TWO weeks ago, Jefferson was dealt its first loss since August of 2012 at the hands of AAA powerhouse North Hall, 41-34.
While the 16-game win streak is broken, the Dragons spirits certainly are not.
Jefferson head coach Ben Hall’s squad is coming off of a bye week, and has had plenty of time to analyze their performance against North Hall.
“I think we’ve tried to find the positives in our game with North Hall,” said Hall. “Our team realizes that they played a really strong opponent and went toe-to-toe with them. That game has gone down to the wire for the last four years, and we have split 2-2 with them. We did a lot of things well in that game and we’ve done our best to build off that and correct the mistakes that we made.”
The Dragons now turn their attention to Green County, Jefferson’s first region opponent of the season.
The Tigers are 1-2 on the season thus far, but Hall is not underestimating the athleticism of Green County’s playmakers.
“They are the most athletic team we’ve seen,” Hall added. “The game with Green County will be like night and day. North Hall was a big physical power team. Green County is more of a ‘speed and spread’ team, so we’ll have to transition. We’ve been working on that for the last week and a half.”
The Tiger offense bases out of an I-formation, but runs several spread plays as well.
“They use multiple quarterbacks and they like to run with (the quarterback),” said Hall. “They also have several athletes that they like to get in space and get the ball to.”
Hall expects the Tigers to show several blitz packages so the Dragon offensive line will need to play well to protect Jefferson quarterback, Evan Shirreffs in the pocket.
“They blitz a lot and show a lot of man coverage,” Hall said. “They do what they are built to do. They are athletic and they look to put pressure on you with their athleticism.”
The Dragons made short work of Green County last year, winning the contest 62-26.
Jefferson will look for similar results when the Dragons host the Tigers on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.
“Games from this point on are the ones that really matter in terms of putting yourself in contention for a region championship and playoff berth,” said Hall. “We are going to treat every game from here on out like a playoff game.”