The Lebanon Warriors defeated the Willamette Wolverines 50-34 on Oct. 6.
The Warriors dominated the Willamette Wolverines in the second half. Lebanon moved the ball through the ground with their signature diamond offense package, sprinkling in a few short passes, while the Wolverines stuck to an aggressive air offense.
The first half was another story as two big plays from Willamette left the Wolverines with a one score lead heading into the locker room at halftime. The Warriors ground attack left much to be desired in the first half.
"The first half we came out, I thought we were a little edgy," said Colton Shepard, Lebanon starting quarterback. "Trying to do thing to fast. The second half we slowed down, and just played our game."
Shepard said by letting plays develop they were able to better execute in the second half.
"All season we've been a second half team," Shepard said. "That needs to change, but we come out of the locker room in that second half and we're a lot more pumped."
Willamette struck first methodically moving down field with a mix of runs and passes to score as they missed the extra point attempt.
The Warriors responded on their first drive as well and had no trouble converting for two on the point after try, another score for the Warriors put the game up 15-6, which Lebanon held until the two big plays from Willamette.
From the five yard line, a long bomb from Willamette's Elijah Peterson to a wide open man on right side of the field went for a score. With not much time left on the clock, Willamette attempted a double reverse pattern, which also went for another touchdown.
"What I'm frustrated with is we knew what that is what their game was, but I'm super proud of our kids for coming back in the second half, and kind of dominating up front and doing what we do," head coach Ty Tomlin said. "We knew we were going to get tested in the secondary. We knew they were going to throw the crud out of the ball."
Tomlin said the secondary completely broke down at times, but that secondary defense also made some great plays as the safeties broke up, and nearly intercepted several Willamette passes.
"We're going to look at those and say "great job here, and and here's the stuff we need to fix," Tomlin said. "We'll just keep grinding away at it."
The Warriors dominated in the second half scoring at will and were able to contain the Wolverines air offensive more than they were in the first.
Tomlin said he was proud to see the second half performance, but was critical of the secondary coverage breakdowns in the first.
Lebanon (1-2, 4-2) returns to MWC action at Central on Oct. 12.