ROCK SPRINGS — There’s never been a perfect game of football played, but Friday night’s home opener for the Rock Springs Tigers was as close as it gets. Rock Springs’ 40-7 victory over the Laramie Plainsmen not only gave them the first victory of the season, the team’s confidence has been boosted.
The Tigers certainly came to play Friday night, and with that said, here are a few postgame thoughts from the 33-point victory over Laramie.
Green River High School
sports coverage is brought to you by these amazing sponsors:
Before the season, head coach Mark Lenhardt had mentioned that helping his players get confidence back was a major focus for the team.
Those in attendance hopefully saw what I witnessed as crystal clear confidence. Rock Springs came out and manhandled the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. There was an expectation each play and execution granted those expectations to come to pass.
As a coach it can be hard to earn the trust and confidence of your players. Lenhardt clearly has his players trust and confidence. There is confidence in the system, the players, and this football team.
Rock Springs knew what they were going to do and they did just that.
Offense, Offense, Offense
Rock Springs executed the offense beautifully. In the first half the Tigers scored touchdowns on all four offensive possessions to give themselves a 27-0 advantage over Laramie at halftime.
What was more impressive was Rock Springs’ ability to throw the ball. Quarterback Seth Hymas made huge improvements throwing the ball this week compared to last week’s loss in Sheridan. He made some very difficult touchdown throws and his receivers made even better catches. He and Justis Reese refused to be stopped all night. The duo connected for two touchdowns. The deep ball still needs some work, but the passing game improved greatly this week.
The Tigers also shredded the Plainsmen defense on the ground. Rock Springs’ offensive line continues to improve and this run game will only get better as the season goes on.
The defensive line for Rock Springs was the overlooked influence in this game. All game long the defensive line did a superb job maintaining gaps and forcing pressure on Laramie’s quarterbacks. Even the running backs had a difficult time finding an open lane. There was no doubt that the defensive line played a huge role in Friday night’s win.
Along with the defensive line, the entirety of the Tiger defense rallied to the football. The energy on the defensive side of the ball was impressive to say at the least. Rock Springs also forced a handful of turnovers which sucked the life out of the Plainsmen.
Penalties Prevented Big Plays
If there was one aspect of this game that hurt the Tigers it was the two self inflicted penalties that prevented big plays. A fumble recovery by Rock Springs was waved off and a lengthy run was called back. This happened in last week’s game as well.
For the most part Rock Springs played a very clean game. To have those types of penalties happen on big plays can keep a coach up at night.
Rock Springs will host Cheyenne Central next Friday at 7:00 p.m. at Tiger Stadium.