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Down but not out, SJO stumbles against Unity

St Joseph-Ogden head coach Shawn Skinner
Spartan head coach Shawn Skinner talks to players after his team's 21-0 loss on the road at Unity.

"I thought our defense played stout. I thought that we had some plays that were designed to be good. We just had one breakdown here and there. Unity wasn't going to allow us any breakdowns."
Head coach Shawn Skinner

SJO fans wait for the game to start
On beautiful September evening, St. Joseph-Ogden fans fill the visiting team bleachers and wait for the week four game to start. A win victory would have kept the Spartans tied for first in the Illini Prairie Conference. The shutout drops SJO into a five-way tie with Unity, Monticello, Prairie Central and Olympia for second place.

Crayton Burnett throws a pass against the Unity Rockets

Keaton Nolan plays kick return for SJO

"We are going to learn from this. I'm a big believer you can learn as much from win as a loss. I don't think you got to lose to learn." ~ Coach Skinner

Above: Crayton Burnett makes a pass during first half action against the Rockets. Not having enough time in the pocket to throw the junior signal caller threw for 66 yards, completing 10 of 20 attempts.

Left: Keaton Nolan makes a catch while playing on kickoff return for the Spartans. Nolan was held to just 23 yards of rushing on offense after eight touches.

Below: Senior Jaden Miller blast his way past two Unity blockers while playing defense in the second quarter.

All photos: PhotoNews Media/Clark Brooks

Jaden Miller, senior, fights his way past Unity offensive linemen.

Fan takes a picture
A Spartan fan takes photos from the stands prior to the start of the football game against Unity. There will be a lot more photos of players next week as SJO hosts the Pontiac Indians (1-3) for their homecoming contest this Friday.

Brayden Weaver runs the ball
Sam Wesley yells instructions to teammates before the snap
"It was a hostile environment. We came out and gave our best effort. You can't fault us (for) that."

~ Sam Wesley, Senior, Linebacker

Above: Senior running back Brayden Weaver finds open turf in front of him during a carry in the first half. Weaver finished the game with just 13 all-purpose yards in the week four game against the Rockets.

Right: Sam Wesley shouts out instructions and adjustments to teammates before the Rockets snap the ball during second half action.

Below: Conner Hodge blocks nose to nose with a Unity lineman.

All photos: PhotoNews Media/Clark Brooks

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