Mitchell offense comes alive
The offense came alive with a vengeance Friday night in Mitchell’s home opener against Cabarrus at Memorial Stadium with seven touchdowns scored by seven different players. In the week of practice between Week 1 and Week 2, there was a concerted effort for offensive improvement and concentration. By halftime Friday, it was apparent the Mountaineers had responded.
Noah Pitman got things going for the offense with a 55-yard run early in the first quarter. Following Pitman was Ty Sparks with a 12-yard run, Logan Hudgins on a 15-yard run and Tyler McKinney with a 1-yard touchdown reception. Garrison Phillips returned a 33 interception for a score for the other first-half score.
In the second half, the offense continued to put up points with Cameron Greene’s 11-yard run, Hunter Zheng’s 2-yard run, and Harrison Horney’s 48-yard run. At the end of the game, the Mountaineers had amassed 465 yards. So, it is fair to say it was a complete night of work for the offense.
The defense turned in another solid performance, limiting the Warriors’ offense to 82 total yards, recovering a fumble and snatching a pair of interceptions. Caius Peterson has been a force on defense for the Mountaineers. He led the way Friday with eight tackles (three for a loss) and a quarterback hurry. Tanner Duncan also turned in a good night with seven tackles and Matthew Gilbert had five. These young men were leaders for the defense.
It is time to polish game performances entering the third game of the season. At this point in the season, most of the offensive and defensive schemes have been installed. In the next weeks, it will be vital for everything to begin to work effectively. Throughout the season, opponents will get better each week. There are no nights off for the Mountaineers. Looking at the Western Highlands Conference in the early going this season, it seems as if the conference race will be a dog fight every week; every team in the conference has shown improvement from a year ago.
Next up for the Mountaineers is Trinity Academy. The challenge for the team this week will be to stay focused and stay crisp with every phase of play. It is essential to continue working hard in practice and getting better at doing things on the field. The coaches and young men on the team don’t know a lot about Trinity other than what is shown on game film. Because Trinity is an out-of-state team, not much is known about them. Traditionally, Trinity has fielded a competitive team that has gotten better with each week of the season. So, regardless of record, Trinity can’t be taken lightly.
Make plans to attend this second home game of the 2019 season. The youth football teams will be recognized on the field with the Mountaineers. This has been a fun night in past years.
There was a great home crowd this past Friday, and the coaches and players hope to see an even bigger crowd this week. Be sure to wear purple and show support for the current and future Mitchell players.
Chris Pitman gains his views from 40 years of involvement with Mitchell Athletics.