Working out the kinks… Elizabethton takes advantage of fall break to tweak areas of weakness

Published 12:22 am Friday, October 11, 2019

The Elizabethton Cyclones get back into conference action this week as they make another long bus ride to the Knoxville area, more specifically Maynardsville, to take on  Union County after having to overcome adversity late last week on the road at William Blount to take a 31-17 win on a late fourth-quarter rally.
Head coach Shawn Witten couldn’t really put his hand on what was going on after last week’s contest but after taking time to review the game film with his coaches and players, Witten feels like they have been able to work through some issues that were spotted and make repairs to fix those areas heading into this week’s contest.
“This week was fall break and right now these guys are hungry to get back to work,” said Witten. “We got back into the weight room and had time to reflect about last Friday’s game and using that as a learning experience.
“Sometimes it’s hard to evaluate without seeing film. It makes me more proud after the gutsy win like that than a 45-0 win like the week before.”
Against William Blount, the Cyclones were in a position that they hadn’t faced all season and that was trailing in a ballgame. The Governors jumped out 7-0 before the Cyclones evened it at 7-7. Then the Governors continued to edge out until the game was 17-17 and a big interception by defensive back Jake Roberts turned the tide giving Elizabethton their first lead at 24-17.
A Deuce Morton pick-six late in the game sealed the victory with a 31-17 win.
“That’s the first time we didn’t have a lead,” Witten said. “From the first series, things didn’t go our way until the last seven minutes of the game turned our way. We were able to finally make two more plays than they did.”
The Cyclone skipper went on to say, “The offense, defense, and special teams got back to work because there were some plays that we didn’t execute well. That made things difficult for us and definitely gave us some things to work on.
“William Blount gave different looks for our line and they gave Bryson (Rollins) some different looks to confuse him. Our guys are just chomping at the bit to get back on the field.”
The Cyclones enter this week with a 6-0 overall record and are ranked second in the state rankings in Class 4-A just behind Greeneville. Witten, however, feels that this team has exceeded far and above his expectations as any other team that he has coached.
“For six games, we have played as well as we have in the 13 years that I have been here,” Witten stated. “We are getting better defensively and are running the ball offensively a lot better.
“We have forged some identities on the field. Our special teams are getting better as well.”
Kickoff for tonight’s game is 7:30 pm.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox