Jonesboro defeats Lovejoy in Spring Game

The Jonesboro Cardinals used great defense to power past Lovejoy 13-2 in the spring game Thursday. It was a scoreless game going into halftime as both defenses didn’t allow the offenses to get much going. There were several punts and three-and-outs. A memorable play in the first half was a Jontavius Wyman interception that slowed down Lovejoy who drove deep into Jonesboro territory.

“It was going great. It felt like last season when I had all the interceptions. It was a great play. I’ve been working on technique and in the weight room a lot. I’ve been out of town working with my trainer a lot and just getting better,” said Wyman.

Wyman made several plays in the game and got work done on both sides of the ball. He had several catches on offense and was a mismatch for the defense.

Another player who had a strong game on the defensive side of the ball was Jamar Owens. Owens got an interception late in the third quarter and took away the deep ball. He showed his great ball skills and ability to close on the ball in a hurry. The backend for Jonesboro came up with two turnovers. Jonesboro is right up there with the best secondary in the state along with Peachtree Ridge and Grayson.

“Basically don’t let nothing get behind me. I just knew it was coming. I knew they were going to throw deep, so I had to get that. We are working on speed even more and working on getting stronger this summer and we will be even better,” said Jamar Owens.

“I think it was good. It’s kind of what is expected of them (Owens and Wyman) now to do something and make a game-changing play,” said head coach De’Timothy Floyd.

Another standout for Jonesboro is running back Lucius Murray. Murray made several plays in the game including a long run where the defender came in with a big hit, but Murray bounced off it and made a big play getting his team into the red zone. He finished it off several plays later with a rushing touchdown. He gave the Cardinals their first score of the game. Murray also was mentioned by his head coach as a standout this spring.

The second score came after the second team entered the game. On a trick play, Jaden Brandon took a reverse showcasing his speed and outran the defense for a touchdown to give the Cardinals a two-score lead. One thing’s for certain, Jonesboro has playmakers.

Lovejoy running back Corey Orr also made some memorable runs when he was able to get the edge showcasing his burst. Orr had several long runs on the day. One thing they can hang their hat on is good play next season from the running back room. Lovejoy has a couple of playmakers at wide receiver who could have major seasons for the program. Also for the Wildcats, the defensive line created good pressure off the edge and made the Jonesboro QB feel uncomfortable. Linebacker Chad Fairchild was making plays. Fairchild has good size and strength and a football IQ. He reads the game well and is great at filling gaps.

Defensively for Jonesboro, Jeremiah Ticket was a problem in the middle. He is almost an immovable object and was making a living in the Lovejoy backfield when he was in. Ticket has good power and strength and recorded several tackles for loss in the game.

The schools are only eight miles apart. Although it was only a spring game, you could feel the intensity with the hard hits and the physicality on Thursday. Historically Lovejoy leads the series 15-3 but Jonesboro won last year’s matchup 36-30 and also the spring matchup yesterday. Jonesboro has had the momentum lately in the rivalry.

“Both schools did a good job competing and playing hard. It’s a good program over there at Lovejoy. Really enjoyed competing with them and looking forward to the season.”

Here is what is next for the Jonesboro program after the spring game as summer nears.

“First we will take a break and let our bodies rest and our minds recuperate. Then we will hit the weight room with workouts starting on June 3rd. Strength will be the biggest thing and we will get a little bit of conditioning in and work on some technique stuff,” said Floyd.

“After we watch the film, we will know more specifically what extra technique we need to work on. “The first goal is for everybody to be one. We just have to be one. It is always about beating the school around the corner, making the playoffs, and trying to win a state championship.”

Lovejoy certainly has talent on the team and will be a physical opponent for next year. The offense will be a side of the ball to watch to see if they can score points and not wear out the defense. Lovejoy will be playing up next year in 5A and have made the postseason five of the last six years.


Tags: , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply