The Summit Tiger football team scored early and often in its season opener at Battle Mountain, coming away with a convincing 44-0 win on its rival’s home field.
“I was really happy with the effort the kids showed,” said Tiger head coach Dylan Hollingsworth.
Offense and defense both shined on the evening, but not without room for improvement, Hollingsworth said. “I want to take care of the ball better.”
The Tigers had four fumbles during the game, including two fumbled snaps, one that led to a turnover, and a fumbled interception that also led to a turnover.
“There is a lot of growth to happen between Week 1 and 2. We’ve got a lot of things to fix,” Hollingsworth said after the game. Eliminating penalties will likely be an area of focus this week in practice, along with work on the passing game.
But there wasn’t much need for passing Friday as the team ran for a total of 367 yards on 53 attempts.
Hollingsworth commended his team’s running game, led by junior running back Tristan McDonald, who rushed for 156 yards and two touchdowns on the night. Junior quarterback Luke Egging and senior back Zach Colvin also had strong gains on the ground. Egging went three for five passing.
“I thought the line performed very well,” Hollingsworth said.
McDonald was able to break free for a number of big runs, including a 39-yard touchdown run with 18 seconds left in the first half, giving the Tigers a 28-0 lead going into halftime.
The run came off of a pitch to the left, and was the first play from scrimmage after the Tiger defense forced a fumble on the previous play.
The series was a crushing blow for the Huskies just as their offense was showing signs of improvement, and they had forced the Tigers to punt on the previous drive.
The Tiger defense was the other big story on the night, holding Battle Mountain scoreless. The Tigers’ first score came off of an opening-drive defensive fumble recovery inside the Husky 10 yard line.
The defense generated a strong pass rush all night and got to the Huskies’ quarterback on a number of occasions, tallying nine sacks.
According to the Tiger coach, Summit held Battle Mountain to under 60 yards of offense and a single first down.
All and all it was a strong effort by a young team.
“We’re heavily loaded with sophomores,” Hollingsworth said earlier in the week.
Going forward, he’s looking for some of his guys to step up and take on more of a leadership role.
“The biggest challenge is leadership,” he said heading into last Friday’s game.
The Tigers will host Steamboat Springs in their home opener Friday night.
“Steamboat’s tough,” Hollingsworth said. “We better have our ducks in a row.”
From there the Tigers’ competition gets tougher as they face teams ranked Nos. 1, 6 and 4 in the state in consecutive weeks, with games against Silver Creek, Lutheran and D’Evelyn.
“We better have our big-boy pants on by Week 3,” Hollingsworth said.