THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Titans Dominate In Blowout Win
The Lena/STAA Titans certainly did not have any trouble dealing with the visiting Bowler/Gresham Cats last Friday in a Great 8 North Conference match up in Lena, forcing a mercy clock after the half and coming away with the 49-6 win.
"We played some good football at all levels tonight," said Lena Co-Head Coach Dale Lange. "Even our JV guys. We knew coming into this that it was going to be a bit of a mismatch, which is actually a tough situation for a coach but we had some good plays right away in the beginning and were able to out-man them."
The Titans had a game plan going into this one. Run. And boy did they stick to it, going 340 yards on 35 plays with an average rush of 9.7 yards.
Defensively the Titans wouldn't give the Cats an inch, holding the slim 12 man squad to 68 yards of total offense.
It seemed like the Titans had plenty of gas in their tanks from start to finish, keeping a fast beat tempo that the Cats could not match.
"This 8-man format is a full tilt style a football," said Lange. "You condition differently for it and the guys need to be ready to go all out all game."
The Titans had a contingent of players carry the ball, with Trenton Telford taking top numbers with a 94 yard three carry performance. Jack Farley added 76 yards off three carries while Jacob Staidl and Zack Cops both obtained 71 yards on five and six carries respectively.
The Cats started the game on offense and were able to get one of their three lone first downs during the drive. During the punt the Titans' Austin Lange was able to get to the punter due to a fumbled snap, tackling the punter to give the Titans the ball on the 33 yard line.
After stopping them dead in their tracks, the Titans commenced an onslaught that would eventually start the mercy clock.
Lange continued to make the Cats pay for their mistakes, going 33 yards for the teedee rush on the first play of the drive. The extra point kick was short, giving the Titans a 6-0 lead.
The Cats offense started a long string of three and outs on their ensuing drive. Staidl opened the drive with a 22 yard rush which was followed by another touchdown, this time from Hunter Borchert who scored from 28 yards out. Again the kick was no good, bouncing off the left upright to give the Titans the 12-0 lead only minutes into the game.
The Titans next offensive push would also result in a score. Riley Marquardt started the drive off with a hard hitting run that saw him break three tackles on his way to the 7 yard line for a net gain of 26 yards. Marquardt finished the drive on a 1 yard scamper into the end zone.
After another three and out by the Cats, the Titans nearly gave up a turnover. On first down with the ball on the 49 yard line of the Cats, the Titans experienced a fumbled snap. But a quick reacting Farley turned the fumble into positive yardage, scooping the ball he slipped out to the Titans sideline and sprinted his way to the 29 yard line.
Zack Cops finished the drive off the next play to bring the Titans to a 24-0 lead.
To start the second quarter the Titans tagged on another teedee, this time from Staidl who crossed in from three yards out.
After another three and out by the Cats Farley was able to break off one of the longest runs of the night, going 60 yards to the teedee and the 37-0 lead.
Trenton Telford took the biggest play honors Friday night on the Titans next offensive possession. Three plays into the drive Telford took the hand off and was off to the races, going 74 yards untouched to the end zone, furthering the Titans lead to 43-0.
But Telford wasn't done yet. After forcing another three and out, the Titans' offense added one final score to their already exceptional first half effort. On this one Telford found daylight after a well timed juke out of a Cats defender, going 25 yards to the 49-0 lead which would be all the Titans wanted in this one.
The Cats were able to finally make it to pay dirt in the final seconds of the fourth quarter, thanks to a Nathan Montez two yard scamper, bringing the games final score to 49-6.
Though they did get in once the defense of the Titans was not to be trifled with. All game long the Titans fans were treated to a swarming defense that hit hard and tackled with expert form.
"We do a lot of work on technique tackles, we have spent so much time on these guys teaching them good tackling skills and it shows when they are swarming around the ball like they were tonight," said Lange. "We don't hit during the week, which goes to my old coaches theory from college that hungry dogs hunt better. And our guys were definitely hungry tonight."