JENNIFER FIERRO • PICAYUNE STAFF
LLANO — Homecoming has arrived at a good time for the Llano High School football team, according to coach Craig Slaughter.
“I’m really glad,” Slaughter said. “It’ll help give us a spark. It’s going to be a positive for us.”
The Yellow Jackets (1-3) welcome San Angelo Lake View (2-2) to Llano Stadium, 400 Texas 71 East, with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff Sept. 26
Llano enters the contest on a two-game losing streak, most recently a 30-0 setback to Fredericksburg on Sept. 19.
The Chiefs have wins over Fort Stockton (23-21) and Midland Greenwood (40-7) but lost to Andrews (29-28) and Lubbock Coronado (30-7).
Lake View operates the spread offense led by quarterback Nick Martinez, who has completed 22 of 45 passes for 351 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. He has rushed for 225 yards on 58 carries. Running back Anthony Chappa has 52 carries for 327 yards and two touchdowns, while running back Robert Martin has 43 rushes for 203 yards and three touchdowns. Receiver Michael Clark has caught eight passes for 117 yards and a touchdown.
The Jackets were facing a Billies team Sept. 19 that suffered a 55-7 loss to Burnet the week before.
“We had a brutal time moving the ball,” Slaughter said.
That might have been because Llano lost a key member of the offense to an injury on the first play of the game.
“That cuts your play sheet in about half,” the coach said. “We’re without our best skill player and best lineman. We’re having a hard time running the football. It’s not just one guy.”
Slaughter says to him, one part of an effective offense is staying on schedule. That means getting positive yards on first and second downs in order to have manageable third downs.
“I’m really frustrated,” he said. “It’s very personal. I’m more involved on that side of the ball. You spend time on your schemes and want your kids to be successful. All coaches, even position coaches, they take it personally if their kids aren’t having success.”
Against the Billies, the Jackets had 93 yards of total offense, which illustrates them not spending enough time on the field.
“Our goal is to move a set of chains,” Slaughter said. “That 10-yard chain looked like it was 40 yards long. It’s frustrating all the way around. I don’t want my coaches to get discouraged, I don’t want my kids to get discouraged.”
Fredericksburg earned 334 yards of total offense with 264 on the ground and took advantage of a blocked punt the Billies turned into a touchdown and a pooch kick that caught Llano by surprise.
“They did a good job blocking us,” Slaughter said. “We have some physical growing up to do. We need our 170-pounders to play like they’re 220 pounds. Our defense is playing their hearts out.”
Fredericksburg 30, Llano 0 on Sept. 19
Llano: 0-0-0-0 – 0
Fredericksburg: 10-7-7-6 – 30
F – Mitchell Edwards 5-yard pass from Kyle Grona (Jacob Eckhardt kick), 8:24
F – Eckhardt 32-yard field goal, 7:13
F – Edwards 5-yard pass from Grona (Eckhardt kick), :24
F – Grona 1-yard run (Eckhardt kick), 10:39
F – Grona 30-yard run (Eckhardt kick), 5:25
First downs — 5; Total net yards — 93; Rushes-yards — 31-33; Passing — 60; Interceptions — 2; Comp-att-int — 8-18-2; Fumbles-lost — 1-1; Penalties-yards — 4-20
First downs — 15; Total net yards — 338; Rushes-yards — 35-261; Passing — 77; Interceptions — 2; Comp-att-int — 9-26-2; Fumbles-lost — 1-1; Penalties-yards — 9-82
RUSHING – (Llano) John Heflin 3-17, Trevor Penny 7-7, Holden Simpson 4-7, Rhett Levingston 2-3, Jalen Bauman 1-2, Aaron Moss 14-(-3). (Fredericksburg), Kyle Grona 112-65-2, Kyle Reeh 1-(-5), Dillon Nielsen 6-63, Mitchell Edwards 4-21, Bryce Johnston 11-117, team 1-0
PASSING – (Llano) Holden Simpson 8-18-60-0 touchdown-2 interceptions. (Fredericksburg), Kyle Grona 9-25-77-2 touchdowns-2 interceptions
RECEIVING – (Llano) Moss 2-28, Tommy Yelvington 2-18, Kasin Riley 4-14. (Fredericksburg), Mason Clark 3-46, Reeh 1-7, Jacob Hartmann 1-10, Edwards 3-16-2 touchdowns, Johnston 1-(-2)