Raiders blanked by Lightning
Matayo Redbear of the Lacombe Bantam Raiders is hauled down by two Hunting Hills Lightning opponents at MEGlobal Athletic Park on Saturday afternoon. The Raiders lost 24-0 to the Lightning. (Ashli Barrett/Lacombe Globe)
The Lacombe Bantam Raiders’ undefeated record was snapped this weekend as they were blanked 24-0 by the Hunting Hills Lightning.
Looking for their fifth straight win on the Central Football League season, the team found itself plagued by the injury bug.
Down two starting players to begin with, the team lost five more during Saturday’s game, hampering their offence and ultimately, their ability to push back against the Lightning.
Raiders Head Coach Fred Knip said there wasn’t much the team could’ve done differently.
“We’re by far the most explosive team in the league,” he said. “The boys played extremely well, but when you don’t have all your horses, it’s tough to run the race.”
Through the first four games of the season, the Raiders averaged around 50 points per game. The offence was led by Tanner Park, Cody Melnychuk and quarterback Zane Lardner, but they had been taken out before the end of Saturday’s game.
At the half, the Raiders were down 8-0. While they kept the game close throughout the second half, tired legs and a lack of manpower eventually caught up with them and the Lightning slipped past them into the end zone a couple more times before game’s end.
While Knip said he hated losing, he stressed the loss was just one game. Aside from the team getting healthy again, there’s not any adjustments he needs to make other than managing personnel to fill the holes created by injuries.
“We still have enough fire that we’re going to be able to move forward and make playoffs,” he said.
“It’s a matter of discipline and perseverance. If we can be disciplined and persevere, we’ll come out on top.”
Around the league, Springbank dumped Innisfail 28-7 on Friday, Drumheller shutout Lindsay Thurber 44-0, Stettler took out the Strathmore Badgers 52-12,
The Raiders next game will be on Saturday, Oct. 10 against Notre Dame. Kick-off is 1 p.m. at MEGlobal Athletic Park.