NHS gridders look to rob Santa Ynez Pirates
By Jesse Phelps
The Blue and Gold will try again
on Friday night to get its first win of the year on the road.
After last week's blowout loss to defending CIF Southern Section
champs Moorpark, the Nordhoff football varsity and junior varsity
teams will hook up with familiar nonleague foe Santa Ynez.
Last year, the two teams also met early in the season. The Rangers,
led by James Quirino and Ryan Whitcomb, used the energy of the
home crowd and capitalized on several turnovers and an efficient
run game to topple the Pirates, 28-14.
This year's battle promises more smash-mouth football, but the
Rangers will have to find their intensity if they expect to duplicate
last year's win on the road.
Ranger head coach Cliff Farrar said the Pirate offense is versatile
and changes depending on who they have on the field at the quarterback
"Santa Ynez is a team with good speed and the offensive
line does a good job of getting off the ball," said Farrar.
"Two kids share time at quarterback and one is more of a
runner, the other more of a passer."
Farrar said the two teams know each other very well and it'll
come down to "who can stop the other guy."
On the other side of the ball, Santa Ynez runs a 50 defense,
which can potentially expose its secondary, according to Farrar.
Its defensive backs are often left in man coverage, which could
mean a breakout game for Andy Doyle or other Ranger receivers.
"We feel Andy Doyle is a very good receiver and we'll look
to see what matchups we can create there," said Farrar.
Nevertheless, the coach also stressed that in last week's loss,
the Rangers needed to control the ball better with the run.
"We're a run-first team," he said. "We'll establish
the run, then look to play-action and other forms of passing.
We didn't feel we ran enough last week. We have good size linemen
who are getting off the ball. We've just got to put together
the kind of football we've been running the last 12 years."
The other aspect of the game Farrar feels his team needs to improve
upon is eliminating costly penalties. He said that his team looked
good in its scrimmage preceding the Moorpark loss. Yet due, perhaps,
to an unfamiliar signal caller with a different cadence, it ran
into difficulties during the loss, often jumping before the snap.
"We were disappointed because at the scrimmage we only had
two penalties," he said. "But in the game, it was just
way too many."
He pointed to his team's final first half possession against
the Musketeers as a perfect example of the debilitating effect
of penalties. "We were disappointed in the second quarter,"
said Farrar of a drive that stalled behind two movement penalties.
"That was disheartening because it could have been 13-7
at the half and instead we come away with nothing."
Santa Ynez, meanwhile, had problems of its own in a season-opening
14-10 loss at Paso Robles.
Both teams now head into this week's game with identical 0-1
records. The varsity game at 7:30 p.m. will be preceded by a
battle between the junior varsity squads at 4:30 p.m.
The Ojai Valley News
to the news