After a loss to cross-town rival Anderson County, the Clinton Dragons look to get back in the win column this Friday. The Dragons (1-2) will be at home for the first time this season, and it comes at a good time. The Powell Panthers (3-1, 1-1) come to town after defeating Karns 49-27 in region play last week. The match-up will be Clinton’s first District game of the season, and another good test for the Dragons.
“We are at home, that’s a huge advantage for us,” said Clinton Head Coach Randy McCamey.
Offensively, Clinton’s Flexbone offense is not easy to defend. Plus, it allows the Dragons to put the ball in the hands of their playmakers early and often. Last week, the Dragons seemed to find a rhythm only on their opening drive.
Even when the Dragons scored 34 points in a one-point loss to Seymour, they scored all of their points in the second half.
Most of the time, playing one half of football does not result in a win.
Clinton needs to reestablish that rhythm and find some consistency, if they want to be successful on Friday night.
However, establishing that rhythm, while being efficient in doing so, will be the Dragons’ biggest challenge against the visiting Panthers.
Powell shut out their first two opponents, but gave up a season-high 27 points last week.
Clinton relies so heavily on their run game, that it can make or break them. Look for Clinton’s senior running back Josh Breeden and senior wideout Isiah Washington to get most of the touches. Both of them are explosive, and can score anytime they touch the ball.
Last week, the Dragons threw the ball only 10 times. While it was effective at times, expect senior quarterback Luke Harrison to try to make more of an impact on the game this week, even if the number of passes is similar to last week.
“We’re going to throw the ball six or eight times a game, and if we complete half of that—that’s balance,” said McCamey.
Defensively, there are a lot of questions and concerns after giving up 580-plus yards. The Dragons saw an explosive offense last week at Anderson County and were unable to get off the field on third downs — the Mavericks went six of nine for the game. Clinton needs to be better in that category.
Additionally, the Dragons’ defensive line was pushed around last week, and needs to improve against the Panthers. “Our kids have to realize, we need to make plays and get them (Powell) off the field,” said McCamey.
Since it is Clinton’s first home game, emotions should be at a high level, and the Dragons should have plenty to be pumped up about.
However, Clinton’s region is a challenging one, and Powell is nothing less than a formidable opponent.
If the Dragons beat the Panthers on Friday, consider it an upset and a big, much needed win.