Three-Point Stance: Williamstown Relies on Experience

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Editor’s Note: Three-Point Stance is Gridiron Glory’s written preview series leading up to its 15th season on WOUB. Gridiron is visiting training camps for all 32 teams in the coverage area as they prepare for the 2013 football season. We begin in West Virginia, where crosstown rivals endure change and a senior-laden team looks to return to the postseason.

When avid high school football fans think about the 2012 Williamstown Yellow Jackets football season, one word that may come to mind is different.

Last year’s squad saw the worst start (3-4) under Terry Smith’s tenure before pulling a complete 180 and squeezing into the WVSSAC Class A playoffs on a three-game win streak. Although the Yellow Jackets went into the postseason with tremendous momentum, they were ultimately eliminated by a tough Magnolia Blue Eagle team. But that was last year, and now the 2013 season is upon us.

Here are three things to know about the 2013 Williamstown Yellowjackets:

1. The Jackets Have Experience at Quarterback

Leading the charge on the offensive side is senior quarterback Jake Tracewell. Now a third year starter, Tracewell has helped the Yellow Jackets advance to the postseason in both of his two years under center.

“We usually run the ball,” Smith says about Williamstown’s offensive philosophy. “We come from the I and we run right at people. But we’ve got a pretty good quarterback so we may put the ball in his hands more.” Other goals for the Yellow Jackets include limiting turnovers and beating their opponents in time of possession. The experience they have under center could go a long way to helping them in that regard.

2. The Defense Leads the Way

Defense will be a crucial part of success for Williamstown in the 2013 season. Last year, the Yellow Jackets were 0-5 when allowing opponents to score 20 or more points. On the flip side, the team had an undefeated 6-0 record when holding opposing offenses below 20 points.

Look for key returning lettermen David Hastings (linebacker), Adam Pfeiffer (defensive line), and Dakota Watson (linebacker) to make a difference for the Yellow Jackets. Both Hastings and Pfeiffer are seniors hoping to end their careers on a high note, while Watson is junior. Hastings and Watson both received West Virginia All-State honorable mention honors last season.

3. Lots and Lots of Seniors

The Williamstown Yellow Jackets are no strangers to success, and they will look to their senior leaders to continue that tradition. Although they have lost seven seniors to graduation, this year’s team is greeted with 13 seniors. This senior class brings a unique set of leadership and experience that many football teams lack. The Williamstown Class of 2014 has never had a losing season and has participated in post-season play in all of their previous three years. If all goes well for the Yellow Jackets, 13 seniors will be making their fourth consecutive post-season. The regular season for Williamstown begins at home against Tyler (W.Va.) on Aug. 30.

Follow @gridironglory on Twitter and Instagram and Like the Gridiron Glory Facebook page for continued coverage throughout the preseason. Gridiron Glory returns Friday, Aug. 23 at 11:30 p.m. on WOUB.