Tigers offense struggles against physical Mankato West

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 1, 2006

MANKATO

&045; Defensively, the Albert Lea football team stymied a potent Mankato West team, but the Tiger offense could not find the answers in a 20-6 loss.

West quarterback Dan Dobson was limited to 163 yards through the air as the Tiger defense had him on the run most of the game collecting four sacks including two by Louie Grossman.

&8220;We only had one sack coming into this game and if you would have told me that we would hold West to 20 points I would take it,&8221; Albert Lea head coach Clay Anderson said. &8220;We had their quarterback on the run and he is not as accurate when that happens.&8221;

The defense also recorded an interception and a blocked punt on the night.

The Scarlets struck first with a touchdown through the air in the first quarter and one more on the ground in the second to go into halftime with a 13-0 lead.

A 12-yard touchdown strike for West was the only scoring in the third quarter.

The Tigers would get on the board late in the fourth when quarterback Corey Dieser found Matt Morris on a 22-yard scoring strike.

Despite the late touchdown the Tigers struggled moving the ball against a physical Scarlet defense being limited to just 143 yards of total offense.

Dieser finished the game completing 5 of 15 passes for 72 yards and Morris led the Albert Lea rushers with 33 yards on 16 carries.

&8220;We were a little flat offensively and that is something we are going to work on before the next game,&8221; Anderson said.

The Tigers finished the game with just 71 yards on the ground.

Albert Lea will look to pick up its first win of the season Friday when it hosts another Big Nine school looking to break into the win column in Winona for homecoming.

The Tigers have owned this matchup of late, but Anderson knows his team will be facing one of the better Winhawk squads in recent years.

&8220;They have good skill players and on defense they fly to the ball,&8221; he said.

Anderson knows that this is a winnable game for his team, but the key will be to prepare properly during the week.

&8220;Overconfidence can be a concern, but when you are 0-5 you should never think you are going to automatically beat someone,&8221; he said. &8220;Hopefully, homecoming will help us.&8221;

The game will kickoff at 7 p.m. at Hammer Field.