Bears drop MLL opener vs. Mustangs

By Vongni Yang, The Union Democrat October 14, 2013 08:10 pm

JACKSON — After losing 42-14 to the Argonaut Mustangs Friday night, Summerville Bear Humphrey Quirie said the game was lost earlier in the week.

Quirie pointed out that the Bears’ effort seemed to be lacking and the focus was not 100 percent there in the practices leading up to their Mother Lode League opener.

“I don’t think we practiced like we should have,” Quirie said. “Our head wasn’t in it. Our coaches alway say, ‘Perfect practice makes perfect.’ We just had a crummy practice. We came out playing with that same mentality as we had in practice. Nobody’s head was in it. Personally, that’s our fault.”

Bear senior co-captain Erik Wold concurred with Quirie’s statement.

“We need to pick up the intensity during practice,” Wold said. “We need to be more focused and more into practice. We need to practice harder. We need to act with the will to win.”

The Bears defense allowed 28 points in the first half and 14 in the fourth quarter to drop their league opener. 

Offensively, Summerville scored a season-low 14 points and was held to under 200 yards of total offense, the second lowest this year.

Quarterback Bryce Farrell threw for 130 yards on 12 of 29 passing, and the rushing attack gained only 55 total yards on 23 carries. Brick, a senior running back, led the Bears with 38 yards on 13 totes and scored two, one-yard touchdown runs in the first and fourth quarters. Only one Summerville run went for 10 yards or more.

“We can’t have a performance like that again for the rest of the year or it’ll be like that every week,” said Bears head coach Ben Watson. “We weren’t executing in the passing game or the line of scrimmage either. It was a total team offensive meltdown, and I’m the one in charge of that. So, unless we find a way to fix it, get the execution going, the rest of the season is going to be difficult.”

After giving up four touchdowns in the first half, the Bears defense clamped down and played better in the third quarter to hold the Mustangs out of the end zone.

Summerville pressured a quick three-and-out to start the second half, but the Bears could not capitalize offensively. 

After a Farrell nine-yard completion to sophomore wideout Jake Fulkerson, and a two-yard run by Brick that led to a first down, the Bears marched the ball near midfield. But three plays later, Summerville was forced to punt.

And again, the defense stood tall.

Led by Wold at inside linebacker, the Bears got the ball back when the Mustangs turned the ball over on downs deep in Summerville territory.

“I thought we played hard,” said Wold, who finished with 10 tackles. “We were all fired up. We just wanted to get something done. We wanted to get that big stop, maybe to light that spark for a comeback.”

But the Bears, for a second time, could not generate a productive drive on offense. A first-down Fulkerson run went for zero yards. A misdirection Quirie handoff gained five, and Farrell’s pass to wide receiver J.T. McCready hit the turf to bring up fourth down. After another incompletion, the Bears defense trotted back out onto the field.

The Mustangs double wing offense charged for just 47 yards rushing and three first downs in the scoreless third quarter. For the game, Argonaut rushed 43 times for 376 yards, with a big chunk of that coming in the first half. 

Mustangs head coach Rick Davis, a Sonora grad, collected the 100th win of his career.

“We had a couple of good times where we shut them down,” Quirie said. “I think we did good tonight, but we didn’t compete like we should have.”