By Charlie Chitwood
HUGHES SPRINGS – Brawler versus knock-out artist. Hughes Springs was hoping last week to limit the number of times that Trey Hodge said “hike.” The host Mustangs were able to follow enough of their plan to have a decided advantage in the number of plays run – 74-31 – but found that Jefferson had some punchers of its own, accounting for five Hughes Springs fumbles in the Dawgs’ 42-22 victory. The win for Jefferson – still undefeated at 7-0 and sporting a 2-0 mark in District 8-3A play – checked off several boxes on a season-long list.
Foremost was how the Dawgs – truly unchallenged in their previous three games (plus a bye week) – would respond to being hit in mouth. The response was a Jefferson defense that bent but rarely broke against the balled-up fist that is Hughes Springs’ offense. The Mustangs pounded and pounded inside, moving the chains deliberately 25 times without busting any plays longer than 20 yards, but either couldn’t get into the end zone or had the ball knocked away by Jefferson defenders – one of which was returned 50 yards for a Bulldog score by Kepha Luster.
Talking to Antwain Jimmerson, it’s clear the Bulldog skipper had expectations that were matched by the outcome.
“One of the things we DID get to do in that three-game stretch (of shutouts) was work on our technique and communication,” Jimmerson said. “We really did get a lot better in that regards. I’m pretty happy about that.”
And who wouldn’t be?
Pre-Season All State defensive end Taylor “Man-Man” Smith is already near the century mark in tackles with 93, steadily wreaking havoc upon opposing offenses. The senior already has 11 tackles-for-loss and four sacks to go along with nine quarterback hurries and three forced fumbles. Over at the OTHER end of the defensive line, junior Eric Gipson has clearly found his niche with 77 tackles – 20 of them TFL’s – and is the team-leader in…
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