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Raiders give up pair of big plays, fall to Jets 14-0

WEST POINT — The Hyundai Glovis Raiders lost to the Hogansville Jets 14-0 on Thursday night.

“They gave me about 50 percent tonight,” Raiders head football coach Markei Adams said. “They didn’t give all they had, so we have to go back to the drawing board.”

The Raiders fumbled the ball with 4:30 remaining in the first quarter, which the Jets capitalized on immediately. Early in the Jets’ ensuing drive, the visitors scored a 27-yard rushing touchdown with 3:44 to go in the opening period. The Jets made the extra point field goal, which counts for two points in the 12-and-under league.

The Jets were relentless defensively and found themselves in the Raiders’ backfield in seemingly every play in the first quarter.

Blocking concerns were points brought up to the team often throughout the night by Adams and assistant coach Alanteo Hutchinson.

“Blocking is a big part of the game,” Adams said. “They missed a lot of blocks, which cause us not to get plays off. That was a major issue that we had. That’s one thing that we’re going to take to the drawing board and focus on. When we come back to practice, we’re going to block. That’s a part of the game. If you can’t block, you can’t win.”

It appeared as if the Raiders were driving down the field to tie the game before the end of the first half, but with 1:35 remaining in the second quarter, a Raiders’ pass floated into the hands of a Jets defender and was returned for a touchdown. The extra point attempt was no good.

“We just have to keep fighting through adversity,” Adams said. “We were down 14-0 early on. Once [our] defense settled in, they couldn’t move the ball on us. We have to stop starting from behind, and come out fighting from the jump.”

The home team tried to get Khyren McQueen going in some plays drawn up for him, but the Jets’ defense overpowered the Raiders the entire game.

“He gives all he has every single play,” Adams said. “I appreciate him. I look at him as a leader on the team by him being so young, he’s got it. All of the kids on my team have it, but there has to be more effort.”

With Thursday’s loss, Adams said that the Raiders’ increased their chances of not being granted a round-one bye in the playoffs. 

“We’re not far because I feel like every team that we’ve played, we could’ve beat,” Adams said. “It’s just minor things that we have to fix. I am so proud of the defense today, we just have to get the offense going and get on one page. Once that comes about, I think that we’ll be a great team.”

The Raiders are scheduled to return home, in West Point, next Tuesday night to host the Diverse Power Falcons to finish the regular season. The Raiders’ lone win of the season, according to Adams, came in a 27-0 shutout against the Power Falcons to open the season on Sept. 21.