by Larry Ham
If there’s one word that describes the Reedley College Football team this year, it’s inconsistency. So it wasn’t altogether surprising that after three straight impressive wins, the Tigers came up with a stinkerooni Saturday afternoon in Stockton, losing to the San Joaquin Delta Mustangs 28-16.
The overcast skies portended a gloomy afternoon for the Tigers, as they gave up touchdowns on Delta’s first three drives, and fell behind 28-3 at the half. Mustang Quarterback Adam Kennedy had all day to find open receivers, and he found them often, completing 20 of 23 passes on the afternoon for 200 yards and four touchdowns.
Offensively, the Tigers fell behind so quickly, they were forced to abandon their potent running game, as Quarterback Jeff Kidd aired it out 37 times, completing 22 for 302 yards, and two touchdowns to wide out Alphonse Coleman. But the problem that has plagued the Tigers all season long was apparent once again – an inability to punch the ball into the end zone. The Tiger’s red zone efficiency is right around 40 percent, meaning when they get the ball inside the opponent’s twenty-yard line, they score a touchdown less than half the time.
The second half was a different story defensively, as Reedley stopped San Joaquin Delta’s momentum, holding the Mustangs scoreless. By then it was too late to salvage the game, and the Tigers left Stockton knowing that to have any chance of playing in the post season, they must run the table and win their final three conference games. They host Modesto Junior College on Homecoming weekend this Saturday at one, and then end the conference season on the road against COS and Fresno City.
Is it possible to win these last three games against three quality opponents? Absolutely. The Tigers have the talent to get the job done, but they have to execute, especially defensively. Coach Randy Whited has said it often – offense wins games, defense wins championships. We shall soon see.
Weekly Report Card:
Special Teams: B
Player of the Game: Alphonse Coleman