Crimson quarterback Nick Lonergan is going to throw the football,
early and often.
But predictability isn't likely to make the Jacksonville offense any
easier to stop.
Look no further than last year's contest in Crimson country.
Lonergan lit up the Railers, completing 34 of 39 attempts for 440
yards and four touchdowns, leading Jacksonville to a 63-22 win in
Lincoln coach Jared Shaner is hoping his team is more prepared in
round two against Lonergan and company. Kickoff for the game is set
for 7 p.m.
"It's tough, because some of the things (the Crimsons) do are
completely different than anything else we'll see all year," said Shaner.
"Some teams we've seen this year, they run a spread offense
to run the ball.
"Not that they won't run the ball, but they're definitely going to
throw it if they can. They've got a great quarterback and great receivers. I
expect there to be a lot of balls in the air."
Just like last week, boys
To counter Jacksonville's aerial
attack, the Railer offense will look to repeat last week's efforts
in their 49-33 win over Canton. In their first win since 2008,
Lincoln chalked up 284 rushing yards on 45 attempts, effectively
chewing up yardage and time off the clock simultaneously.
But perhaps most important, the Railers successfully completed the
majority of their possessions with touchdowns. In 11 possessions,
Lincoln scored seven touchdowns and fumbled three times. The lone Railer possession without a touchdown or a fumble was a punt, on the
final possession of the game.
The touchdowns were a welcome sight to Shaner, particularly after
Lincoln's first team offense failed to find the end zone in two
separate first-and-goal opportunities in a season-opening 56-7 loss
"We've talked about that a lot this week," said Shaner when asked
about his team's newfound ability to finish drives with touchdowns.
"It's one thing getting it down there, but it's another thing to
really smell the end zone. I thought our kids did a great job of
getting in the end zone last week, and we're certainly hoping that
becomes a trend.
[to top of second column]
"But, to be honest, Jacksonville is a better team than Canton.
We've told them that we can't afford to give up three fumbles
this week. And finishing drives is even more important than it
was last week."
Despite last week's victory on the scoreboard, the
Railers also suffered a significant loss in personnel.
Junior linebacker and fullback Andy Krusz suffered a shoulder
injury that will keep him out of this week's contest and
"He's definitely out this week and probably for a while, I'd
say," said Shaner of Krusz's status. "He's been to see a
specialist and it will be next week before he knows anything else."
Krusz had been one of Lincoln's defensive catalysts through the
first two games, according to Shaner.
"He's one of our leaders," said Shaner. "It's tough any time
you see any kid, from any team, get hurt. But, that's part of the game.
There's going to be a lot of good players out on that field (against
Jacksonville) and it's a shame Andy can't be out there with them."
[By JUSTIN TIERNEY]