The Coast Union football team scored more points than in any previous game this season — 42 — but it was still 18 short of what the Owls of Laguna Blanca came up with during Saturday’s 60-42 loss in Santa Barbara.
Now 0-3, the Broncos are getting more offense, but coach Bill Clough saysthey need to work on their tackling. “Our tackling is terrible,” he said. “If we had stopped them a couple of key times, we could have won that game.”
Clough also notes that the Broncos’ special team play needs to improve. “It’s not as though we don’t work on that stuff in practice,” he said. “We gave them two kickoff returns for touchdowns. That is really disappointing. And if we had tackled their quarterback a few times, we might have won that game.”
Without the availability of fleet-footed running back Binh Trieu — recovering from an ankle injury — the Broncos are at a disadvantage, Clough explained.
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“That hurts us and takes our speed away, but he should be ready to go this weekend.”
Lack of experience is a factor, as well: Clough has only three players on his starting team who played as starters last season.
“We’re a very inexperienced team, we’re live and learn. This week’s going to be tough because Orcutt Academy is more physical than Laguna Blanca — we scouted them.”
Clough said his team needs to “mix it up” a bit more because there were very few passes that were thrown or were successful against the Owls. “We ran the same plays over and over.”
One play the Broncos have used frequently involves Lane Sutherland taking the snap from a shotgun formation and trying to power his way through the defensive line. Sometimes his path is blocked, but at Laguna Blanca, he did find running room on numerous occasions.
In fact Sutherland — who scored 28 of the Broncos’ 42 points — carried the ball 40 times and gained 284 yards, according to the MaxPreps stats kept by Cough’s staff.
Sutherland also threw the ball seven times — completing four of those attempts for 27 yards — and caught one pass for a 15- yard gain.
On defense, Sutherland had three solo tackles and three assists. Quarterback Alexis Mirales completed four of six passes for 60 yards and carried the ball seven times for 35 yards, scoring onetouchdown.
Wide receiver Tommy Moreno caught a pair of passes for 34 yards and a touchdown. Jimmy Welch had three solo tackles, and Nahum Hernandez was credited with six solo tackles, three assists, and a sack.
Wide receiver Jake McAvoy caught a pass for 11 yards and made three solo tackles and assisted on two others.
Brayan Pena made three solo tackles and helped in two others, and JuanCarlos Fernandez picked up 47 yards on kickoff returns.