Bulldogs crush Shoshoni as Mountain View looms large

In a total turnaround from the previous week, the offense scored eight touchdowns while the defense pitched a shutout as the Lovell Bulldogs crushed the outmanned Shoshoni Wranglers 57-0 in Shoshoni Friday night.

New Lovell head coach Jeny Gardner picked up her first win and credited a complete team effort for the victory.

Gardner said sophomore CJ Lindsay scored four rushing touchdowns, and senior receiver Kaleb Snyder caught a pair of touchdown passes from quarterback Mat Savage. Thomas Hinckley and Hunter Harris scored one rushing touchdown each, and Harris also produced a safety when he tackled a Wrangler back in the end zone as an outside linebacker.

Meanwhile, the Lovell defense totally shut down the Shoshoni offense, Gardner said.

“The whole defense was swarming; they (Shoshoni) couldn’t do anything,” Gardner said.

The coach added that free safeties Jacob Grant and Thomas Hinckley each had an interception in the game.

“Shoshoni has seven on the line with two wings and two in the backfield. They try to power the ball. Our D line just took on all of those blockers, and our backers did a good job sniffing out the ball carrier,”

Lovell senior receiver Kaleb Snyder breaks loose after catching a pass from quarterback Mat Savage during the Bulldogs’ 57-0 win over the Shoshoni Wranglers Friday in Shoshoni.
Randy Tucker, Riverton Ranger

Gardner said, noting the performances of tackles Kurt McNabb, Quinn Lindsay and Daniel Luna, ends Kelly and Kerry Powell and Jack Steed, linebackers Harris and Tyler Nichols and strong safety Kaleb Snyder against the Wrangler running game.  She also said cornerback Quinton Hecker “stepped up” in the game.

Gardner said the Bulldogs set the tone early when they stuffed the opening Shoshoni drive, then scored in one play, a 26-yard run by Hinckley. She said the Bulldogs dominated field position, noting, “They really couldn’t do anything to us defensively or offensively.

The only negative aspect of the game was losing four fumbles, three of them in the first half, Gardner said.

We’ve got to work on protecting the ball,” she said. “That will be an emphasis this week.”

Lovell went on to lead 21-0 at halftime on touchdown passes of 47 and 18 yards to Snyder and the safety created by Harris, then scored 36 points in the second half including runs of six, 30, eight and four yards by CJ Lindsay.

The Bulldogs put the game away in the third quarter with 23 points, leading to a running clock for all of the fourth quarter, when Lovell put 13 more points on the board. Every member of the traveling team played in the game, Gardner said.

“Even though it was a blowout, it was a really good game for the team to come together,” she said. “That message is starting to come through.”

Gardner said the Bulldogs actually passed more than they ran the ball in the game to take advantage of Shoshoni’s defensive scheme to “load the box” and she added, “It was a great opportunity to work on our passing game. We saw a lot of improvement in that.”

She said the lopsided score also provided an opportunity for backup quarterback Tyler Nichols to get some reps in behind center. Nichols scored in the third quarter on an 18-yard run.

Lindsay finished with 110 yards rushing on 10 carries, Hinckley 69 yards on eight attempts. Savage got loose for 26 yards on one carry. Snyder caught three passes for 71 yards.

Mountain View Friday

The Bulldogs will face their toughest test of the season so far this week when they host the defending state champion Buffaloes Friday at 7 p.m. Mountain View is 1-1 this season after a 20-13 loss to Cokeville and a 35-6 conference won over Big Piney.

Gardner said Mountain View is a tough, disciplined football team.

“Watching film, they play consistent, whistle-to-whistle football,” she said. “At any given time all 11 players are engaged on the play. You have to work to find someone taking a play off. They just go every play.”

Mountain View will spread the field with triple receivers but will both run and pass out of that formation, Gardner said, adding that Kimball Madsen (#19) has excellent speed.

“The key is our DBs (defensive backs),” Gardner said. “They’ll have to have their coverage, and the entire defense has to do their job. They can’t play outside themselves. You have to take care of your area (of responsiblilty) and trust the next person to take care of theirs.”

The Buffaloes will employ a 4-4 defense, the coach said, noting, “Their defensive line is very disciplined. Our offensive line is going to have to work to dig them out of the trenches. We can’t have mistakes, and we have to believe.”

By David Peck