First-year Lewis and Clark football head coach Dave Hughes wants a seamless transition.
Hughes doesn’t plan to deviate much from the Lewis and Clark way – a formula that has resulted in 17 straight winning seasons. That recipe was apparent Friday in the efficient running of senior tailback Levi Taylor.
It was Taylor left and Taylor right as the visiting Tigers handled the Lake City Timberwolves 34-14.
Taylor appeared to pick up where he left off last year. He scored four touchdowns, three coming in a 27-0 start in the first half. The 6-foot-1, 205-pounder finished with a game-high 129 yards on 21 carries.
“That’s our zone offense and we’ve done it for a long time,” Hughes said. “We think we know what we’re doing there. We thought that Levi Taylor was going to have a good year and we hope that he continues to have a good year. We think he’s a special kid.”
What pleased Hughes the most was the play of his defense. The Tigers had to replace 10 starters.
“Obviously, when you have 10 new bodies in there you’re kind of anxious to see what happens,” Hughes said.
The Tigers did just fine.
For Lake City (0-2), meanwhile, it was a second straight week in which the young Timberwolves started poorly before finding their way in the second half.
It’s an early pattern that coach Van Troxel is already fed up with.
“The bottom line on all of this is they have to decide that this is important to them,” Troxel said of his players. “(Two weeks in a row) we showed up scared and then we come out and play hard in the second half.
“I loved the way they played in the second half, but they have to decide to play every play, every quarter. That’s partially from being young. But if we’re going to compete with the schedule we have, we have to compete every play.”
The Tigers outgained the T-Wolves 159-9 in the first half. The visitors had a slight edge in the final two quarters (156-148).
“When they decided to come out and play, they played pretty well,” Troxel said. “We have to grow up and mature and our seniors have to step forward.”
The Tigers took advantage of a poor snap over the punter’s head and a fumbled kickoff return on the T-Wolves’ first two possessions – mistakes the Tigers turned into a 14-0 lead 3:30 into the game.
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