Yellow Jackets Lose at Home in Blackout Game 44-28


Story and Photo by Brennan Waldorf

In a battle of the trenches the Jackets came out empty as the Windsor Dukes were more physical upon contact and controlled the line of scrimmage. With good blocking the Windsor Dukes were able to run the ball all game throwing only one pass in the first half.

The Jackets were first to put points on the board in the first quarter after a successful drive, which featured several running plays, resulted in a fumble inside the 10-yard line. The opening drive on defense looked promising for the Jackets as they gang tackled and stuffed the Duke runners at the line. The Dukes’ only pass of the half was a pick six, intercepted by Landon Custis inside the Dukes’ 20. The Jackets would go for two but failed on a sweep that resulted in Northampton going up 6-0.

Back on defense, the Jackets continued to find success as the Dukes attempted to run the ball up the middle several times eventually fumbling the ball on the Northampton 35-yard line. The Jackets would deploy their running offense and after a 12-play series, they would find the end zone on second and goal when Liam Flynn tucked the ball and crossed the plane for the Jackets second touchdown of the night. Liam and company would then go for two, passing to a wide open Landen Sayers that would put them up 14-0.

The Windsor Dukes were down but not out as they leaned heavily on the legs of senior Daequan Garris who gashed the Jackets for several yards running in between the tackles all night. After a series of runs up the middle, Malik Lee first found the end zone on a 20-yard scamper to the left. The Jackets burst through the line and caused a fumble on the Dukes’ 2-point conversion attempt, putting the score at 14-6.

The Jackets received the ball on their own 36 and would run that ball successfully but would rack up penalties that had them facing a third-and-26. They attempted a pass over the middle to Dustin Splawn who resembled Odell Beckham Jr. as he attempted to corral the pass one handedly. The incompletion would have the Jackets punt but a bad snap had Landon Custis dodging Dukes in an open backfield ultimately fumbling the ball on the Jackets’ 21-yard line. The Dukes  capitalized on the play and scored on a single running play up the middle, followed by another run up the middle for the 2-point conversion locking the score at 14. The Jackets recorded seven first downs compared to the Dukes’ six but would be down at the half 22-14.

The pattern continued in the second half as the Jackets found themselves in a losing battle at the line of scrimmage, suffering from several runs up the middle that put the game away. With the young Jacket players now in the middle of the season they’ve become acclimated to the speed but “just have to put ourselves in better positions to be successful,” said head coach Edney of the young defense. 

The Dukes would come out on top with 310 rushing yards, finishing the game 44-28 and moving to 2-1 for the season. Dustin Splawn led rushing for the Jackets with 115 yards on 13 carries and one touchdown. Gavin Brittingham led the defense with 11 tackles and a fumble, and Landon Custis recorded two interceptions and a touchdown. The Jackets will be back in action at home Sept. 27, facing West Point for a 7 p.m. homecoming showdown.

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