Warrior football can’t overcome weather, Oriole offense in 45-6 loss

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Evan Schroeder stretches for a first down in Central’s Oct. 8 loss. (Photos by Bev Hamann.

Noah Diersen celebrates the Warriors’ touchdown.

By Willis Patenaude, Times-Register


The Central football team dropped its fourth straight game—a 45-6 loss—on Oct. 8, as injuries, inclement weather and a tough Springville Oriole squad wreaked havoc on the field and the scoreboard. 


Heading into the game, there were some questions about how the Warriors would control the Orioles’ dual threat quarterback Dylan DeMean, an efficient passer and the team’s leading rusher. The answer was simple: fundamental football, or in the motto of Bill Belichick, “just do your job.” 


“We need to make sure that we collapse the middle with our defensive line and make sure our outside linebackers force everything to the inside for our middle linebackers to fill. Everybody needs to stay disciplined in their assignments as well,” said coach Joe Koehn.


The same message applied for slowing down the aerial attack, as Koehn said the defense would be running the same coverage scheme it’s run all season. It was just a matter of the players executing, staying on assignment and doing their job. 


But the Warriors faced adversity from the beginning of the game, when starting quarterback Elliot Kelly had to be replaced by Nick Deitchler due to an injury on the thumb of his throwing hand. Then, a combination of the weather and a slow start had the Warrior defense on its heels and the offense struggling to move the ball. By halftime, the Orioles had scored 45 points. 


The Warrior defense was unable to generate pressure, allowing DeMean the pocket time to go 6-6 for 100 yards and three touchdowns. They also gave up 134 yards on the ground and three touchdowns. 


The team recorded 27.5 total tackles, but zero sacks and just two tackles for a loss. Noah Diersen led the defense with six tackles, followed by Kelly with five, Ryan Schroeder and Brandon Whittle with three apiece and Deitchler and Evan Schroeder with two apiece. Diersen and Whittle each had one tackle for a loss. 


After halftime, Koehn commented that the defense “stepped up,” creating three fumbles recovered by Kelly, Nate Shirbroun and Whittle. The Warriors held Springville to zero points, but the offensive woes couldn’t take advantage of the turnovers. 


Apart from the quarterback switch, the Central offense struggled to adapt to the rainy, slick conditions. 


“They had a hard time making cuts on our routes and getting our feet moving everywhere else. Obviously, as a coach, I need to find ways around that and make things work better when adversity like that is stacked against us,” Koehn said. 


As a result, the offense was slowed, as Deitchler completed just three of 15 passes for 24 yards. Evan Schroeder caught two of them for 15 yards and Shirbroun snagged the other for nine yards. The running game was also hampered, running for 29 yards on 31 carries, averaging a season low 0.9 yards per carry. Schroeder led the offense with 18 rushing yards, while Diersen ran for three yards and the team’s only touchdown. 


“They plugged up the middle for us, which held us from being able to get our power and ISO going. They filled gaps correctly and did a good job on defense to defend our run game. We tried to get the pass game going, but just couldn’t get the wheels turning,” Koehn said. 


The Warriors will look to get the wheels back in motion on Friday, Oct. 15, as they welcome the Central City Wildcats to the Dittmer Sports Complex. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. 

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