Yellow Jackets show signs of improvement
by Aaron Garcia
The Forest Hills Yellow Jackets pulled within one game of a .500 record when they beat West Stanly on Oct. 1 to improve to 3-4.
Running back Deonta Vinson led the way for Forest Hills with 170 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries. Linebacker Aaron Sigmon chipped in 14 tackles, while defensive lineman Darius Ellison added five more stops and a fumble recovery.
Yellow Jackets coach John Lowery said he’s been impressed with sophomore quarterback Jared Lee’s ability to lead the team.
“We put him in a tough spot by moving him to quarterback a few weeks ago and the kid has responded real well,” said Lowery.
The win snapped a two-game losing streak for Forest Hills. But more important, it showed Lowery that his young team was starting to come together.
“We started a little slow, but played well the second half,” said Lowery “It wasn’t bad. We have a young football team and we’ve had to fight some injuries on top of that, and that’s been difficult, but the kids played well last week, so we’ll see what happens this week.”
The Yellow Jackets were idle on Oct. 8, and it couldn’t have come at a better time, said Lowery.
“It’s one of those things where sometimes you don’t want a bye week, but we really needed the week to get healed up,” he said.
Forest Hills travels to North Stanly on Friday, Oct. 15.
Horne gives Monroe a boost
Monroe received a major boost on Sept. 24 when senior lineman/punter Eric Horne returned to action after missing the team’s first five games with a leg injury. Though the Redhawks have gotten good leadership all season from players such as Jamison Crowder, Jalen Sowell, Ricardo White and Qwadarius Duboise, the team found it difficult to replace the impact of Horne, a four-year starter.
“A lot of that leadership came when Eric came back,” said Monroe coach Johnny Sowell. “When he went out, it took us about two weeks to recover and decide to play some football. Then when he came back, that brought it up even more.”
As a result, Monroe notched its highest point total of the season in its 49-13 win over North Stanly on Oct. 8. The win improved Monroe’s record to 4-3 and 3-1 in the Rocky River 1A/2A conference, giving it a legitimate shot at a conference crown. Crowder, usually a receiver and defensive back, rushed six times, topped 150 yards and notched three touchdowns in the win. Jalen Sowell added another two touchdowns through the air.
Monroe visits Union Academy on Oct. 15.