The Fighting Llano Yellowjackets found their sting. The seniors played like there were no more tomorrows. And gang tackling became the norm Friday night as the Jackets won for the second time on the road by the score of 34-13. The 2-3 Jackets begin District play this Friday night against very old rival Wimberley.
Despite the whining this week by cry babies and enablers, the Llano Yellowjackets knew one thing…it is what is in ones heart that really matters in life. If it were up to size, speed, and number of players on the sidelines, Llano need not travel. Going way back, George Scott, Austin Charlton and Ty Thurman would have been water boys. Instead they were… and are legends. Someone forgot to tell them they were too small and too slow.
I told the 2014 Jackets last week they might be in the later category. They forgot to listen. When I saw senior Cody Harp pulling around and down the line and doing his best Larry Allen impression, I knew something was different. When I saw senior center Colin Mayne crush a linebacker, and two plays later, in the fourth quarter sprint with all of his energy to be the first Jacket downfield on a punt, I knew these seniors had DNA. And when I saw Llano coaches finally give senior Aaron Moss some help at running back with senior Lance Reven, junior Wyatt Bauman and junior Dorian Green I knew the coaching staff was still looking for answers. When Llano lined up in the I formation, this was a team looking for ways to win. People of football know what I am talking about.
Can’t believe how impressed I was with the offensive line play. Junior Luke Snitkin, senior Kasin Riley, Mayne, Harp, senior Steton Watson, junior Jose Arredondo, seniors Colton Ekstrom, Clayton Masters, junior Stratt Stiles and senior Dalton Ward all turned their game around. Should each improve next week as they did this past week, the Texans could be in for a long night. Senior Harley Smith really played hard and several times he looked like he was having fun running through folks. Harley went down with a leg injury in the second half and hope is he will return soon. Really like the play of 5’5, 230 pound Juan Mungia. Played like he was 6’5, but I guess someone forgot to well Juan he needed to be taller.
The Jackets 99 yard drive in the first quarter on 12 plays was nothing short of just spectacular. Moss, Bauman at fullback (an old position many in football have forgotten about), Reven, sophomore John Heflin all carried the ball. Five first downs, one fourth down try with success, Llano was hitting on all cylinders. OH Yea, I nearly forgot, Holden Simpson, senior quarterback had his best game. Simpson throwing to junior Airon Layton for 44 yards, and TD pass to senior Tommy Yelvington for the final 6 finished Llano’s best offensive drive this season. Tommy caught two TD passes Friday night and now has 17 catches for 220 yards. He will not make us forget Jalen Bauman who had surgery this past week, but he sure is making Jalen proud. He and Layton and Moss all are sure handed receivers.
The drive in the fourth quarter covered 72 yards and 15 plays. Great line blocking, pass completions to Moss and Airon for the TD score, the game was complete. Yelveinton picked up another interception, as did junior Cody Miller. Miller I think has 6 picks for the season. Remarkable 155 pound safety playing like John Lynch!
Really have liked the kicking game all season. Simpson’s punting with great effort in coverage has made this phase so successful. Ward, senior Rhett Levington, junior Dalton Dewveall hustle hard every play. So does #5, Trent Decker..going to be good. They make this part really good. Senior kicker David Forrister is just hard to beat. Also like to see that Llano lets David kick deep. Jackets have good coverage.
The defense played like they did against Bangs. Cody Miller, Reven, and senior Austin Miller lead this hard hitting group. They wrap up and don’t just throw their bodies at runners. Ekstrom, Bauman, and Green have really started to get good. And junior Wyatt Casey gets overlooked in the secondary when you have Miller and Yelvington to compare with, but Casey makes a lot of plays. This may be best Llano secondary in many many years. And what do you say about senior Trevor Penny? The 160 pound lineman is so quick…one of the best at what he does.
Seniors, it does not get easier, but it could be more fun. Wimberley has made life not pleasant on Yellowjackets in recent years. I think we beat them in 2001. At Wimberley! We have not played them every year in the past. Their 2-3 record and they have played some good teams. They will be tough at home, but that seems good for Llano. Looks like the Jackets can pour all energy into this misplaced district contest, then take week off before the final three district games. The Texans have two great players in Wes Lambert and quarterback Colton Cerday, both all-district last season. This is a great challenge for Llano. Texas Football picked the Jackets last in 13-4A in preseason. Llano will win. Watch the Jacket lineman. We win on the line, and we win this game.
Llano 24 Wimberley 20