Lions trampled by Lopers in Kearney

The Lions hope to bounce back this week after a tough loss from Nebraska Kearney last week losing 45-0 in the season opener. 

“There is a much better football team in that locker room than what showed up in Kearney on Thursday night,” said head coach Denver Johnson. “We’ve got to correct a lot of our mistakes, a lot of them were our own doings, not necessarily our opponents, and if we can correct a lot of those things, hopefully we will be a much improved team Saturday night.”

The Lions struggled to stop the Lopers offense all night with the Lopers having 474 yards rushing, 98 of those came off of a run from junior, Darrius Webb. Webb ended up having 163 yards on eight carries. The Lopers junior quarterback, Alex McGinnis, had 12 completions on 17 attempts for 111 yards and a touchdown. 

“I’m more upset with our offensive performance I think, than I am with our defensive performance,” said Johnson. “We have to support our defense by getting some points on the board.”

The Lions’ new quarterback Sean Kelly had a passer rating of 87.9 with 23 completions out of 49 attempts for 176 yards, but was sacked three times. The Lions lost two fumbles to the Lopers one from sophomore running back, Caleb Batie, and the other from, junior wide receiver, Carson Day.  The Lions had 70 yards rushing with Batie leading the way with 65 yards on 18 attempts.  The Lions altogether had 246 yards compared to the Lopers 585 yards. 

“What coach tells us every day, you can’t just mess around in practice, you can’t just go into a game and expect to win, you might be able to do that in some leagues, but in this league if you do that you end up getting beat bad real quick,” said sophomore running back Caleb Batie.

Injury Report

Roc Robbins will most likely be returning to the field for the home opener tomorrow night. Coach Johnson said things were looking positive for him returning to tomorrow nights game. Mark Mudd, a sophomore linebacker sprained his MCL in the season opener, and is expected to miss up to three weeks. Veteran receiver Carson Day hurt his ankle during the season opener as well, and he is not expected to play tomorrow night. Sophomore running back Shemar Coleman did not play in the season opener but if he is healthy and feeling right he could be back in the lineup tomorrow night and be a big part of a three-headed monster in the back field with Dalton Jones and Batie. 

Up Next

The Lions come home to face Lindenwood tomorrow, who also lost their first game of the season to Washburn 27-14. Lindenwood’s top performers last week include freshman quarterback, Cade Brister who had 146 passing yards with a touchdown and also ran for 60 yards for a touchdown. Senior running back, Cameron Sanders, had 139 all purpose yards, 106 of them being on kick return. Senior linebacker, CJ Bivens, had 12 total tackles, eight of them were solo, and he picked up half a sack. The past two seasons the Lions have lost to Lindenwood. Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m. at Fred G. Hughes Stadium.

“Getting a win would be huge for this program, cause its been a long time since getting a W,” said junior defensive back Paul Williams.