BELL: Marysville leads all-time series 23-20
air toward the end zone where it was picked off by a Capital Christian player at the 5-yard line. The Cougars would chew up the game clock with a long drive that resulted in a score and quickly ended the upset bid by the Indians.
The loss against Capital Christian ended a tough three-game stretch for Marysville that saw them go 1-2, which also included a loss to a loaded Sutter squad ranked No. 1 in the Northern Section Division III Media Poll and a win over a Bear River team ranked in the Sacramento Bee’s Top 20.
“It was a tough loss to swallow because we just made too many mistakes and started to fall back into some of our old habits,” Meyer said. “But we really got out of this three-game stretch what we wanted and that was to become a tougher and stronger team mentally with the drive to keep getting better from here.”
On the other hand, Lindhurst (2-2, 1-0) is coming into the game with a little bit of momentum.
The Blazers have won two straight games, including their GEL opener last week in a 33-14 victory over Mesa Verde as Hunter Merritt scored two rushing touchdowns and Miles Pennington, the reigning Appeal-Democrat Athlete of the Week, returned an interception for a touchdown, his third in four games this season.
Penalties and miscues had been a problem through the first three games for the Blazers as drives stalled and opposing offenses extended their drives. In the second half of a 35-21 win over Las Plumas in Week Three, the Blazers finally put together the type of game coach Sean Schneider was looking for as the team cut down on penalties and mistakes and pulled away for the win. That was the case last week as Lindhurst held onto a 20-14 lead in the third quarter before scoring 13 unanswered points to secure the win over Mesa Verde.
“We made more plays without mistakes and that helped us get into a little bit of a groove offensively,” Schneider said. “That’s something we have to continue, especially against a tough team like Marysville.”
Marysville has dominated the rivalry in recent years with wins in the last six games, including a dominating 37-0 victory at Dean Miller Stadium last year. Taking away the forfeit win in 2011, the Indians have beaten the Blazers by an average of 35 points per game.
Seeking their first win of the rivalry since a 35-18 win in 2009, the Blazers last saw a string of success in the series when they won four straight games from 2004 to 2007. Schneider said the Blazers know it’s going to take a huge effort to try and go into War Memorial Stadium and come away with a win.
“Marysville has a big, physical team and it should be a physical ball game,” Schneider said. “If our team wants to get a win against Marysville, it’s going to take a great game and we have to rise to the occasion.”
Added Meyer: “With a rivalry game, you have to cut away the hype and control your emotions because it usually plays a huge part in who wins or loses. Getting out to a big start is key and the team that ends up executing the best on both sides of the ball will likely come out the winner.”
Cullen Meyer Marysville coach
Sean Schneider Lindhurst coach