The ascending Chiefs took down the descending Yellow Jackets, 35-7, at Skip Pope Stadium.
Sequoyah coach James Teter attributed the well-rounded effort to what he said was the strongest week of practice this group has had in 2013.
“I just think we were really focused all week long, and our kids played really, really well,” Teter said. “That’s probably our best week of practice, so I was very proud of them.”
The Chiefs’ defense was stout out of the gates, limiting the visiting Yellow Jackets (1-4) to minus-9 yards of total offense and no first downs in the opening half. Overall, Sprayberry tallied just 143 total yards.
“(Sequoyah) got after us, and they played better than us. They outhustled us. You’ve got to give kudos to those guys,” Yellow Jackets coach Billy Shackelford said. “Also, I take a lot of responsibility myself. I’ve got to do a better job and, obviously, my team was not ready, and that’s my responsibility. We did not have a good week of practice and, ultimately, that’s my fault.”
A surprise factor for Sequoyah (3-1) was special teams.
In the first quarter, Chiefs senior D.J. Austin returned a punt to the Yellow Jackets’ 43-yard line, beginning a drive that would end three plays later with junior Adam Patterson scampering 31 yards on a toss sweep for his team’s second touchdown.
On Sequoyah’s next possession, Sprayberry return man Eric Wells coughed up the punt, extending a 13-play drive that would also result in a six points.
Senior Jake Garner led the Chiefs’ offense with 21 carries for 138 yards and two touchdowns. In all, Sequoyah’s offense piled on 497 yards on a Sprayberry defense that could never stop the bleeding.
The Yellow Jackets’ only scoring drive was its opening series after halftime, as junior quarterback Shane Young marched his offense 74 yards, punching it in himself from 13 yards out.
Four losses before the end of September wasn’t was Sprayberry’s coach had in mind at the start of the campaign. With a bye week on the docket ahead of the Yellow Jackets’ subregion opener at Riverwood, he promised to get Friday’s mistakes sorted out.
“We’re going to come back with a new sense of energy and focus. … I have no doubt in our team, no doubt in my coaches, and we’ll get it right,” Shackelford said.