Attention to small details pivotal for Warrior success

Published 9:30 am Tuesday, September 6, 2022

STAR CORRESPONDENT
It will be an old school rivalry Friday night on Warrior Hill when the Unicoi County Blue Devils come calling for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
When looking at the previous two games the Warriors have played, it doesn’t appear that the Blue Devils have much to worry about but Happy Valley head coach Jason Jarrett had a different take on the outcomes of the contests against Chuckey Doak and South Greene.
“The scoreboard the last two weeks looks like we haven’t heard the gun go off but if you go back and look at the film, we are doing some really good things,” Jarrett said. “For example after we muffed that punt against South Greene, on the very first play we had a breakdown in the secondary and gave up a score and was down 7-0. Right after that we put a big drive together to get down in the red zone and was facing a second and five in the red zone then had a penalty and made an errant throw. We also put another big drive together in the second half trailing 13-0 and we fumble on the one-foot line going into the end zone. We are doing some really good things.”
In comparison to last year’s team, Jarrett believes that his 2022 Warrior team is huge steps ahead in their progress this season and is just looking for his team to come together and gel into a group that plays with consistency throughout the game.
“We are a much more competitive team at this point than what we were last year – we just have to get more consistency,” said Jarrett. “It looks like we are not doing the small things. It looks like we are not doing the small details, let me say that. Those things that we are consistently working on are not translating to the field. For the last two weeks we have had problems catching punts and kickoffs. Last week, we had 15 to 20 minutes in practice that was all that we worked on. We muffed another punt this week that led to their first touchdown.”
Jarrett admitted that a lot of the inconsistency is shooting his team in the foot in their ability to compete against their opponents and for the Warriors to right their ship, they have to not worry about their opponents but stay focused on themselves and what they have to do to stay competitive against whatever team that they play.
“We turned it over six times against South Greene and you can’t do that and beat anybody, much less a really good team and every team we have played has been a really good team,” said Jarrett.  “We have to worry about us and that’s what we talked about today during film and weights. It doesn’t matter necessarily who we are playing – everybody is getting coached, everybody has good athletes but Happy Valley has to worry about Happy Valley. We have to quit turning the football over, we have to do the small things that have been present ever since the game has started to be played.”
Jarrett added that the game really hasn’t changed that much other than the competition has gotten bigger and faster.
“It’s just blocking, tackling, catching, throwing, and doing the fundamentals of the game and we have to string those together in a consistent manner in order to give ourselves a chance and if we do that, I think this football team is going to be okay,” he said.
“We have seven games left and there is a lot left to possibly win there. We still have our goals which is a home playoff game in front of us. I think in all of our games we can be competitive. It’s just a matter of going out and putting it together. I like our kids and I think that we have good enough athletes that we can do that. We just have to make the plays.”
There is no doubt that the Warriors (1-2) will have their hands full against the Blue Devils (3-0) who were ranked sixth in the state in Class 3-A last week.
“Unicoi is going to be one of the most athletic teams that we face,” said Jarrett. “They probably have 70 kids on the roster and their whole backfield is back. They have a good quarterback and receivers and can sling the ball around. It’s an old-school rivalry. These are the types of weeks that you show up with pep in your step each day because you know who you are playing and we have that two weeks in a row with Unicoi and Hampton.”

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