JDA cruises in season opener
The only thing that seemed to stop the Jefferson Davis Academy football team in Friday night’s season opener against Providence Home School was a steady downpour of rain at the start of the fourth quarter.
The rain seemingly cooled off a sizzling Jefferson Davis Academy squad that overwhelmed the Panthers in all phases of the game in a 42-8 rout.
The Panthers actually led 2-0 in this game after a safety. The Panthers’ early momentum was short-lived though. The Raiders quickly overcame a sluggish start by outscoring the Panthers 32-6 over the next two quarters.
With the win, Jefferson Davis Academy improves to 1-0. The Raiders will play at Andrew Jackson Academy Friday night.
JDA coach Michael Tindall said the team came came on after a slow start.
“We didn’t came out very focused in the first half and it showed in our performance,” Tindall said. “In the second half, we played like a different team. The execution was much better on offense and we simply played with more energy all around. ”
Offensively, the Raiders were clicking on all cylinders as they rolled up 387 yards and 15 first downs.
Unfortunately for the Panthers, it was just too much of Jimey Bozard. The Raider junior ball carrier broke numerous tackles on his way to 188 yards rushing night with three touchdowns. Bozard, who returned the opening second half kickoff 87 yards for a touchdown, averaged a whopping 37.6 yards per carry.
Joining in on the offensive onslaught were Wyatt Brant, Chance Morris, Nic Darnell and Samuel Frederick.
Brant had an efficient night, passing for 195 yards and three touchdowns on seven of 12 passes. Morris, who hauled in a 50-yard touchdown pass to start the fourth quarter, finished with three catches for 98 yards. Darnell had a 49-yard touchdown reception and Frederick a catch for 35 yards.
“Offensively, we moved the ball with a lot of success. I was very pleased with our execution, especially in the running game,” Tindall said.
The Raiders’ defense was just as impressive as its offense. The Panthers’ first three drives netted just 18 yards. Trent Jamison and Jimmy Bozard fueled the unit with nine tackles each.
Others playing well included Chance Morris with seven tackles, Paul Bazzle with six tackles and Lance Ray and Samuel Frederick with five tackles each.
“Defensively, we’re continuing to improve. On Friday night, I thought we did a good job of tackling the football and forcing mistakes,” Tindall.
Tindall said with Andrew Jackson Academy coming up next, the team can’t afford to have mental lapses.
“Andrew Jackson Academy is a very talented football team so we have to come out ready to play,” Tindall said. “They have a strong running game, so we have to play with consistency on defense.”