It has been six years since the Morristown West Trojans have had a 2-0 start to a football season.
Now with two wins heading into the third game for West, it looks for its first 3-0 start since the same year of 2014. However, winning three-straight will be no easy task as the Trojans are matched up against the Farragut Admirals for their first away game of the season.
“We are treating this game just like any other game,” head coach Alvin Sanders of West said. “We are going to spend a lot more time preparing to slow (Farragut) down offensively and get our defense up to speed with them. It’s a different challenge for us in that regard.”
The Admirals (2-1, 0-0 Region 1-6A) have beaten West (2-0, 1-0 Region 1-6A) every year since it joined Region 1-6A, but West looks to break that losing streak at Bill Clabo Field (Farragut, Tenn.) at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. Farragut came away with a 42-14 victory over West in the last meeting these tswo teams had. There is a different approach for the Trojans this time around, though, after two-straight wins to begin the season.
“Looking back on the past games with Farragut, we have played well,” Sanders said. “We have just given up too many big plays. They capitalize on our mistakes and make big play after big play. We have been able to move the football, but once we got behind in those games, we were at a disadvantage trying to get back into the game. Whenever you make a mistake against a good football team, they will make you pay.”
West is coming off a 14-7 victory against Jefferson County and a 35-0 win against Cherokee both being at home. Now West wants a road victory under its belt along with a 3-0 start.
This game will be Farragut’s first region game of the season.
The Admirals are coming off a 45-25 victory against Oak Ridge and are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball coming into Friday.
Quarterback Dawson Moore and wide receiver Matt White have shown how well they work together. The two have connected on four touchdowns so far this season.
“Farragut has always had someone that can sling the football with talented guys on the outside,” Sanders said. “This year is no different. It’s still the case for them.”
Moore has completed 18 passes to White for 273 yards through three games.
Behind Farragut’s duo is running back Dion Williams who will keep West’s offensive on their toes as he has accumulated 172 yards on 35 touches and scored two touchdowns.
“It’s the same thing we have been doing all season with making our opponents a one-dimensional football team,” Sanders said. “Right now, we have to pick our poison against (Farragut). They have a great passing attack they will have not seen yet this season. They also have a great running back that has done a great job at getting the ball downfield.”
What Farragut brings on the offensive side of the ball is something the Trojans’ defense is prepared for, though, considering they have only allowed 415 yards in their first two games.
West’s offense, however, will need its playmakers to step up facing a 4-2-5 defense they have yet to see this year.
“This is a great defense we are going up against,” Sanders said. “They play extremely fast. They bring pressure because they want to not because they have to. They do a good job at getting to the quarterback and it all starts up front with their defensive line. You never see them miss tackles.”
A lot of responsibility lays on senior quarterback Dylan Cribley and junior running back Hunter Delaney’s shoulders to create an offensive rhythm.
Fortunately, Cribley just had a game where he threw 139 yards on 13-of-18 passing and two scores, and Delaney racked up 184 yards and two rushing touchdowns.
“We still are putting our offense together,” Sanders said. “We are making steps in the running game. We have to continue to get the ball to our playmakers and be balanced. I want a balance in getting the ball to the guys that know how to score. If we can do that, we will be a hard team to defend.”
It’s a day-by-day process for the Trojans as they have a chance to grab their third win.
Sanders will face his toughest challenge of the season so far in Friday’s game.
“Our region is so tough,” Sanders said. “Everyone has a chance to beat each other, but a win (against Farragut) will put us in a good position to reach our goal of being a playoff contender. If we can get a win, we are one step closer to that goal.”