Hungry for a win: Jimmies, ‘Rockers seek first victoryJamestown College and South Dakota Mines need a win more than anything right now. One of them will get its first of the season today.
By: Dave Selvig, The Jamestown Sun, The Jamestown Sun
Jamestown College and South Dakota Mines need a win more than anything right now. One of them will get its first of the season today.
The Jimmies (0-3) are looking to bounce back after a poor performance last Saturday, which ended in a 31-0 loss to Wisconsin-Stout, although they trailed just 10-0 midway through the third quarter.
The Hardrockers’ first two games resulted in big paydays, but also huge losses as they’ve been routed by FCS’s UND and Colorado Mines — a ranked NCAA Division II school — by the combined scores of 137-7. Today will be the first time this season they have a chance of winning.
“They want to win as badly as we do,” JC coach Shawn Frank said. “Our kids have resolve, but they hurt when we lose. We want to win for each other, for our fans, for Jamestown College. So anytime you’re not winning you carry it with you.
“All you can do is keep grinding and prepare as best you can for the next game.”
There wasn’t a whole lot to take out of the Stout game. The JC defense performed OK considering the offense sputtered from start to finish.
“Anytime you’re on the road against a quality team, you have to play four complete quarters in all three phases of the game and we did not do that,” Frank said. “With 7 minutes left we’re only down 10-0, then the proverbial wheels came off the bus.”
But they’re back home today and hoping to right the ship.
“When we signed on for the job we knew it’s wasn’t going to be a quick fix,” Frank said. “The nice thing is we have an opportunity to play in front of our home crowd and we’re looking forward to it.”
The Jimmies defeated the Hardrockers 23-20 in overtime to start the 2011 season in Rapid City, S.D. Mines has undergone major changes since then. Stacy Phillips is the new head coach. They also have a new offensive scheme, running exclusively the pistol offense where the quarterback lines up in shotgun with a running back behind him. It will be the fourth different offensive scheme the JC ‘D’ has seen this season. “It’s something new every week,” Frank said.
The Jimmies have not been able to run the ball effectively enough so far. It’s somewhat surprising considering two of their top returning players are senior running backs Matt Mithaugen and Lance Johansen. Both are averaging less than 4 yards per carry. “We have to be able to run the ball more effectively. It’s not just one or two guys, collectively we have to do better as an offensive unit,” Frank said. Being unable to run has put the Jimmies behind the chains too often. “Second- and third-and-long is not a recipe for success,” Frank said.
Mines is in its third and final year of its transition from the NAIA to NCAA Division II, but they have no conference home and are technically an independent. … One bright spot for Mines has been its pass rush. They have seven sacks and allowed six. The Jimmies have allowed 13 sacks in three games. … Pat Shaw has 3 sacks in 2 games for Mines. … Matt Wilson has emerged as the Jimmies’ top target. Wilson, a senior, has 16 catches for 230 yards. No other receiver has more than 7 grabs. … Three of the top 4 tacklers for the Jimmies are defefnsive backs. Safeties J.T. Petsch (35) and C.J. Costello (24) are 1-2. Cornerback A.J. Downs is fourth (15). Senior D-lineman Andrew Hammond has 16 stops. Garrett Tenney and Jarelle Miller each have 2 sacks.
Sun sports editor Dave Selvig can be reached at (701) 952-8460 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org