The Transylvania Times -

Tigers Fight Hard, Fall 16-0 To Jets In Season Opener


August 26, 2019

Samuel McCall (No. 22) takes a handoff during the first half of Rosman's home opener against the Enka Jets. The Tigers tried to pound away with the ground game, but only managed 47 yards rushing on the night.

The Wiliam Cathey field at Silverstein Memorial Stadium was more suited for a duck than the home opener for Rosman Tiger football, but that's just how the second era for head coach Dan Essenberg played out Friday night as the Tigers hosted the Enka Jets to begin the 2019 season.

The Tigers' defense seemed to fit the style of their new coach showing some defensive toughness. The defense would need that toughness as they stayed on the field most of the first half. Ultimately, the Jets used two explosive plays to hand the Tigers a 16-0 loss to start the season.

The Tiger defense forced Enka into an early three-and-out to start the game, but a struggling offense would see the new coach asking his defense to defend the red zone early in the game.

After the Tigers jumped offsides on several occasions the Jets had the ball around the 15-yard line early in the first quarter before safety Brennan Chapman recovered a fumble at the 12-yard line for the Tigers first stand.

The Tigers needed another defensive stance to round out the quarter, as the Jets held the ball inside the Tiger 10-yard line.

Gabe Shipman would lead the charge as the Tigers held on fourth down at the two-yard line.

Rosman was forced to punt, setting the Jets up around midfield. Enka's Jackson Smith exploited a tired Tiger defense with a 47-yard touchdown run with 5:45 left in the second quarter. The PAT gave the Jets a 7-0 early lead.

The Tigers hoped to head into the half only down one score, but unfortunately the officials called a safety when Chapman's foot was behind the goal line as he aired the ball out under pressure.

A Tigers' receiver ran the wrong route and the officials ruled intentional grounding; and because Chapman's foot was on the goal line, Enka was given a safety.

The Jets took a 9-0 halftime lead.

The Rosman offense continued to struggle and the Tiger defense would spend the third quarter with their backs against the wall just like the first half.

The Tigers secondary had two opportunities for interceptions, but the defenders dropped the ball with no one between them and a pick-six.

The Jets used another explosive play with 5:48 left in the game. The 80-yard touchdown run put a dagger into the Tigers' chances of a comeback.

In summary, the Tigers defense was just asked to do too much in this game and will need the offense to keep them off the field moving forward.

After the game coach Essenberg spoke about the Tigers' efforts.

Senior Brennan Chapman saw his first action under center against Enka. Chapman did his best to lead Rosman's offense, but the Tigers were limited to 74 yards of total offense. (Times photos by Scotty Ruff)

"Defensively, we played really hard," he said. "The two big plays they had we broke down. On the film I'm sure we will find one guy out of position. I can't fault how hard we played. Offensively, we were very confused. We missed our blocks on the line, our backs hits the wrong hole, and most of that is because they have never played. Receivers ran the wrong routes. There is a lot to fix. We were physical tonight. We've got to make adjustments on the fly. We've got to get better and we've got to do it in a hurry."

The Tigers only rushed for 47 yards on the night while allowing 225 yards rushing, aided by the two long plays.

The Tigers' offense only picked up two first downs on the night while Enka had eight. The Tigers aired the ball out for 27 yards while Enka had 22 yards passing.

Derick Synder was the Tigers' leading rusher with only four carries for 21 yards. Samuel McCall was second with 11 carries for 13 yards. Chapman added eight yards on eight carries.

Chapman was 2-of-7 through the air for 27 yards. Tyler Stamey and freshman Carson Lyda each had a catch.

The Tigers will travel to Brevard (0-1) next week for the annual county rival game.


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