When Cambridge travels to Woodstock on Friday, one team will leave with its first win of the season, while the other will continue to search for answers.
After two losses to open the season, Woodstock coach Brent Budde said the Wolverines aren’t far off from changing their Friday night fortunes.
“Our main job right now is to play a complete game,” Budde said. “Our problem is not staying focused for 48 minutes. We’ll stay focused for about 43 minutes right now, but a surprise onside kick or missed assignment here or there have cost us the last two weeks.”
Simple assignment football is what Budde is preaching to his team as they prepare to take on Cambridge (0-1), a team which the Wolverines defeated last year in the first meeting between the two schools.
“Really, it's just worrying about us,” Budde said. “Things like knowing the down and distance. We gave up a third-and-18 the other day on a simple wheel route. We can’t do stuff like that, or turn the ball over three times, and expect to win.”
Woodstock fell 36-20 last week to Creekview. Budde said the Wolverines' offense struggled to stay on the field in the first half, which left the Woodstock defense in a vulnerable position against the Creekview offense.
Connecting on more passes, and subsequently keeping more drives alive, is something Budde said he is looking for out of the Wolverines’ quarterback duo of junior Walker Ormsby and sophomore Robbie Roper.
Both against Creekview and against North Cobb in Week 1, Woodstock suffered costly interceptions just before halftime, which left potential points off the board. Woodstock continues to rotate the quarterbacks and will likely do the same this week.
“Our completion percentage isn’t where it needs to be right now,” Budde said. “We’re just looking for one of those guys to take the reins. The first guy who does that will probably take the majority of the reps, if not all of them. They’re not far away, and I honestly have faith that both have the ability to step up into that role.”
With the passing game still forming, the Woodstock running game has stepped in to fill the void. Junior running back V’ontae Hampton has emerged as the No. 1 threat out of the backfield for Woodstock and leads the county in rushing through two games with 179 yards and two touchdowns.
With several new starters on the offensive linem Budde said the success on the ground early this season has been a pleasant surprise.
Budde said Cambridge will run a 3-3-5 base defense with one high safety and will likely blitz multiple linebackers on most plays. Woodstock saw three-man defensive line fronts against both North Cobb and Creekview, but whether Cambridge sits back to defend the pass or continues to bring pressure remains to be seen.
“V’ontae Hampton and the offensive line have really been a pleasant surprise for us so, hopefully, that opens up the passing game,” Budde said. “Cambridge will blitz two of the three 'backers, basically sending five most of the times, and our offensive line will need to be ready for that.”