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SPORTS UPDATE: Rebels stay unbeaten smashing Yellowjackets

By Thomas Sellers Jr.

TRA Football 1 TRA Football 2 TRA Football Jake Roane TRA Football Mac Fullen full view TRA Football Mac FullenThe Greenfield Yellowjackets much rather been dealing with ‘Jake’ from State Farm instead the Tipton-Rosemark Academy Rebels Friday night on Rebel Field.

Instead the visitors east of Dyersburg made the trip to take on TRA standouts like Jake Massey and Jake Roane. The Jakes joined forces with several other teammates to cruise to a 37-0 victory.

The No. 9 Rebels improved to 3-0 on the season and have outscored their last two opponents 101-0.

It feels great,” TRA quarterback Donald Crowe said. “Probably hasn’t felt this good since I was a freshman. I don’t think we started 3-0, but it was pretty good. This moment now just feels great.”

The great feelings started in the first quarter when Mac Fullen broke a couple of big runs on the opening drive. Crowe capped it off with a 1-yard QB sneak to make the score 7-0 at the 9:52 mark.

Greenfield tried to answer but Rebel Carter Weakley terminated those plans with a leaping interception near the sideline. The TRA offense set up shop at the 33-yard-line.

Mac Fullen broke loose for another big gain. This time resulting in a 14-yard TD and a 14-0 advantage.

To create a little extra insurance it was time for the Rebels to hand the ball to Jake Roane. With 2 minutes and 15 seconds remaining in the first quarter, Roane exploded through the Yellowjackets for a 21-yard touchdown run.

I think after we got up 21-0, you could see the focus leave our eyes,” TRA Head Coach Colin Pinner acknowledged. “I told the kids, ‘In those situations, you’ve got to learn to execute until we pull you off. You’re job is to be a dog until we pull you back.’”

After the Roane TD made it 21-0, TRA only managed 9 points in the second quarter.

Weakley did have another INT making a leaping catch over the middle. The Rebels made another big defensive play courtesy of Jared LaFosse’s safety to make the tally 23-0.

Before the half, the Rebel offense filed another policy with Roane. This time Jake reached the end zone from 33 yards away to make the halftime score 30-0.

Crowe said despite the second quarter being sluggish, the overall success Friday night was because of the offensive line leading the way.

The whole team is responsible for the 3-0 start,” the senior said. “Last year it was a new offense and coach. We tried to get the offense down. Now we’re starting to work better as a whole team. We’re a lot more experienced and we have a lot of returning players.

Everyone is working together, communicating and keeping our heads up,” Crowe added. “And we’re playing hard. It was blocking. Our linemen were doing good tonight making holes. They never give up on a play.”

In the second half, TRA Defensive Coordinator Shannon O’Brien wanted that second straight goose egg after beating Rossville 64-0 the previous week. The Rebels held the Yellowjackets (1-3) out of the end zone.

The final claim of the goal line on the night came courtesy of the air and Jake Massey. Crowe dropped back and hit Massey from 20-yards out in the third quarter to make the score 37-0.

When I got the job a lot of people asked me, ‘How do you turn the program around?’” Pinner recalled. “To become a winning program, you’ve got to win. A lot of game here I feel we can compete in. The kids have done a good job. We’ve shut out two straight opponents. I don’t know the last time that’s been done or the last time we’ve started 3-0.

Now we’ve got to get ready for a long road trip. But I do know we can compete.”

TRA will travel to Zion Christian Academy in Columbia to take on the Eagles next Friday night. Both Crowe and Pinner said the Rebels should not be satisfied with the undefeated start.

There’s a lot we need to be working on,” Crowe said. “You’ve always got to keep improving and getting better. We have harder teams on our schedule coming up toward the end of the year. So we do need to keep working.”

Pinner said the work won’t be as quick as a 30-second TV ad, but it will be TRA’s insurance policy to be a competitive team in the remaining 7 regular season games.

I think we’re going to actually go back to just more physical practices,” he concluded. “Kind of getting after it a little bit more. And refocusing on doing the little things right like blocking and tackling. Tonight I saw a lot of bust. Maybe we’re getting a little too tricky for ourselves. We have do go back to the basics and be physical at the point of attack.”

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