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#22 vs. #16  

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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 16984
North Carolina
High School
August 24, 2019 11:36 pm  

Friday night we opened our 2019 season at home against the #16 team in the east.  This was my first game in this stadium on the home sideline, having spent 3 games on the visitor's sidelines (2013, 2014, 2016).  It being the first game of the season, there was all sorts of pregame folderol.  The only thing missing was a F16 fly-over.  When we finally got started I found myself in the loudest high school stadium I've ever been in.  It was hard to even hard to talk on the sideline. 

We won the coin toss and deferred.  A deep kick and the bad guys started at their own 20.  Our defense played well in the opening series and our opponent had a 3 and out.  A bad snap on their punt and their kicker ran for his life.  We tackled him at their 21 and we were in business.  A short pass put us at their 12 and then an Inside Zone run to my RB and we were off to the races for 6 points.  Leading 7-0, we kicked off.  Another deep kick off and they took over at their 20.  On 3rd & long, we flushed out their QB and he completed a 36-yard pass in double coverage.  Dang... A 10-yard run gave them another 1st Down at our 36.  2 more runs and another 1st Down.  A pass to an open receiver in the end-zone slips off the receiver's hands and we escape their threat.  They punt, and we take over at our 20.  On 1st Down, my RB takes an IZ for 32 yards out to their 48.  (Yeah, I call them "my" RBs.)  But from there, our drive stalls and we punt.  Starting inside their own 15, the bad guys mount a drive that takes them to our 37.  They stall again and punt.  We start at our own 6.  After two plays of going nowhere, we complete a pass that gets us a 1st Down at our 38.  With a new set of downs, we complete a screen pass to my RB, who takes the ball 60 yards before getting tripped up at the 3-yard line.  At this point, the referee decides it's time for the show to become about him and he brings back our screen because of "holding."  Instead, we end up with a 4-yard gain....With the air taken out of our balloon, we end up punting...grrrrr.  They take over at their 49.  This time they drive to our 12-yard line.  2 incomplete passes glance off of their receiver's hands and on 4th Down, we sack their QB.  At this point, both teams seem to be sputtering and inconsistent.  One excellent play is followed by 1 or 2 bad ones.  Our possession ends on a punt, and their next possession ends on...thunder and lightning.  Here in the thunder & lightning capital of the world, it's common for games to take 6 hours, if not get cancelled midway through altogether.  With a 7-0 lead early in the 2nd Quarter, it was time to go inside and sit....and wait....

After an hour, or so...we resume.  You always wonder what the personality of the team will be like after a delay.  Both teams seemed to be feeling out each other, with the timing of both slightly off.  It would get interesting when play resumed.

Our opponent resumed with possession, but had to punt.  We took over with little to show until we reached our 41.  Then for the first time, we went deep.  A great catch and our guy tumbled down at their 22-yard line.  One play later and my RB went 22 yards on an IZ and we go up, 14-0.  On their 30, the bad guys complete a pass, but we swarm the receiver and strip out the ball, taking possession at their 34.  So what's standard operating procedure after getting a turnover?  You go deep.  34 yards later, our receiver is standing in the end zone with the football and we're up, 21-0.

So here we are, in the 2nd Quarter up 21-0 and yet something seems weird.  We're not hitting on all cylinders and yet we're up by 3 scores on #16th-ranked team.  Are we that good?  Are they overrated?  Or, are we still just too early in the game yet....?  On our opponent's final drive on the 1st half, they go on a 12-play drive that takes them to our 4-yard line.  On the final play of the half, we sack their QB.

Leading 21-0 at the half, we feel good but not comfortable.  It's obvious our opponent can play.  It's also interesting how quickly things can change in a half...

