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Feeling the Frustration

Pickens drops third game by one score

By Rocky Nimmons
Publisher

rnimmons@thepccourier.com

PICKENS — Frustration.

That one word best sums up the Pickens Blue Flame’s season thus far in 2018. Pickens is now 1-3, but the Blue Flame players, coaches and fans know it should be better.

The Blue Flame have lost three one-score games by a combined 14 points. In all of those losses, Pickens was in the contest until the final whistle was blown.

Friday’s game at Bill Isaacs Field was the culmination of the frustration. as the Big Blue fell to the undefeated Travelers Rest Devil Dogs by a single point, 20-19.

The Flame were hoping to end TR’s win streak, but the loss held no more anguish for the Pickens than the first two in 2018 did.

“It is pretty tough, but I wouldn’t say it was any worse than the loss to Pendleton or Easley,” Pickens coach Chad Smith said. “We are right there, but we just have to make plays. There were about 15 plays in this game that if we made them, we win the game.

“Some of them were on us as a coaching staff for not have the correct people in at certain times. Some of it was on the kids. We will get it fixed.”

Turnovers were the biggest issue. The Blue Flame fumbled the ball away five times, with the Devildogs recovering three.

“We turned the ball over, and we can’t turn the ball over, and they were sloppy turnovers,” Smith said. “Give Travelers Rest credit. They take a lot of pride in forcing turnovers, but some of these tonight were not forced. We have to take care of the ball, we have to take care of the penalties and we have to take care of our execution. That is 100 percent on us. If we take care of those things, we will be a difficult team to beat.”

Despite the mistakes, the Flame played hard, like they always do — especially defensive coordinator Eric Houston’s unit. The defense allowed TR only 278 yards of offense all

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