitive game otherwise ended up a onesided 56-12 loss to visiting Clarke Central.
“We gave them 14 points on two turnovers early and they scored on another late,” WBHS head coach Ben Corley said. “When you do that against a team like that, you put yourself in a tough situation for sure.”
Another aspect of the contest which Corley remains concerned about is third down on both sides of the football.
“We played better defensively, but we are still having trouble on third down,” the coach said. “We are having a hard time finishing off a drive. We had 270 yards of offense, but several times we weren’t able to finish drives because of a turnover or a penalty or a dropped pass. Still, we showed some improvement.”
The Bulldoggs took the game’s opening kick and started at their own 30-yard line. After picking up a first down, WBHS lost possession on a fumble. Four plays later, Clarke Central would find the endzone on a 14-yard run with 7:32 left in the opening quarter.
A mishandled snap on a punt attempt by the Bulldoggs on their next series led to the second score for the Gladiators. Clarke Central recovered the football at the WBHS 9-yard line and needed just one play to stretch the lead to 14-0.
The Bulldoggs moved into Clarke Central territory on their third offensive series of the first half completing one fourth down conversion along the way. However, on a fourth and 7 from the Gladiator 33, an interception would stop the drive.
Clarke Central would then methodically march 87 yards to move in front by three scores just as the second quarter began.
The win improved the Gladiators to 7-0 overall and guarantees the team a spot in the upcoming playoffs.
WBHS will look to end the 2009 season on a positive note when it travels to Loganville this Friday for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff. Corley wants his team to play well so it can use the contest as a springboard to the offseason program. See a preview of the contest on page 1B in today’s edition.
Robby Lotspeich (10) makes a tackle against Clarke Central last week in the final home game of 2009 for Winder-Barrow High School. - Photo by Jessica Brown
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