Tribe to open district by hosting Athens on homecoming – Jacksonville Daily Progress

Tribe to open district by hosting Athens on homecoming – Jacksonville Daily Progress

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Clear skies. Low near 70F. Winds light and variable.
Updated: September 22, 2022 @ 3:13 pm
The Jacksonville offensive linemen are pictured taking a breather along the sideline during last week’s 31-21 win over Pine Tree. The Indians (1-3) will host Athens (2-2) at 7:30 p.m. Friday to start District 9-4A-I play.

The Jacksonville offensive linemen are pictured taking a breather along the sideline during last week’s 31-21 win over Pine Tree. The Indians (1-3) will host Athens (2-2) at 7:30 p.m. Friday to start District 9-4A-I play.
 The stage is set for a big night at the Historic Tomato Bowl on Friday when Jacksonville plays host to Athens in the District 9-4A-I opener for both clubs.
The Indians will enter play with plenty of wind in their sails after defeating Pine Tree 31-21 last week for Jacksonville’s first win of the season. The Tribe (1-3) led 31-7 at one point.
Friday will also be homecoming in Jacksonville.
Speaking of homecoming, Athens (2-2) will come into play having lost its homecoming game to Kaufman, 35-21, last week – on the same evening that the Tribe were spoiling Pine Tree’s homecoming.
Another common thread the Indians and the Hornets share are injuries to key offensive players.
The Tribe lost the services of power back Jayden Boyd in last week’s game. Boyd suffered a season-ending knee injury.
“The news isn’t good concerning Jayden,” Jacksonville head football coach Jason Holman said. “He’s out for the year with an ACL and MCL tear. This is a big loss for us. Jayden was a great leader and a good player on both sides of the ball. Unfortunately, injuries like this are the nature of the game.”
Offensively, Boyd had proved to be a nice compliment to Jwaylon Kennedy, the Tribe’s leading rusher.
Thus the big question of what will the Jacksonville coaches do to try to replace Boyd’s productivity.
“We have several kids that we have been working with in practice this week, and we will see how well they respond,” Holman said.
That group includes Rolando Munoz, Trent Powell, Ryan Walker and perhaps even Devin McCuin, the club’s leading receiver, and one of the Tribe’s stoppers in the defensive secondary.
“I think we will put some different packages in this week,” Holman said. “I have said from the start that having an effective running game is one of the keys for us on offense, and we will continue to try to do that. We want to chew up the clock on long drives, and you do that by running the ball effectively, to give our defense a rest.”
Athens has been playing without its No. 1 quarterback, Ty Arroyo, lately, who has been nursing a shoulder injury. Arroyo did not see duty under center last week. Senior Jaxson Stiles led the Maroon and White last week.
“We don’t know who we will be seeing at quarterback for (Athens),” Holman said. “My instinct is telling me that the No. 1 quarterback will start in the district opener.”
Holman stated that the Hornets are a spread team, but they tend to favor the run about 60-percent of the time.
Regardless of the outcome of Friday’s game, the district road will get tougher for the Indians in the following two weeks when Jacksonville is scheduled to visit Kilgore and then host Chapel Hill.
Other 9-4A-1 games
Kilgore (2-2) at Palestine (2-1)
Henderson (0-4) at Lindale (2-2)
Chapel Hill (2-2), bye week
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