Bobcats look to rebound against Nixon-Smiley

Sept. 2, 2010 at 4:02 a.m.

The Bloomington Bobcats hope to rebound from a 46-7 opening week setback to Woodsboro when they host the Nixon-Smiley Mustangs Friday.

Despite starting the year off with a loss, Bloomington head coach Randy Perez was pleased with the effort and the way his team, which included 19 underclassmen, reacted in their first game of the season.

"I was really pleased with our younger kids," Perez said. "We've got a lot of freshmen and sophomores who have had to play big roles. Even though the score doesn't show it, I felt that they stepped up and competed."

Mustang head coach Carlton McKinney said this game gives his team, particularly the offensive line, an opportunity to get accustomed to the slot-T offense.

"It's a complex offense that we're trying to do a couple of different things," McKinney said.

Last year the Mustangs changed from a spread to a variation of the slot-T and this season Nixon-Smiley implemented the formation fully.

Last week the Mustangs got quality rushing efforts from running back Alex Hernandez, who carried the ball nine times for 94 yards and full back Joe Medina, who had 155 yards on 22 carries.

For Bobcats running back Eddie Sawal, the spread is coming easier for him in Bloomington's second week of game preparation.

"We've been running it since the beginning of practice and it's starting to become easier understanding it and running it," Sawal said. "I think we're getting a better perspective on things and how we're supposed to do it."

Added Perez: "Now that their understanding a little bit more you're going to start seeing better execution."

Defensively, McKinney stressed the importance of recognizing what the Bloomington offense will be doing out of the spread. Last week in their 21-7 win over Flatonia, the Bulldogs got their lone score on a Mustang mistake.

Bobcat outside linebacker Richie Villa said the team has been working on keying in on the opposing quarterback and running back to try and get in position for defensive stops.

"That's what hurt us against Woodsboro," Villa said. "We'll go after the quarterbacks and we'll realize afterwards it was a run and they ran up the middle and took about 20 yards on us."



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