Not the Start the Laramie Plainsmen Football Team Had Hoped For
The third-ranked Sheridan Broncs powered past the Laramie Plainsmen, 57-0, on Friday night at Deti Stadium in the season opener for both teams.
Sheridan (1-0) scored on its third offensive play of the game and never trailed in their 17th straight win over the Plainsmen.
Laramie head coach Paul Ronga said in the first quarter he felt his squad was in the game.
“We were excited, and things were manifesting, and we were doing things. Then, what happened was very uncharacteristic football took fold, and football play from our players that I haven’t seen all camp and all summer. The turnovers were crippling. We were moving. We were having success and uncharacteristic turnovers (happened). As you know, when you lose the turnover battle, you have a very slim chance of having any success, especially the amount of turnovers we had.”
The Plainsmen turned the ball over seven times. They had four fumbles and threw three interceptions, one of which was returned for a Sheridan touchdown.
Another aspect Coach Ronga pointed to was that his team was beaten upfront.
“We were getting beat on the line of scrimmage. We weren’t getting the protection that we needed. Our quarterback was being forced to do things he hasn’t done all camp, and then secondly, running the ball, we didn’t have any effect in that.”
Laramie finished with 40 yards rushing and was limited to 138 yards of total offense.
After the early deficit, the game was a stalemate through the rest of the first quarter. Both teams exchanged turnovers and punts during that time.
In the second, Sheridan broke the game open with four TDs. That included three scores in the last 3:42 of the half. It was 35-0 Broncs at halftime. Sheridan tacked on three more touchdowns in the second half.
Colson Coon accounted for 84 yards of total offense and had a TD run and TD catch. Carl Askins threw for 105 yards and three scores, while Rich Hall added a TD pass, and Nahir Aguirre contributed a TD run. The Broncs also got a 45-yard interception return for a touchdown by Cody Dunham.
For the Plainsmen, QB Ethan Jenkins completed 60 percent of his passes, as he was 15-for-25 for 98 yards but three interceptions. Cooper Gray had five catches for 43 yards.
Coach Ronga said moving forward it’s up to him to correct the mistakes, like the turnovers, and do what he’s here to do.
“To rise this program, rally this program, and get these players going. To me, it’s 0-0, always day one, and we start with that. I think there just has to be more focus in practice and more time spent with our skill people in understanding the security of the ball is as paramount as it can be, and you saw tonight (Friday night) what happens when it isn’t.”
Laramie will try for their first win on Friday with their first road game. They head to Gillette to play 0-1 Campbell County. The Camels lost their opener 56-8 at No. 4 Rock Springs. The Plainsmen and Camels will start at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 3.