WARRENTON Big plays, a quick strike offense and a solid defense. Yes, the Seaside Gulls are building a new reputation for themselves, and it's a nice one to have.
The Gulls scored seven touchdowns in Friday's 46-0 win at Warrenton and every single score was from 35 yards or more.
Seaside racked up 14 first downs, rolled up 420 yards in total offense (335 on the ground), had two running backs gain over 100 yards each and a junior quarterback who continues to make big strides.
Defensively, they held Warrenton to just 147 yards in offense and limited the Warriors to a little over two yards per carry, in addition to posting their second straight season-opening shutout over Warrenton.
Seaside also had 12 penalties for 90 yards, just so they'll have something to work on this week.
All in all, not bad for openers, said Seaside coach Jeff Roberts.
Game speed is so tough to replicate in practice, he said. But I was proud of our kids' effort tonight, and hanging in there. We have a couple new wrinkles that we showed off tonight that should make us a little more dangerous.
Still, the Gulls' Iron Horse is junior running back Calvin Pollard, possibly the best back in the Cowapa League this year.
On his first carry of the night, Pollard was stuck in the backfield for a two-yard loss. On his next carry, he was stopped for no gain.
But two plays later, on his third run of the night, he outran the Warrenton defense 51 yards for a touchdown.
His fifth carry covered 69 yards for a score, and Pollard capped the first half with a 35-yard scoring jaunt, his last run of the night. He finished with 163 yards all on his final seven carries, and all in the first half.
Handing the ball to Pollard has been pretty effective for the last couple years, so if it's not broken, don't fix it, Roberts said. But we threw the ball a little bit more than we're used to, and I think that will serve us as well. If we can throw the ball effectively, it will take some pressure off Calvin.
Seaside quarterback Kevin LaCoste completed 4-of-8 passes for 85 yards.
In between Pollard's second and third scores, the Gulls turned to their other playmaker, Andrew Owens.
The 5-foot-7 senior back ran 54 yards for a touchdown late in the first quarter, caught a 39-yard scoring toss from LaCoste, and returned a punt 84 yards for a touchdown, giving Seaside a 32-0 lead with 2:50 left in the first half.
Owens scored his and Seaside's final touchdown of the night early in the third quarter, running 44 yards for the score. The average distance of a Seaside touchdown Friday covered just over 53 yards.
Meanwhile, the Warriors were putting themselves in good position on third down plays they just couldn't convert, finishing with just eight first downs.
One year and home field advantage didn't make much of a difference for the Warriors, who opened the 2012 season with a 50-0 loss at Seaside.
Still, the Warrenton kids came out and played hard, Roberts said. We didn't execute to where we wanted to, so the opportunity will present itself in practice this week to clean some things up. We'll look at the film, then start plugging away at what we need to do.
Warrenton quarterback Brock Johnson completed 6-of-13 passes for 80 yards, with five completions to Bradd Lundberg.
Defensively, I thought we played pretty solid, Roberts said. Justin Ruiz and Aaron Tadei were both tough tonight. They came up and hit.
And Andrew Owens (four carries for 112 yards, two receptions for 53 yards) what a night he had. He rushed for two touchdowns, caught one and scored one on special teams. He had a great night.
The Gulls host Taft Friday, while the Warriors travel to Vernonia.