Game Three: Good Things to Come

06/03/2019

Last Saturday on June 1st, was the home opening game three for the Des Moines Blaze. They took the field against the Kansas City Bulldogs who had won it all last season. Due to a slow start out of the Blaze, they had found themselves just one step behind the Bulldogs all game losing 26-31. Typically it's hard to find good fortune in a loss, but this game holds so much promise on the young season for this team.

Though it did not look that great on the scoreboard, the defense really had some upside in this game. The whole defense had hustle and flew to the football on almost every play while the front seven did an awesome job in eliminating their run game only allowing 12 rushing yards all game on what is a pretty consistent backfield for the Bulldogs.

As far as how the Blaze offense performed, their production improved immensely as the game progressed. Once they found their groove they consistently drove down the field almost the whole second half with quarterback Robert Jones connecting with his receivers racking up the possession catches on a level most defined as automatic. Jones threw for a season high 227 yards.


PLAYER SPOTLIGHT

Normally it's Jeremy Batiste who is most notable in the run game, he still put up a very honorable performance this week with two touchdowns. But this week is about a player who made a foundational impact early in the game when nobody else was making production and that's why this week's player spotlight goes to Lamar Sayles Jr. He had a few explosive runs in the first quarter and was the first man in the end zone for the Blaze.

If it weren't for Sayles' high effort early in the game who knows where the Blaze momentum would have gone. He very well set the tone for the team the rest of the game. Sayles finished with 52 yards in 11 attempts and 1 touchdown.

Summarizing how the game went, the Des Moines Blaze had a better second half than the Bulldogs. There is really something special with what the Blaze have on offense with a well balanced running and passing game that can only get better.


"We're exactly where we need to be" 

                                          -Head coach Tyrone Tyler after the game

    What really beat the team was time management and lack of urgency on offense late in the game. But those are the easy, disciplinary changes that don't take long to correct, there is a lot of football left in the season and a postseason rematch with Kansas City is something we should all be longing for.

But for now, the Blaze shift their focus to next week where they travel to St. Louis to play the Missouri Valley Pitbulls. The Blaze's goal this week is to eliminate big plays, especially from the opposing quarterback Arlando Bailey as he is very productive with the receivers around him.

Just WHAT Just WHO Just BLAZE!!

Date and Time: Sat, June 8th, 7:00 pm

Where: Lutheran High School

Photo Credit: Michelle Groom