Defense set the tone for Tigers, Grizzlies |

Defense set the tone for Tigers, Grizzlies

by Dave Price

Defense set the tone last Friday in Galena’s 27-7 victory against Douglas in the Sierra League football opener for both teams.

Just consider that both teams settled for season-lows in point production — Galena came with a 42.8-point per game average and Douglas an 18.2 average.

The Grizzlies’ Ben Barnard was limited to 146 yards and two touchdowns on 24 rushing attempts — well below his 200-yard average, and of that total, 50 yards came on one carry in the fourth quarter. The Tigers also received an assist from special teams when Zach Kinder and Andrew Jensen blocked PAT attempts and Kyle Adams blocked a field goal attempt.

On the other hand, Douglas finished the night with 102 yards passing and 100 yards rushing. Galena’s defense intercepted two passes, recovered a fumble and had four sacks. The first of those fumbles came in the second quarter after the Tigers had moved to the Galena 38.

GOOD START: Douglas came out strong by holding Galena to three-and-out on the game’s opening series, with Kinder applying pressure on quarterback Brock Raggio’s incomplete third down pass.

Then the Tigers mounted a 10-play drive that took nearly 5 minutes off the clock, highlighted by Nick Abreu’s 9-yard sweep on third-and-2 and a 20-yard pass from quarterback Wes Hundley to Kaleb Foster on fourth-and-2.

TIGERS CAPITALIZE: The Tigers did turn the ball over on an interception at the Galena 10, however, the defense got the ball back one play later when Taylor Souza stripped the ball and Dalton Grissel recovered at the 18. The Tigers capitalized on the opportunity. Hundley ran for 5 yards, then completed back-to-back passes to Souza for gains of 5 and 9 yards to set up first-and-goal from the 4. On the next play, Abreu followed the right side of his line into the end zone to cut Galena’s lead to 13-7.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING: From an individual standpoint, Abreu rushed for 59 yards on 13 carries. Hundley completed 15 of 20 passes for 102 yards and one interception. AJ Pfaffenberger had six receptions for 56 yards.

NEXT UP: Douglas (0-1, 1-5) visits Damonte Ranch (0-1, 4-2) on Friday for a 7 p.m. league contest.