The solemn ride home Friday night after the 28-0 loss to the Hondo Owls was a dark time for all. About 150 loyal Jacket fans went to Hondo, a 115 mile trip with lots of turns in the road. The Jacket offense never got untracked. 63 yards of offense in the first half. Two bad punt snaps that set up both Owls touchdowns in the first half. An interception that lead to the third TD for Hondo. Mistakes and miss opportunities staked its claim on this game. Unfortunately, Llano had few of the breaks. Llano falls to 2-7 for the season. Hondo and Lytle play this coming Friday night to see who takes fourth place in the district and who gets to play another week. Navarro beat Wimberley, so they win the district. Llano can spoil, but not really change anything as Navarro comes to Jacket Stadium this Friday night for the last game of the season.
You see good plays, and think OK, now we have something going here. Then you have a 3rd and 9 and Hondo picks up 16! Hondo converted on 6 third down plays, and one fourth down play. The defense allowed only 252 yards on 53 plays…not bad defense, but the mistakes. Senior Austin Miller may have had his best game. Really made tackle after tackle and motor ran hot. Junior Wyatt Bauman at linebacker had a very good game. And do believe that senior Stetson Watson had his best game. Really a tough player. And Colton Ekstrom at a down lineman on defense and offensive tackle gets better every week. Outstanding play.
Senior Lance Reven having moved to tailback had his best game, running for 90 yards on 20 carries. Not sure 20 carries per contest is where Lance could help the most. Tough inside runner, and plays great at linebacker. Aaron Moss lead all receivers with 4 catches and 23 yards, while season leader Jalen Bauman returned after 6 weeks and had two catches for 12 yards. Senior Dalton Ward had his first two catches of the season and he can help plenty this week against Navarro. According to game scores by grading of the film, juniors Jose Arredondo and Juan Mungia as did senior Clayton Masters played well. Junior Colton Center and Colin Mayne had very good games.
We see younger players at this time of the year getting playing time, all for the reason of injuries, but in most cases, in reason of need. Junior Stratt Stiles and John Heflin, a sophomore are playing more. Junior Trent Dechert and Dorian Green are staking out claims for next season. Matt Cohen too plays more. And now some guy named Dillard starts making plays. Must be a recent move in! All this sets the stage for Friday night. While it is the seniors last try to win a district game, it will take plenty of effort from the younger players to pull off an upset win over Navarro. Expect them to be very good.
So, as I have in many seasons past, I give my idea of how we upset a team that is on a roll. Take notes, you don’t want to forget anything.! This will have to be a perfect storm, but perfect storms do happen.
You run Lance Reven 25 times between the tackles. Our offensive line has shown it can run block. Pass block, not so much. Few teams can stop Lance running behind Colton Center with a lead block from Wyatt Bauman. Put Jalen in the slot to match up against a linebacker. Straight down the field, in the middle, very quick, and Holden throws the short one. Come back with Dalton and Kasin running hooks all night, until late in the game, a hook and go. Put Aaron with Lance, fake into the line with him often, and then use as a drop off when there is a big pass rush. He has good hands. If Trevor and Airon get in, use their speed over the middle…15 yard type passes. Not long passes. And, slow the game down…Navarro will put up the numbers…no reason to let them have 60 plays.
And the defense will have to play its best game. I’d use Austin, Stetson Watson and Colton Ekstrom to crash the middle, with more linebacker blitzes, and do something we are not use to doing. A more aggressive defense might foil the Navarro offense. You take risk, but what do you have to loss? Navarro will be picked by Harris to beat the Jackets by 30 points. Lets play this one to win, and to have fun. These seniors deserve to go out with a great memory, and playing the daylights out of the District Champ would be one wonderful moment. Play hard, play clean, and make this the best game of the year for the Fighting Llano Yellowjackets
Llano 21 Navarro 15