SCOTTSBORO — The Scottsboro football team’s win over North Jackson wasn’t the prettiest of victories.
But in the Battle of the Valley Rivalry, there are no ugly wins.
Scottsboro put together another dominant defensive effort and chewed up yardage and the clock with its rushing attack en route to a 33-0 win over the visiting Chiefs Friday night at Trammell Stadium.
It was Scottsboro’s fifth win over its archrival in the last seven meetings and its fourth straight over North Jackson at Trammell Stadium. It was the third time in series history — North Jackson now leads 21-11 — that the Wildcats have shut out the Chiefs.
“Our kids did a great job, played their hearts out,” said Scottsboro head coach Don Jacobs. “Looking at the scoreboard, I don’t know the last time they were shutout. Pretty big feat for our defense. Give us confidence going into next week going back into the region.”
The win was a milestone one for Jacobs, who picked up his 100th career head-coaching victory during his third season as the head coach at his alma mater.
“It’s humbling,” Jacobs said. “I’m proud that we won it here. There’s a lot of people I have to thank. I’m very proud of these kids. It’s a very humbling night for me. The folks at Elkmont were a part of this too, the folks at Oneonta were a part of this and all the coaches across the state that have helped me.”
The game was scoreless after one quarter — Scottsboro’s Cameron Whited blocked Abraham Castro’s 30-yard field goal attempt after the Chiefs recovered a Scottsboro fumble — but Scottsboro (4-1) finally broke through in the second. Kaylem Dupree’s 37-yard punt return led to Jacob Manning’s 35-yard touchdown run on the next play to put Scottsboro in front 6-0 with 8:41 left in the half.
The Wildcats upped their lead to 12-0 nearly five minutes later when Cam Bass scored on a 25-yard touchdown run.
Scottsboro then got a defensive score when North Jackson mishandled a shotgun snap and the Wildcats’ A.J. Widgeon recovered the fumble in the end zone for a touchdown. Mees de Jongh kicked the first of this three PATs for a 19-0 Scottsboro lead.
The game was delayed some 45 minutes just before the start of the third quarter because of lightning. When play resumed, Scottsboro took the opening second-half kickoff 51 yards on 10 plays, a drive capped off by Manning’s 6-yard touchdown run for a 26-0 lead. The Wildcats’ final scoring drive was 12 plays for 59 yards and ended with Bass’s 20-yard touchdown run. Scottsboro possessed the football for 14 of the first 18 minutes of the second half.
“We talked about it during halftime and the delay that we had to control the line of scrimmage,” Jacobs said.
“You have to give North Jackson credit. They schemed us up a little bit and just got after us. Our kids responded (offensively) in the second half. We scored 14 points and held the ball away from them, which helps the defense by keeping that other offense on their sideline.”
Manning finished with 126 yards on 23 carries and also completed his lone pass attempt for 16 yards to Rylee Whitehead, who also chipped in 36 rushing yards on offense and had a fumble recovery on defense. Bass finished with 90 yards on 21 carries.
Quarterback Dalton Morris was 6-of-15 passing for 25 yards and Johnny Gilliam had 59 rushing yards for North Jackson (1-4) while KJ Huckabee added 54. But counting sacks and negative plays the Chiefs managed only 62 rushing yards. It was the third straight game Scottsboro held an opponent to less than 100 rushing yards.
“We kind of matched up with them size wise on defense and thought we would match up defensively. It just came down to whether we could execute offensively. We couldn’t from the very start and that was the difference. You’re not going to win a game like that,” said North Jackson head coach Chandler Tygard. “(Scottsboro) is really good and all credit to them.”