The North Lincoln Knights (2-7, 1-4 Southern Foothills 1A) suffered a 50-14 loss at the hands of undefeated Southern Foothillsâ€™ power Polk County last week.
Head coach Lonnie Custer believes the Knights could have been more competitive, but failed to take advantage of their opportunities.
Illustrating his point, North Lincoln had the ball five times inside the Wolverinesâ€™ red zone and only came away with two scores.
â€œWe have to score more points. We had the ball five times inside the red zone. We have to do a better job of putting points on the board,â€ he said.
This week, North will face Cedar Ridge a team out Hillsborough.
Custer has been happy with the teamâ€™s offensive balance and looks for that to carry over against the Red Wolves.
â€œWeâ€™ve done a good job of keeping it about 60 run /40 pass, so we have to keep that up. We have to have a balanced attack,â€ he said.
Northâ€™s running game did receive a boost as Casey Woodie rushed for 104 yards on 15 carries. It was Woodieâ€™s first 100-yard effort of the season.
So have the Knights come up with some new ideas against the unconventional 3-5 look theyâ€™ll see from the Red Wolves?
â€œWeâ€™ve put in a few wrinkles trying to take advantage of a few things they do, but itâ€™s all going to come down to execution,â€ he said.
Cedar Ridge, on offense, is led by junior running back Devon Moore. Moore at 5 10 190 pounds is considered one of the top running backs in the state. Custer believes stopping him will be the difference-maker.
â€œHeâ€™s one of the better running backs in the state. They get him the ball in a lot of different ways. They play him at running back and sometimes at slot receiver,â€ he said.
The Knights are averaging over 300 rushing yards allowed a game. Thatâ€™s a disturbing trend that Custer would like to stop.
â€œWe got to make tackles. Itâ€™s the same story every week, guys are in positions to make plays and theyâ€™re just not making them. You to have finish.â€
While Cedar Ridge enters Fridayâ€™s game at 2-7, Custer believes theyâ€™re much better.
â€œThey have a solid quarterback and a good passing game. They havenâ€™t lost a game by more than seven points, so itâ€™s kind of a deceiving record,â€ he said.
It is not a regular week for the Knights who have had four of their players receive disciplinary actions handed down by Custer.
â€We need some of our younger players to step up because of some disciplinary actions by four of our starters,â€ he said.
â€œThey (the younger players) got to step up and make plays. They have to take advantage of their opportunity,â€ he added.
North Lincoln will charter buses for Fridayâ€™s game which will be in Hillsborough.
by John Mark Brooks