Intensity key for Dayton against Truckee
DAYTON – A 55-6 loss will tell you wonders about the losing team’s intensity. So to ensure his team wasn’t going to suffer the same butt-whopping today against Truckee, linebacker Ricky Bodine was looking to hit someone in the mouth in Dayton’s final practice before its Northern 3A regional playoff game – even if it meant his own teammates.
The senior laid down a hard hit on a scout team running back, cleaned up on another scout teamer and went all out for a loose ball during the scout team’s attempt at an fake point-after attempt. The final display of intensity drew the ire of Dayton coach Rick Walker, but ratcheting the tempo was clearly Bodine’s intent.
“(The intensity) was flat today,” Bodine said. “I just wanted to pick it up because we’d really like to move up to the next level. If we knock of Truckee, we’re sitting so huge. I just really would have liked for the intensity to picked up today.”
The Dust Devils will need that level of intensity in order have a chance today (1 p.m. kickoff) after Truckee decimated them earlier in the season, handing them their first loss of the season and snapping their 6-0 start. The Wolverines racked up 455 yards in offense last time around and haven’t slowed down since as they went to a perfect 9-0 regular season record.
The key for Dayton will be for it to jump with a big play early on, which doesn’t necessarily mean scoring early.
“I think it can mean if they’re on offense and we weather the storm and they don’t score,” Walker said. “It might be the one big tackle or it could be a big block on a kick return. They don’t even have to score. Anything like that can do it.”
It will be hard for the Dust Devils to sustain a high level of intensity if they don’t get things going on both sides of the ball. In their previous meeting, Dayton managed just 170 yards while Truckee could do pretty much anything it wanted to.
“You try to make the adjustments the best you can,” Walker said. “The kids are a little more confident in their assignments so we won’t have those mistakes, which was a big thing. That’s all you can do. We coached them up as well as we can and we think it’s a pretty sound scheme. If we execute it? We’ll see.”