Cache can’t find avenues of victory
CACHE - Facing a 3rd and 18 at its own 12 yard line while holding a 6-0 lead early in the third quarter, Blanchard's outlook against Cache was bleak.
The Lions hadn't made a play since early the first quarter and this was just the situation Cache needed to get back in the game.
Blanchard quarterback Cameron Cooper tossed a swing pass in the left flat for Jamie Nance, who caught the ball, made a few Bulldogs missed and raced for a 31-yard gain. On the next play, Bryce Madron burst through the middle for essentially an untouched 52-yard touchdown run.
That series seemed to take all of Cache's wind and spurred Blanchard to a 27-8 win at Ulrich Stadium.
"Sometimes when you feel like you've got somebody pinned, and they have a good play on you, there's a letdown mentally," Cache head coach Farron Griffin said. "You cannot allow that to happen."
The Bulldogs (1-1) had played very good defense before Nance's 31-yard catch-and-run, except for one play. Blanchard amassed just 130 yards in the first half, 92 of which came on a touchdown pass from Cooper to Nance, coincidentally also on third down.
Once Blanchard (1-0) had its 13-0 lead following Madron's touchdown, it was content to just burn the clock. Cache's defense already tired from its offense not being able to sustain drives finally broke when with 18 seconds left in the third, Cooper took a QB sweep to the right sideline, cut all the way back to the left sideline and scampered 47 yards for a touchdown.
"We didn't execute very well offensively, and when you put you defense in that kind of shape, good teams like Blanchard are going to take advantage of that and score," Griffin said.
Perhaps the most disparaging part was Cache had its chances. On the second play of the game, Payton Hunt intercepted Cooper, and it looked like the junior had set his team up at Blanchard's 15. Instead a penalty during the return pushed the Bulldogs back to the 25. That drive ended with Blanchard getting a hand on a Nathan Angiel field goal attempt after three offensive plays.