By Lukas Eggen Ely Times Staff Writer

From the opening kick off, the White Pine High football team struggled, falling to Milford 50-16 last Friday night. From failing to put together drives to forcing third downs for Milford’s offense, only to see them gain a first down, the Bobcats had trouble finding its footing during its season-opener and fell behind 42-0 at halftime.

“Our youth and inexperience showed,” coach James Williams said. “All of the mistakes we made out there were mental mistakes.”

From an offensive line featuring more than half appearing in their first football game to quarterback Mike Williams playing his first game at that position for the Bobcats to mistakes on the offensive, defensive and special teams units, White Pine fell behind quickly and didn’t score until the fourth quarter.

“We were overcompensating and trying to do everything,” Williams said. “They were trying to do things they shouldn’t be doing and we got beat because we had people trying to do too much.”

With a young team, White Pine’s opening game could serve as a wake up call to many of the players of what to expect going forward into league play. Now, it’ll be up to players and coaches to take that into their practices.

“Now they have the idea of what game tempo and game speed is like and when it comes to practice, they’ll be practicing at that temp and practicing like they want to play,” Williams said.

The Bobcats host Battle Mountain at (4 p.m. JV, 7 p.m. varsity) on Sept. 6. Battle Mountain dropped its opening game to Lowry 56-7 and is in the middle of a four-game road trip to star its season. Williams said he’s looking for his team to learn from last week and eliminate the mental errors.

“From us, I hope we get that mental focus,” Williams said. “For the most part, our guys couldn’t tell the left from their right after the opening kickoff. We were shell-shocked. Now they have a taste in their mouth and saw what it’s like. (Against Battle Mountain) I’m hoping we’re settled because physically we can match up pretty well. We were so afraid of making mistakes we didn’t make the plays we had the opportunity to.”

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