We start the 3rd Quarter with a lackluster 3 and out.  We punt.  The bad guys start on a good field at our 47.  They go nowhere and punt.  We takeover and with a 1st Down on their 47, we throw a swing to my RB.  He goes 17 yards taking it down to their 30-yard line.  And then it all goes wrong....horribly wrong.  On 2nd Down, our QB looks down the right side of the field and makes a perfect throw to our opponent's Safety, who proceeds to return it 45 yards.  With a 1st Down on our 37, they go deep to the end zone and just like that, it's 21-7.  With 6:06 remaining in the 3rd Quarter, we come right back.  With 1st Down on our 20, we complete a pass in the flat and our receiver goes 55 yards down to their 25.....except that it gets brought back for a 5-yard loss because of holding.  Next, we go deep and complete a 40-yard pass.  A pass interference puts us on their 18-yard line.  And then....it happens again.  A swing pass to my open RB is under thrown, intercepted, and returned e i g h t y f i v e yards for a touchdown.  The score is now 21-14.  The thing about letting an opponent back in the game when once they were waaay behind....they get pretty excited and fired up.  Now there's 4:10 left in the 3rd Quarter.  We take their kick-off and return it 47 yards.  From there, we go backwards losing 10 yards over the next 3 plays.  We punt on 4th and 20 with our opponent now having an opportunity to tie.  They takeover at their 42.  Our defense stiffens and they punt.  Our possession yields a 1st Down but little else and we punt.  Now into the 4th Quarter, they have a 3 & out and punt.  We take the punt at our 35 and our returner zigs and zags, taking the punt 65 yards for a touchdown!  And we subsequently miss our first extra point of the evening.  27-14, us.  With 9:14 remaining in the game, we kick-off.  Starting at their 23, they go long and complete a 36-yard pass.  On 3rd Down, their QB unleashes a perfect spiral to an open receiver in the end zone.  It goes right through his hands.  On 4th Down, we sack their QB and their threat is over.  For now.  At this point in the game, players falter and cramps set in.  Stoppages and delays become more frequent.  At mid-field, we have to punt and their returner breaks free.  We finally corral him, but only after a 47-yard return.  A completed pass over the middle gets them a 27-yard gain to our 20.  A deep corner pass is completed in the end zone for a touchdown and they convert the XP.  Our lead is now cut to 6.  With 4 minutes remaining, we take the ball at our 35 with our destiny in our own hands.  On 2nd Down, we complete a slant over the middle for 20 yards.  We complete a swing, but the pass is low and my RB drops to a knee to catch the ball.  It results in a 7-yard loss.  We have to punt.  The ball rolls out of bounds at their 10-yard line.  But they have one last chance.  They miss on a 1st Down pass down the left sideline.  On 2nd Down, they surprise us with a draw play, but it goes for no gain.  On 3rd Down, their QB drops back, but we pressure him into a poor throw that we almost intercept.  4th Down, and one last play.  Their QB drops back and lets it rip.  Their receiver runs straight down the right sideline, flying past our DB.  He is open, but the ball is overthrown, and the game is over.  A three-touchdown lead in the 1st Half ends up being a 6-point win in a game that goes to the final play.  Zombie football.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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Coach TonyM
(@ramoody)
Gold
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 1726
North Carolina
Middle School
Head Coach
August 25, 2019 8:11 am  

Gonna 1 up ya Dave (sorta)..

our high school team was up 21-0 in the first quarter.  Just a dominant performance.  Then their mouths got in the way. 5 personal fouls and 1 ejection, and 26-21 with 5 minutes left.  We have the ball at midfield.  On the final drive, our RB takes it to the 5 on 13 straight carries. Everybody on both sides knows who is getting the ball.  It doesn't matter, cause they cannot stop him.  The kid had 40 carries for 280 yards on the night.  First and goal on the 5.  QB bobbles the snap, 2 and goal on the 15.  The RB gets 5 yards on 2nd, and 5 yards on 3rd.  So it is 4th and goal on the 5, less than a minute left.  (The QB cannot run-too slow and cannot throw.  He was 1 for 6 on the night, with the one being a great one handed catch behind the runner's back).  Coach calls a timeout and we throw a corner route 10 yards over the receiver's head...  we have practiced that particular play (2 point conversion) over 20 times this week.  How many times did the quarterback complete it?  Zero, nada, zilch. Always over the receiver's head.  So when the game is on the line with a quarterback who knows you have no faith in him throwing the ball you call a play that he has NEVER successfully completed.  You lose 26-21.    Three factors cost us the game 1)Discipline  2)Conditioning 3)Wrong kid at QB.  All three are on the coach.  The first two are the easiest to take care of, although it is too late to try and take care of number 2 as it will take weeks to correct.  Take care of #1 though, and we win the ball game.  Personal fouls are unacceptable.


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 16984
North Carolina
High School
August 25, 2019 8:49 am  

Three factors cost us the game 1)Discipline  2)Conditioning 3)Wrong kid at QB.  All three are on the coach.  The first two are the easiest to take care of, although it is too late to try and take care of number 2 as it will take weeks to correct.

Great insight, Tony.  1 and 2 are sooooo overlooked.  And I don't mean "overlooked" in that it's ignored, but "overlooked" in that it's implemented incorrectly.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 16984
North Carolina
High School
August 25, 2019 5:32 pm  

We're ranked as the #20 4A team in the state according to Simmons ratings.  We had a 3-hour coaches meeting tonight, so I guess I can see why. lol

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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