It was the Davis High football team’s best offensive possession of the game and it hinted at what is possible when the Blue Devils mix the run and the pass effectively.
Taking over at its own 49-yard line with 3:41 to play in the opening quarter on Friday, DHS got powerful running by Winfred Roberson — especially an eight-yard pickup that got his team back to the original line of scrimmage after a first-down penalty.
The Devils and junior quarterback Quinten Jones also made big plays through the air as passes to Andre Foster for seven- and 13-yard gains both picked up new sets of downs on third-and-long.
The scoring march ended when Davis junior wideout Nate Curtis got behind the defense for a diving 38-yard touchdown reception.
Unfortunately for the locals, it was their only score of the game, and it came early in the second quarter of a 47-7 loss to Franklin at Brown Stadium.
Too many of the Blue Devils’ other drives — eight of the 11 including six of seven in the first half — ended after four or fewer plays on either a turnover or a punt.
On nearly every drive, it was one play or penalty resulting in negative yardage that overshadowed the positives.
“We fought and fought, but the mistakes will always kill you,” said DHS coach Marc Hicks. “We have to be better, it’s all mental.”
The fact that the Devil errors are of the mental rather than the physical variety, while frustrating for players and coaches, means there’s a silver lining for Davis: These mistakes can be eliminated with renewed focus. And that’s exactly what the Blue Devils (4-3, 0-2 Delta Valley Conference) plan to do — this week in practice and over their final three contests.
“We’ll fix it, we’ve just got to stay together and keep fighting,” Hicks added. “We’ve got three games left. Anything’s possible, but we’ve got to eliminate the mistakes. That’s everything.”
There is no shortage of senior leadership on this DHS squad, and guys like Eli Castro, Brendan MacDonald and Bailey Murray know what needs to be done.
“We need to start making tackles. We missed way too many tackles and we just need to keep up the effort,” Murray, a two-way lineman, said after Friday’s game, adding that the Devils would examine what they did wrong over the weekend, then “starting Monday, we need to put it out of our mind and focus on Laguna Creek.”
DHS travels to Elk Grove this week to take on the Cardinals (1-6, 0-2), who lost 35-28 to Monterey Trail on Friday. The Mustangs also beat Davis by seven points, 21-14 on Oct. 11.
— Reach Chris Saur at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-747-8049.