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Rockies looking for stops as Memorial comes to Plymouth

September 12, 2018
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Plymouth defensePLYMOUTH – A shoot out a week ago left the Plymouth Rockies shaking their head in a loss to Northridge.

“A couple of plays in that game affected the outcome,” said Plymouth head coach John Barron. “The kick that wasn’t ruled a touchback, the next snap we get a safety, that was a big call. There were obviously some good things we did in all phases of the game but obviously we just didn’t play well enough defensively to win any game.
“If you look at what we’ve done we played a sort of stacked defense week one at East Noble and we didn’t play very well there,” said Barron. “Week two we played our base defense and that’s the best we’ve played. We went to a four man front because Warsaw was more of a dive option team right now and that’s what we played was the dive. We stayed with that front and I don’t feel like I prepared our linebackers well enough to make the reads (against Northridge). What we are going to do is go back to our 3-4 and make those adjustments.”
“We feel like our offense has found some rhythym,” said Barron. “You say that and then every week you really have no idea how another team is going to try and defend you. We have formations and schemes in that it’s really hard to double the split ends, or pay attention to any one kid.”
It’s a pretty good litmus test of what you are doing well when you see what a coach like Tom Wogoman (Northridge) tries to take away, because he’s usually successful at taking away something,” said Barron. “That left us Blake Reed to go for over 240 yards and we really threw the ball pretty well.”
“We really like our offensive line,” said Barron. “Our tackles (Andrew Himes and Kendal Himes) are very big and athletic our guards are perfect high school guards in Crawford and Leazenby and Jackson Lee has been really good in moving to center. It allows us to do some things with our schemes to open things up. I think they figured some things out and we continue to get some pretty good blocking on the perimeter.”
“Part of the execution for the season so far as our game plan worked pretty well which was scoring that many points,” said Barron. “The other half though defensively we aren’t going to beat anybody if we continue to give up that many points.”
Another NLC opponent comes to Plymouth this week in Elkhart Memorial and one that presents a host of problems for a defense looking for itself.
“They (Memorial) are much better than what they have been,” said Barron. “Coach (Scott) Shaw has finally got a lot of things in place, they won their first NLC game since he’s been there against Goshen, they really had Warsaw beat but fumbled twice inside the ten.
“They have a quarterback that throws the ball well,” said Barron. “They start a lot of sophomores on defense but they all run to the ball really well. I think their strength is their offense. They can throw it. They’ve used two or three different running backs who’ve all looked good. They look a lot like us offensively.”
“We simply have to play better defense. We need to play aggressive football on defense. We are playing aggressively on offense but we aren’t on defense. We have to tackle better, this team is explosive. They have moved the ball on every team they’ve played. We can’t give up five touchdowns.”
Game time at the Rockpile is 7 p.m.

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