Tough games early for Corner
by Johnathan Bentley
Jul 09, 2013 | 1858 views | 0 0 comments | 56 56 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Corner head football coach Zac Willis talks to his team after a practice last season. The Yellow Jackets went 7-4 in Willis’ first year as a head coach. The Jackets face 2013 without playmakers Blake Byrd and Kerry Smith.
Corner head football coach Zac Willis talks to his team after a practice last season. The Yellow Jackets went 7-4 in Willis’ first year as a head coach. The Jackets face 2013 without playmakers Blake Byrd and Kerry Smith.
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•This is the third in a series highlighting area high school football schedules.

Staring at a 1-3 record to start the 2012 football season, Corner’s playoff hopes were bleak.

Then the Yellow Jackets got their offense going behind quarterback Blake Byrd and receiver Kerry Smith and rolled all the way into the playoffs under first-year head coach Zac Willis.

Corner closed out the regular season by winning six straight games before running into a high-octane Dadeville team in the first round of the playoffs.

For the second straight season, Corner faces a front-loaded the schedule. However, this season the Jackets will be without Byrd and Smith.

This year’s opponents went 45-60 last year. However, the last six opponents were just 15-43.

Only three of Corner’s opponents had a winning record last season — the Yellow Jackets face those three teams (Munford, Dora and Calera) in the first four weeks. Starting with Week 3, Corner plays five consecutive road games.

The Jackets, who finished 7-4 last season, play their last three games at home in 2013.

Corner opens against Munford, which advanced to the second round of the 4A state playoffs last season. Munford won last year’s game 47-7. This year’s game will be at Corner High School

After hosting a West Blocton team that finished 2-8 last season, Corner travels to both Dora (last year’s 4A, Region 4 champion) and Calera (last year’s Region 4 runner up). Dora and Calera combined to win 20 games last year.

Dora won last year’s game over Corner 39-17 while Calera picked up a 33-22 win.

The Yellow Jackets’ turnaround started at home against rival Hayden in 2012. The teams will meet at Hayden on Sept. 27 in a non-region matchup. Last season Corner held off the Tigers for a 28-22 win thanks to Smith, who had eight catches for 202 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Corner plays key region games in Week 6 and Week 7, heading to Oak Grove and Jemison. The Jackets pulled out narrow home wins over each team last year, beating Oak Grove 35-28 and Jemison 24-21.

Corner closes out the season with home games against Carbon Hill, Bibb County and Sumiton Christian.

Two of the three teams have new head coaches with Rodney Dollar at Carbon Hill and Zack Holmes the new head coach at Sumiton Christian.

The Yellow Jackets defeated Carbon Hill 52-14 last year.

Corner plays its final region game in Week 9 against Bibb County. Corner won last year’s meeting 39-25 to clinch a playoff spot.

Corner topped Sumiton Christian 35-7 in the final regular season game last year.

Corner Yellow Jackets schedule

The Corner Yellow Jackets open their second season under head coach Zac Willis. The Jackets finished 7-4 last season, going 6-1 down the stretch.

Date        Opponent     ‘12 rec.

Aug. 30    Munford       8-4

Sept. 6    W. Blocton    2-8

Sept. 13     at Dora     12-2

Sept. 20    at Calera    8-3

Sept. 27    at Hayden   2-8

Oct. 4    at Oak Grove   2-8

Oct. 11    at Jemison    5-6

Oct. 18    Carbon Hill    0-10

Oct. 25    Bibb County   3-6

Nov. 1    Sumiton Chr.   3-6