After a close loss to Ferris State, the Oiler football team looked to bounce back and win the home opener against Northwood. That’s exactly what they did with a final score of 31-21. Prior to the game, Head Coach Rob Keys was asked what the Ferris St. match taught them going into the home opener.
“The big thing with our team, regardless of the outcome, [is] we want to take something from it both positive and negative,” Keys said. “You want to figure out the things you need to do better the following week, and maybe improve upon some things you did well. Ultimately, I tell our guys, ‘Don’t let that game affect the next game. Win or lose.’”
In the Ferris St. game, Keys talked about how possessions were constantly being traded off. For the game against Northwood, Keys wanted to emphasize starting quick. And that’s exactly what the Oilers did, going up 31-7, early in the second quarter.
“A fast start is very important. Last week against Ferris St., we did that, drove right down the field and scored. Conversely, we gave up a touchdown on the very next series. So, we need to do a good job marrying the offense and defense,” said Keys.
While the offense provided the firepower for the Oilers, headlined by RB, Brian Benson, and QB, Matt Winzeler, it was the defense who came up when it mattered the most. Two sacks by Grant Kinsinger and David Marbury, late in the fourth quarter all but sealed the victory for the Oilers.
“The two sacks late were really big for the defense because we hadn’t gotten any up to that point in the season. I think that we proved to ourselves that we can make plays and we’ll be able to play better with that trust in ourselves,” said Junior Defensive Lineman, Logan Speyer.
While Keys and the Oilers take it game-by-game, he was excited to be back home at Donnell Stadium for the home opener.
“It’s exciting because it’s the first time that a lot of the fans and a lot of the families get to see us live. We’regonna put a good product on the field and I know that Saturday night under the lights, everybody’s excited playing that first game [at home],” said Keys.
But Keys was more excited about getting the first win this season.
“Regardless of home or away, getting that first win. Coming up short last week, everybody is ready to get that first win,” said Keys.
With the first win under their belt, the Oilers look to keep the momentum going when they hit the road and play at Walsh, Sat. at 1 p.m.