Things are heating up
Offensively the Pleasanton Eagles seem to be soaring in the right direction to kick off the 2012-2013 season. Defensively, there are still a few areas of concern, but all in all Coach Tab Dumont was pleased with their performance against the South Side Cardinals. Friday night, the Kennedy Rockets come to town for the final rehearsal before the start of the regular season.
Southside Scrimmage- The Eagles offense went through a number of their basic sets, with an emphasis of improving their running game. When it was all said and done, the Eagles had scored a total of four touchdowns, three of which came via the running game.
“The scrimmage I thought was very positive. Offensively, we scored four times with our 1s and they scored two times with their 1s. Against the 2s, we got inside the 20-25 yard line and they killed our drive. They were able to score twice against our second team,” stated Pleasanton Head Football Coach, Tab Dumont.
Offensively, Luke Walters and staff led the Eagles out onto the field hoping to show more positives than negatives. Aside from four highlight touchdowns, one of the biggest things that stuck out was the fact Pleasanton had 0 negative plays or QB sacks.
“Nothing was negative offensively. We had no sacks on our QB and no negative plays yardage wise. I thought the offensive line did well. Southside threw a number of blitzes and things we had not worked on at us and our kids adjusted well I felt. The pass protection was good and the run block was good. We also caught the ball really well on the field, despite dropping one ball that was catchable,” stated Coach Dumont.
Last season, Pleasanton’s passing game ranked among the best in the area stat wise. The issues occurred once the Eagles got inside the red-zone and this is when they were noneffactive in their running game. For three out of four touchdowns to be scored in the opening scrimmage was at least a step in the right direction.
“Our running game was decent. I was proud of the improvement thus far, but we have a ways to do. Luke also threw the ball well. I expected the offense to be ahead of our defense, because we have nine kids back offensively. Another positive was we had eight kids touch the ball offensively, so it is not just one or two guys carrying the weight,” added Dumont.
The Eagles scored, courtesy of two Grant Jackson touchdown runs, a Zade Llamas long touchdown run and a nice touchdown catch on a connection from Walters to Jacob Jandt.
Defensively, the Eagles showed spark at times of improvement, but depth seemed to be an issue as Southside scored twice on the second team defense.
“I thought the first 12 plays defensively were the best I had seen in a long time around here. We tackled well and had a lot of enthusiasm. On their third series, they got their first 1st down on pass interference, which means we were being aggressive. On the downside of things, we didn’t have eleven guys clicking the entire scrimmage. We lost our enthusiasm and intensity and our tackling and discipline began to fade off. I am not sure that we got better as the scrimmage went on which is something that should have happened. We are better with that said than last year, but have a ways to go. We have to get more of a push from our defensive front in order to be successful,” stated Coach Tab Dumont.
One of the positions that stood out for Dumont was the free safetys.
“I thought those guys played pretty well. This was a very good opponent that we went against and one who is picked to go to the 4A playoffs for the third straight season. This was the most competition we had faced in an opening scrimmage in a few years,” stated Coach Dumont.
When asked what was one of the biggest concerns defensively, Dumont pointed to the secondary.
“We were good at stopping the run overall, but not when it came to stopping the pass. We have to go back, look at the video and see where we made mistakes. Once we find the mistakes, we have to correct them and move forward against Kennedy,” stated Dumont in closing.
Kennedy Rockets- The Eagles will host their traditional scrimmage foe Kennedy High School on Friday night. The Rockets are once again in 29-4A, where they are picked to finish 6th place out of eight teams. The Rockets are picked behind McCollum, Medina Valley, Floresville, Southside and Harlandale.
“They are going to be very multiple on offense. They get into a lot of exotic and weird formations. They run the ball well and it will be a good challenge for us. Defensively, they are going to base out of a 4-3 and they will show a lot of blitz packages to us. It will be good work for our kids to pick up on their stunts,” Tab Dumont stated.
The Rockets will return seven offensive and eight defensive starters on the squad led by Richard Cerda. This will be the first scrimmage for the Rockets, due to the fact they played fall ball this past season under UIL-4A.
One interesting fact about the Rockets is the fact their success on the football field is not something they can brag about much. The Rockets have made the playoffs only four times in the history, which came in 2009, 1991, 1972 and 1968. Despite being picked to finish on the outside looking in, Kennedy is hoping to prove people wrong.
The Rockets will look for their two offensive studs in RB Damian Veloz and WR Jason Flores to lead the way. Last season, Veloz finished with 178 rushes for 943 yards and 15 TDs along with 7-catches for 99 yards and 3 touchdowns. As far as Flores is concerned, he caught 7 passes for 103 yards and 1 touchdown.
“I am excited to see how we come out and play at home Friday night. We have some areas that need to see improvement and I am hoping we get it done against Kennedy. We have to keep getting better on our fundamentals and get ready for another good test. They had fall ball, so this will be their first scrimmage. We are in a hole and we cannot get fancy. We have to work on the basics to get better,” stated Pleasanton’s Tab Dumont, in closing.
The freshmen and Jv will begin at 5:00 p.m. on Friday. The freshmen will play on the practice field and the Jv on the game field. The varsity will begin around 6:30 p.m. on the varsity field.
Note: Coach Dumont wanted to let everyone know photo day will be this Thursday at 4:00 p.m. All of the public including fans and parents are welcome to come out to the event.
For Eagle video highlights click here.