Iota in search of first victory

IOTA – In practice, it has been going perfectly to plan, but somewhere between a week of practice and “Friday Night Lights”, things have not gone perfectly for the Iota Bulldogs; far from it, actually.

“I thought last week we had a good week of practice, then we get on the field and I don’t know what happened,” said Bulldogs coach Neal Legé. “We lose focus somewhere and we forget what we are doing.”

Instead of staring at a challenge in Lake Arthur after a 2-0 start, the Bulldogs are sitting on a 0-2 record and staring at a very solid Tigers football team that is destined to give Iota fits.

“They execute well. It’s simple what they do, but very effective,” said Legé.

It’s a challenge, but it’s not an insurmountable one for Iota.

The hard road begins in Lake Arthur Friday as the Bulldogs and Tigers will lock up for their Week Three match up.

While the Bulldogs’ season has begun on the right foot, the Tigers’ season has not. Opening the season with a home victory (35-14) over Hamilton Christian followed by a Week Two 34-7 victory at Delcambre.

In those two games, the Tigers averaged 34.5 points and allowed an average of 10.5 points in those games. Those victories have come at the hands of a solid defense and offense.

“They (Lake Arthur) do a real good job with their offense; guys go where they’re supposed to blocking wise; backs run the ball hard,” said Legé. “[Defensively,] they get to the ball early.”  

Iota, meanwhile, has been looking for four solid quarters of play, according to Legé.

“We have to have a more concerted effort,” he said. “We need to have better focus.”

And before Iota can start to game plan for Lake Arthur, the Bulldogs must first correct their issues.

“Before you can worry about an opponent, you have to fix yourself, that’s where we are at,” said Legé.

Last week those mistakes included three lost fumbles, an interception and zero points on offense. On defense, missed tackles and assignments helped St. Edmund gain 388 yards.

But as Iota looks forward, they can begin building on positives from last week, including more consistent play in the second half against St. Edmund. During that time, the Bulldogs held the Blue Jays to only six points and moved the ball better on offense.

“When we went back and looked at the film it was horrendous,” said Legé. “The mental mistakes we made ... bottom line we have to correct that before anything else.

“Once we got in a rhythm offensively, we were moving the ball.”

The Bulldogs are also still without running back Adam Ardoin, who’s separated shoulder still has him week to week. They also lost Zachary Hebert for the time being as he suffered a grade two high ankle sprain. The good news is for the Bulldogs is that Tyler Buschnell, who sees extensive action on the offensive line, returned to practice Monday and is trying to give it a go this week after suffering a foot injury in Week One. Legé said that the Bulldogs are trying to find some consistency along the offensive line as well but that has been made difficult with injuries already this season.

So as Iota turns the page on Week Two and focus on Week Three, the Bulldogs are working in practice to fix the mental errors and translate it onto the field Friday, Sept. 20, at 7 p.m.

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