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Breaking Down the L-S Football Team's Victory

Three topics, three observations each on the Warriors' season opener against Tewksbury.

Saturday's 28-0 win for the Lincoln-Sudbury football team had big plays in all three phases of the game from the visitors. For Tewksbury ... well, their performance left something to be desired. Here's the first 3-by-3 of the 2011 season.

Three stats

1. An 8-yard run on the first play from scrimmage was the only play of positive yardage for the Tewksbury offense in the first quarter, part of a streak of nine such plays in the first half. The Redmen didn't notch a first down until their only drive of the third quarter.

2. The Warriors' opening drive of the second half had the mentality of a team hanging on to a lead at the end of a game rather than halfway through. The drive took up the first 6:50 of the third quarter and ended on a Kevin Saunders interception.

3. John Harris had the best of times and the worst of times in the first half. He hauled in two fourth-down passes on the Warriors' first scoring drive, then bobbled the next ball thrown his way for what could have been an easy score. That was the first in a run of four straight incompletions in his direction before he snagged another big one (albeit this time on third down) toward the end of the half to set up the next L-S score.

Three moments

1. The crowd cringed and cheered during Will Twyman's extra-point attempts in the second half as they both landed in the front yard of a house right across the street from Doucette Field, and both almost knocked out a telephone line in front of said house.

2. At the end of pregame warmups, Matt Cahill was on the bench, getting his right knee iced and taped. It definitely was a factor in his play, as he only completed 50 percent of his passes and was unable to show his scrambling ability that netted him 400 rushing yards last season.

3. Junior defensive back Malik Layne put a bow on the win with a pick-six from about 25 yards out with 1:19 left, eliciting perhaps the biggest reaction of the day from not only the L-S fans, but the bench, the coaches, and especially his family.

Three takeaways

1. On passing plays, Matt Cahill really has to kick the habit of locking on to one receiver right from the snap. Sometimes the opposing team won't make you pay for it, and sometimes your defense will get the ball back in a heartbeat, but you can't count on either of those things happening every time.

2. Pressure was the difference in this game for the L-S defense. Tewksbury took advantage of the few one-on-one opportunities they had, but double-teams and blitzes by the Warriors killed whatever chance the Redmen had of making a game of it. You never want to get burned while playing that kind of defense, but it could be key to L-S's success this year.

3. If ever a 28-0 win could be not pretty, this was it. The Warriors could have easily scored at least 42 points were it not for several costly penalties, which could be directly attributed to a lack of score on two drives. Discipline will be a point of emphasis going into next week's game at Malden Catholic.

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