Meadowview not perfect, still impressive
On the scoreboard, it was everything it should have been for last year’s AISA Class AA state runner-up.
But Meadowview coach Rick Jackson doesn’t even need to look at the film to know there are several things he doesn’t like about Friday night’s game.
Despite any mistakes, the Trojans scored often enough and quickly enough to walk away with a 34-6 home win against Jackson Academy to open their season.
“All I know is we won the football game, but I think we did everything possible to shoot ourselves in the foot,” Jackson said. “I’m thankful for the win, but you can see we’ve got a lot of work to do.”
The coach was probably talking about the penalties that were a problem right from the get-go.
A 20-0 lead after halftime could very well have been two touchdowns more. A block in the back wiped out J.R. Lowe’s punt return for a touchdown that would have given Meadowview its second touchdown midway through the first quarter.
A penalty also negated a Davis Jones fumble return for a touchdown late in the third.
Quarterback Randal Hamilton missed a receiver going toward the corner of the end zone in the second quarter that would have been another easy touchdown.
But when Meadowview’s scheme was working, it really was working, and Hamilton and Lowe were the sparks.
Hamilton began the game with a 29-yard kickoff return that set the Trojans up with first-and-10 on the Eagles’ 46. Three plays later, including two passes to Lowe, the big receiver was galloping in the end zone with a 14-yard score.
Hamilton showed off his legs late in the first, scampering in and out of tackles to score a 49-yard touchdown with 1:54 left. A 2-point conversion made Meadowview’s lead 14-0.
Hamilton went 13-for-17 passing with 169 yards and two touchdowns.
“We’re getting it done, but it’s going to take a lot of work,” Hamilton said. “We went deep to J.R., the big guy down there. We worked the field good, and we saw the field good, but we should have been a whole lot better than that.”
Jones scored the first of his two touchdowns, knocking down defenders and falling into the end zone to give the Trojans a 20-0 lead with 11:17 left in the first half.
The Trojans took advantage of a younger, smaller Eagles team all night, especially on defense.
The Eagles lost four fumbles, the biggest reason their offense was in a continual stall.
The first time they got past the 50-yard line was when quarterback Jamie Rone finished a 68-yard drive on a 22-yard touchdown with 3:03 left in the third quarter.
Even with the score, Meadowview held a 28-point gap.
Ultimately, Jackson’s evaluation of his team was simple: they did what they needed to do, but they need to do more.
“We thought we could hurt them in the passing game, and we did that,” Jackson said. “We made some big plays, but we’ve got a long way to go, a long way to go.”