The Middlesboro Yellow Jackets are at home tonight for the first time since the season opener. It’s Hall of Fame weekend and the team has an opportunity to pull a big district upset against Danville.
“It’s great to be back home, we went up to the field (Thursday night) to practice,” said MHS coach Randy Frazier. “I think the kids are glad to not have to get on a bus and travel and they’re glad to be playing in front of the home crowd.”
Middlesboro (3-4) and Danville (5-2) will both be fighting for survival in District 7-2A, as both the Jacket and Admirals are coming off a loss in their district openers last week.
The Jackets were burned by a couple of big pass plays early on and had a pair of turnovers returned for touchdowns in a 42-14 loss at Lexington Christian, while Danville was held in check at Somerset in a 24-7 loss to the Briarjumpers.
“Those big plays, you just can’t give them up on defense or on offense,” Frazier said. “From the second quarter on we played them pretty evenly, but by then it was kind of out of reach. We definitely can’t give up those big plays this week and expect to stay in the game.”
District 7 continues to be one of the toughest in Class 2A with Somerset, LCA and Danville all ranked among the top ten. The young Jackets have shown steady improvement throughout the season, but will have their hands full both tonight against the Admirals and next week at home against the Briarjumpers.
“Danville is a complete team, they’re probably the biggest team we’ve played up front and they’re quick in the backfield. They’re the complete package,” Frazier said. “You look at the ratings and three teams from our district have been all been ranked in the top five. Whoever wins the district certainly could go on to win a state championship.”
MHS has been able to bounce back from each of their previous losses to earn victories the following week, with a couple of surprisingly strong performances when they weren’t expected. Frazier added that his kids are motivated to again even their record.
“That’s kind of been our pattern. Our backs are against the wall a little bit, but these guys have played hard all year long and they’re going to do what they can to get back on the winning way,” he said.
Tonight’s game kicks off at 7:30 p.m.