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  • Val T.

Week 3 preview: Valley’s home opener against improved Twin Lakes


Sports Editor, RTC

Twin Lakes (2-0) at Tippecanoe Valley (2-0), 7 p.m.

“Now we go.”

When Rochester’s Alex Deming ran 43 yards for a touchdown on their first drive of the game and Valley fell behind 8-0 in last week’s Bell game, Valley coach Stephen Moriarty described the sideline mood as one of determination and not panic.

Valley responded by scoring 39 unanswered points and winning 39-8 to take their fifth straight Bell.

“I think it was more out of frustration and like, ‘Hey, let’s get this,’” Moriarty said. “Almost like a wake-up call sort of thing. Because we thought we had them tied up there for awhile, and then all of a sudden, he breaks loose. So I was glad to see them turn around and keep focused and use that as motivation to kick it in gear.”

While Valley shut down a Rochester team that had scored 56 points in its previous game against Wabash, they will now try and stop a Twin Lakes teams that has already won more games this season under first-year coach Kevin O’Shea than they did all of last year.

O’Shea won five state championships during his days as the Lafayette Central Catholic coach, including four in a row from 2009-12. His teams are typically known for their strong defenses and passing-focused offenses.

Meanwhile, Valley amassed 498 yards of offense against Rochester. Nate Parker and Wade Jones combined to score five touchdowns, and Cody Eastgate threw a career-high four touchdown passes.

“I think they do a good job of mixing up their fronts and their coverages,” Moriarty said of the Twin Lakes defense. “You’re not sure where you’re going to get pressure. They like to keep you guessing.”

Twin Lakes has a sophomore quarterback in Ethan Need, a sophomore leading rusher in Colton Robertson and three freshmen receiving targets in Mason Brummett, Tate Goyer and Keaton Miller. Robertson will also go out into the pattern.

As a result, Valley’s secondary figures to be busier.

“He’s throwing the ball quite a bit,” Moriarty said. “He’s over just 47 percent of the time, they throw the ball, which is high in high school football. He does like to sling it, and it’s more of a run-and-shoot offense. … Their run plays are more like the zone reads and wham. It’s very traditional as to what he’s run in the past at McCutcheon and CC (Central Catholic).”

This is the first ever meeting between Twin Lakes and Valley in football. It’s also the first game of a four-game homestand for the Vikings. Tipton, Culver Academy and Jimtown will follow into Smith-Bibler Memorial Stadium Home of Death Valley Football.

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