Allowing one player to run for 278 yards in a game is not likely going to lead to a victory, but it is the other side of the ball that has been the biggest problem for Bristol Eastern’s football team this year.
The Lancers were down 32 points to Platt in the fourth quarter before they reached the end zone for the first time. That short drive was set up by a huge kickoff return from Treyvon Daniel that started Eastern in the red zone.
Despite the lack of scoring, the Lancers’ offense showed signs of improvement from the previous week’s 54-14 loss to Farmington, in which quarterback Bryce Curtin had seven turnovers.
“We did some things well tonight offensively,” Eastern head coach Anthony Julius said after the loss. “We had a couple of missed opportunities, but other than the one fumble we took care of the ball better tonight than we did in the last few weeks, so that’s a positive going forward. And like I told the team, we got [two] weeks of football left and we have to get this on the right track.”
The Lancers did a better job of extending drives against Platt after not converting any third downs in their matchup with Farmington. They still struggled to finish drives and put points on the scoreboard, but running back Alex Marshall said that comes with better execution.
“We just need to be consistent with how we play the game,” Marshall said. “We can’t have people make great blocks one play and then miss them completely [on] the next. You can’t win games like that.”
“We did some things well at times, sputtered in others,” Julius said. “We would go forward and then go backwards. It’s hard when we don’t have that offensive consistency to stay in the football game. ... It’s positive on first down and we can’t be negative on second down and put ourselves in a long yardage situation on third down.”
Eastern will look to have more offensive success in its final road game of the season at South Windsor. The Bobcats have allowed 14 points in each of their two wins and over 20 points in all six of their losses.
The Lancers should also have an easier time on defense after facing Platt running back Roberto Salas, who has put on a clinic against every opponent this season.
Julius said his defense needs to work on building consecutive stops and not letting up after one strong defensive play.
“We’ll play well on first down, give up a play on second down,” Julius said. “We force them to fourth down, we give up a big play. It’s unfortunate the last few weeks, it has kind of been our Achilles’ heel. Trying to get back and find that consistency is what the coaching staff and myself need to do going forward. Two games to go.”
Matt Hornick can be reached at (860) 973-1811 or firstname.lastname@example.org