Offensive Efficiency -- Our goal this week was to come out, establish our running game and possess the ability to throw the ball when we needed to. We did exactly that. Seven players, led by Calvin Pollard's 165 yards on 9 carries and Andrew Owens' 112 yards on 4 carries, combined for over 300 yards of rushing. Kevin LaCoste made great decisions throughout the night hitting four different receivers (Owens, Tadei, Ruiz, and Riser), throwing for a touchdown, and finishing with a 111.4 QB rating. Each offensive possession in the first half resulted in a touchdown and we converted all but one 3rd down throughout the entire game. When an offense can operate that efficiently in a contest, the result is going to be positive more often than not.
Pitching a Shutout -- Holding a team scoreless is the goal of every defense. Coach Foust's scheme was well-executed in a total team effort from the defense. Despite only causing one turnover, Warrenton was held scoreless for the second year in a row. Seaside's defense was the eighth-best scoring defense in the state last year and we picked up right where we left off last year. A strong effort from our secondary and consistent pressure on the QB prevented Warrenton from throwing the ball with consistency all night. We strive to take away a team's particular strength and force them into relying on other aspects of their game and that is exactly what we were able to do to Warrenton.
Special Teams Scoring -- It took us nine games last year to return a kick for a score. It only took us a half of a contest this season to get our special teams going with a 64 yard punt return for a touchdown from Andrew Owens. A second punt return for a touchdown by Justin Ruiz was called back due to a block in the back but these plays solidified the belief that our special teams can score at the drop of a hat, giving us an additional weapon throughout the year.
No Turnovers -- An achilles heel of ours last year, we finished the night without putting the ball on the ground or throwing an interception. This will continue to be critical to our success as we make a run at a Cowapa League title.
Everyone Plays -- It's always a great night when everyone on the team gets an opportunity to play in a varsity contest. It was great to see our JV kids go out in the second half and be rewarded for their hard work throughout the preseason. The fact that they were able to move the ball and preserve the shutout was just icing on the cake. Additionally, after spending the previous season as a very young and inexperienced group it was fantastic to see our JV squad prevail over Warrenton on Thursday night, posting a final score of 40-8.
Outstanding Crowd -- Despite a game on the road during a holiday weekend, the Seaside faithful showed up in force at Warrenton. It was great to see a sea of red in the stands that clearly outshadowed the Warriors in attendance at their home field. Our athletes and coaches appreciate the support and hope it is just a glimpse into what we can expect throughout the season from our fans. We expect our fans to embody the spirit of MOC whether at home or on the road…thank you for being there to cheer us on.
Penalties -- Some penalties are to be expected in the first game out, but I felt they were excessive. There were some mental mistakes that led to down and distance situations that were avoidable. The good news is that these can be cleaned up with more reps in practice.
Always a great night for the Gulls when there's nothing to report here!