Outlaws football has first road test
By Thorn Compton
RAWLINS — After two games in the friendly confines of Outlaws Stadium, the Rawlins High School football team hits the road for Green River to take on the Wolves in a non-conference matchup tonight.
The Outlaws are riding a two-game winning streak to open up the season, having defeated Craig, Colo., and Lyman the last two weeks.
Even though they defeated Lyman by 13 points last week, Rawlins head coach Corey Wheeler wasn’t happy with many facets of his team’s performance.
Mainly it was the special teams play that gave Wheeler fits, as they lost the field position battle to the Eagles all night.
“We changed a lot of things special teams wise in practice this week,” Wheeler said before their final walk-through Thursday. “We repped it a lot this week and went over our responsibilities so hopefully that’s better. We can’t have another game like last Friday when we gave up such great field position.”
On top of working on special teams all week, Wheeler said they moved some starters into the special teams roles, mainly on kickoffs.
Given the Outlaws have had some problems with stamina in the first two games, senior quarterback Trey Young went down with a cramp in the fourth quarter against Lyman, Wheeler said this is a necessary evil his team will just have to work through.
“It’s what we have to do,” Wheeler said. “We don’t have another choice. We have to get our special teams sured-up.”
The other problem Wheeler had immediately after the game Friday was the play of his offensive line. However, that turned out to be a quick reaction from Wheeler, who said after watching film that his line actually played a good game.
“Our running backs were missing some holes and Young was taking too far of drop backs,” Wheeler said. “In film we were showing the backs where to hit the hole and that should be better this week.”
Sophomore standout running back Damon Taylor had a good game against Lyman, but most of his great runs came in the second half.
Wheeler said they have been working with Taylor all week in practice on where to hit the line so he can be most effective.
“We changed his attack point on our runs,” Wheeler said. “Just trying to get him away from running toward the sideline and work with his blockers.
“We run a zone scheme that works best when you hit it up inside so you can get those back side cut lanes.”
When it comes to their opponent this week, Wheeler said Green River is a “do-it-all” kind of team.
“They had over 500 total yards last week in their win against Riverton,” Wheeler said. “If we execute and do our jobs and stay in our lanes on defense we should be able to hold them though.”
What Wheeler said he really wants from his team this week is to finally live up to their potential on the offensive side of the ball.
“We haven’t really exploded on offense like I think we can the past two games,” Wheeler said. “If we can fly around on defense and get our offense going, I think we will be fine. It’ll be a good test, they are big and physical and well coached.
“It’s going to be a fight.”
Rawlins will look to bring that fight starting at 7 p.m. in Green River tonight.