Confidence abounds after huge victory for Flyers
Oct. 2, 2012 at 5:02 a.m.
Updated Oct. 3, 2012 at 5:03 a.m.
7 p.m. start in San Antonio
RECORDS: S.A. Christian 1-3, St. Joseph 1-4.
Last Friday night's 69-0 victory by St. Joseph over St. Dominic Savio may have been the most important of the season for the Flyers.
It was the opening of district play and homecoming night. It was also the first time St. Joseph walked onto a field in 2012 with its full force of players.
Seniors Jerry Vasquez and Eric Alvarez were back at the positions were they are the biggest threat, quarterback and receiver/running back. Cameron Zafereo was back at running back and the offensive line was completely healthy.
The healthy Flyers would dominate the visitors from Austin with a 69-point victory. Now, though, St. Joseph will try and continue its success from Friday night into this week's district match up with San Antonio Christian.
The Flyers already gained a slight edge against Christian with the Lions' Corey Robinson, a Notre Dame commit and son of NBA legend David Robinson, could miss the game with a minor Achilles injury.
FUMBLES CAUSE PROBLEMS FOR FLYERS
If there was one negative to take out of the 69-0 victory against Savio it would be the five fumbles St. Joseph began the game with. Even more troubling was that three of the four lost fumbles occurred inside the Savio 15-yard line.
The first two came on Alvarez runs, then three straight by Vasquez. Vasquez, who was playing in his first game in three weeks, fumbled once on a snap (which he recovered) and once on a hand off. He also lost a fumble on a scramble when the defender came from behind.
"We got to hold onto the ball," Auten said. "Next week we face a really good opponent and we have to get better."
None of the four lost fumbles by St. Joseph resulted in points for the Eagles. The Flyers' defense shut down Savio for the most part, allowing 162 total yards and only five first downs.
DEEP KICKOFF SUCCESS
St. Joseph showed its inexperience kicking off deep before the bye week and made it something to improve upon. The Flyers had done some kind of onside kick for most of their kick offs, including the opening kick of the season against Goliad.
It's worked and it hasn't. On one of the rare occasions St. Joseph had to kick off deep against Schulenburg, Jeffrey Lara returned it 90 yards for a touchdown.
The Flyers showed future opponents their ability to pin teams back deep in their own zone against Savio last Friday.
The Eagles returned a kickoff past their own 30 yard line five times out of a possible 11. The longest return brought the ball to the 44 yard line, which was the last of the night. While Sam Alvarado wasn't an easy tackle, the Flyers held their own when they kicked deep.
NEED TO REMAIN HEALTHY
Friday night's St. Joseph team was the one fans hoped to see in the first three weeks of the season. However, last Friday was the first game the Flyers had a, mostly, healthy line up.
It showed with St. Joseph racking up over 320 yards of total offense, 281 of which came on the ground, a special team's touchdown and two defensive touchdowns off of interceptions.
"I can't describe how well the offensive line played," Zafereo said after Friday night's victory. "We felt like we could go full speed for once and show teams what we can do."
With the exception of the five first-half fumbles, the Flyers played great football. The key to keeping that level of play up will be to remain healthy.
"I think you saw that impact in Cameron's running," Auten said. "The edges were sealed and we were able to do some things different."