It's the Yellow Jackets Football Week 0 Blog...by Lynn Burkhead, exclusively on mySherDenBuzz.com! Each week, Jackets play-by-play voice Lynn Burkhead will have a writeup on the game, breaking down what happened on the field and what it means moving forward. This week, Lynn shares his in-depth analysis of DHS' 34-3 loss to Kennedale Friday night at Munson Stadium, in the 2010 opener. Special thanks to Katy Country, 93.1 FM!
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YELLOW JACKETS FOOTBALL WEEK 0 BLOG...BY DENISON RADIO'S LYNN BURKHEAD
Youth, Inexperience Show in Jackets Opening Night Loss
-- What a difference a year can make.
With 18 starters gone from the Yellow Jackets' ranks after their graduation walk across the stage back in early June, a slew of new faces put on the varsity black-and-gold for the first time on Friday night at Munson Stadium.
With those new starters came plenty of questions as a capacity home crowd filled the stands.
By night's end, a 34-3 opening night thumping at the hands of the 3A Kennedale Wildcats (1-0) left Denison (0-1) fans filing out of Munson Stadium with few answers.
And even more questions.
Obviously, this year's squad is not the same 13-2 bunch that lost in last year's Class 4A Div. II semi-finals to eventual state champ Aledo.
Nor is it the same group whose 12-1 season in 2008 was ignited by a furious come-from-behind 44-43 victory over Sherman in the final game of 2007.
Instead, this is a new group of youthful Jackets that will have to learn on the go as they seek to earn their place in the storied history of Denison football.
While the game started with plenty of enthusiasm from the Jackets and their boisterous fans, it didn't take long for Kennedale to serve notice that they were intent on improving from their 11-2 third round playoff run from a year ago.
After snuffing out the Jackets opening possession of the 2010 season, Kennedale used its unfamiliar Wing-T offense to march to three methodical scores in the first half.
By intermission, Kennedale led 20-0 and had amassed nearly 300 yards of offense, including 99 yards on a workman-like 10-play second quarter drive that seemed to break the Yellow Jackets’ spirit.
While Kennedale's only miscue of the first half was a botched PAT attempt on a low snap, the Yellow Jackets were never able to get their offense in gear at all.
By half, Denison had mustered barely more than 50 yards of total offense.
Despite being thoroughly outplayed in the first two quarters, the Jackets started with a bang in the third stanza by recovering a fumble on the second half kick-off.
But after starting at the Wildcats' 22-yard line, Denison couldn't move the ball and was forced to settle for a 39-yard field goal attempt by junior place-kicker Dalton Hestand. His try fell just short of the uprights.
While the Jacket O was unable to get going early in the third, Denison's defense found a spark and held Kennedale deep in their own territory for the first time all night.
A high snap on the ensuing Wildcat punt set Denison up at the Kennedale 25 yard line.
But again, the offense was mired in the proverbial mud and had to settle for Hestand's 34-yard field goal to cut the score to 20-3.
While Denison's defense held Kennedale to less than 20 yards of total offense in the third quarter, the Wildcats were able to put the game away for good in the fourth quarter.
The final score of the night came courtesy of a 44-yard scamper by Kennedale running back Bo Burgess who finished the night with 200 yards rushing on 15 carries and two touchdowns.
His effort was followed up by fullback Tony Sabando's 115 yard night and a touchdown. Quarterback Stephen Rivera accounted for the Wildcats’ other two touchdowns as he directed the relentless ground control offense.
For Denison, there was very little to smile about from the stat sheet.
Overall, the Jackets finished the night right at the century mark in terms of total offense.
Senior running back Stacy Golston accounted for 40 yards rushing on 8 carries with junior back Elijah Butler finishing with 37 yards rushing on six carries.
Junior quarterback Jordan Watson was 4-10-0 for 3 yards passing while chipping in 20 yards rushing on 14 carries.
With the loss, White suffered an opening night defeat for the first time in his four-year tenure at DHS.
And finally, the loss snapped a 10-game home winning streak at Munson Stadium.