Lege's Bulldogs focused on improving

IOTA - Looking for the positives in a 0-3 season isn’t easy, but Iota has had its moments; they’ve just been few and far in between.

But as the Bulldogs prepare for their fourth game of the season, a home match-up against the South Beauregard Golden Knights, they are also looking to finally piece together a full game of good moments.

“The hope is that we’ll continue to improve each week,” said Neal Legé, Iota football coach.

Improvements were seen last week. Against Lake Arthur, the Bulldogs put up two touchdowns and were in a tight game at half time. A complete U-turn from the week before where St. Edmund was up 35-0 at the half.

But Iota has a long way to go.

Each time Iota gets a positive drive, something happens; an interception, a fumble, a penalty, a missed block, something.

“Our issues are coming from the mental side,” said Legé.

The biggest issue for the Dogs, according to Legé, has been blocking. Missed blocks and not taking on opponents schematically correct have hurt the Bulldogs in key moments of their games. Case in point, in its first game, Iota was driving to go up two touchdowns on Vinton, a missed block allowed D.J. Reed to go after Bulldogs quarterback Thomas Murrell, the ball was fumbled and taken 61 yards back to the house for six points. It was a 12 point turnaround a momentum changer. It seems like every game for Iota has had this happen, some earlier than others. But, as Legé points out, Iota expected to have to take its lumps early.

“We did a little better last week and we’re just hoping we continue to improve and finally put it together,” he said. “We don’t want the youth factor to be a crutch, but when you are starting a young team, growing pains are expected.”

Getting good play offensively is only half the battle for the Bulldogs as the Golden Knights’ defense returns six-a defensive end, two defensive tackles and three defensive backs.

The 4-3 scheme has worked well for South Beauregard allowing an average of only 16 points per game thus far this season.

Meanwhile, the Golden Knights offense is scoring an average of 25.3 points per week. Needless to say Iota’s defense will have its hands full with four returning starters and a star tailback for South Beauregard.

The Knights return their tackles, a wide receiver and tight end, but their tailback is the offensive story.

“He has really good vision of the field,” said Leg.

He also benefits from a strong offensive line that averages about 232 pounds and ranges from 190 to 300 pounds. But still, the cuts he makes, according to Legé, on the field are just part of his field vision.

When the two teams faced each other last year, mistakes were the deciding factor. The Golden Knights didn’t make many and the Bulldogs did, helping lead to a 36-14 victory for South Bearegard on their home field.

Iota isn’t the only team dealing with change this year as the Golden Knights have their own adjusting to do. South Beauregard was a member of 4-2A last year, but this year the Golden Knights are a member of 4-3A.

At Monday’s practice, Iota was once again at full strength, something that the team has not had the luxury of since week one for a variety of reasons–toe injuries, shoulder injuries, etc.

“We’re doing better (injury wise),” said Legé.

A full roster is expected on the field at Bulldog Stadium Friday at 7 p.m. when Iota faces South Beauregard.

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