Plainsmen look for silver linings in Week 2 loss to Heritage
Evergreen Plainsmen (1-1)
Week 1: Evergreen 26, Columbia River 13
Week 2: Heritage 34, Evergreen 7
Next: Hudson’s Bay vs. Evergreen, 7:30 p.m. at McKenzie Stadium
From Evergreen’s point of view, this was not nearly as bad as the score indicates. The Plainsmen do not feel they were blown out.
A promising, yet tough third quarter: Evergreen was down 22-0 at the half but showed signs of life immediately in the third quarter. The Plainsmen had gained 36 yards on five plays and were threatening.
Then, a dreaded turnover.
Still, the defense was motivated, too. Evergreen stuffed Heritage’s next three plays and the Timberwolves punted.
More Evergreen momentum.
The Plainsmen would go 74 yards on 13 plays to score a touchdown, making it 22-7.
Once again, Evergreen’s defense was up to the task. Another Heritage punt. We’re still in the third quarter here, and Evergreen has a chance to make it a one-touchdown game.
Instead, another turnover.
Heritage ran one more play in the third quarter and scored on that same drive into the fourth quarter for a 28-7 lead.
Statistically, it was all Evergreen in that third quarter:
The Plainsmen ran 24 plays for 129 yards while Heritage had nine offensive plays for 24 yards. The two turnovers crushed Evergreen’s hopes.
More turnover trouble: Evergreen stopped Heritage on the first two drives of the game, but Heritage took advantage of a turnover to score its first touchdown. And late in the game, there was another Evergreen turnover that turned into a Timberwolves touchdown.
Rushing Plainsmen: Evergreen did win the rushing stat. The Plainsmen got 113 yards on the ground from Eli Vaa-Leiataua. In all, Evergreen totalled 211 yards rushing.
What did Terry Hyde learn about his team in Week 2? “Need to stay focused. Little mistakes turn into big problems.”
Coaching staff’s pick for MVP of offense: Eli Vaa-Leiataua with all those rushing yards and the touchdown for the Plainsmen. In fact, remember that third quarter? He had 88 yards on 16 carries in that stretch.
Coaching staff’s pick for MVP of defense: Serge Rusnak, with five tackles at or behind the line of scrimmage.
Thoughts on Week 3 vs. Hudson’s Bay: “Fast defense, confident offense, high-energy team,” Hyde said. A year ago, Hudson’s Bay beat Evergreen on a touchdown with 5 seconds left in the game.