LOS ANGELES PROVIDES OMAHA WITH REALITY CHECK, 79-6
The 2017 Los Angeles Temptation were going to be different, for better and worse. Better because the game’s best Quarterback Ashley Salerno returns from suspension, and worse, because of the retirement of Hall of Fame middle linebacker, Monique Gaxiola. On this night, it was very much for the better, as Meghan Hanson, the heir-apparent to Gaxiola dominated at the middle linebacker position en route to Game MVP honors. Even better if you’re a Temptation fan, LA did not really need the services of Salerno. It was the F-150, Carmen Bourseau who tore through the Heart defense with a league-record, 7 touchdowns in a single-game.
For Omaha, the play of Quarterback Alex Drake continues to be lackluster, whats worse, the play-calling is as boring and predictable as a phone book. Head coach and offensive coordinator Dontae Allen has not prepared this offense for success, simply because there is no balance. The Heart called 32 rushes vs 17 passes, the passes only coming late when Omaha was in rally-mode. With star running back Nikki Bernhardt missing from the line-up vs an already fierce Los Angeles defense, Omaha had little chance at success offensively.
The first half was completely lopsided as Omaha’s average starting field position was its own 11 yard line while Los Angeles’ average field position was Omaha 17yd line. Despite a much improved Heart defense, with short-fields to defend, very few defenses can be successful. Bourseau proved to be too much for the wore-down Heart defense, racking up 3 touchdown runs of 9,17 and 3 yards. Salerno added one on the ground from 3 yards out and connected with a greatly improved No.1 receiver, Cynthia Schmidt, on an 18 yard touchdown pass. Just when you thought things could not get worse for Omaha, Drake threw a pick 6 to Hanson right before the half.
Omaha began to wave the white flag in the 2nd half, as Quarterback Drake was pulled from the game with a concussion and multiple other players going down, including Center Sara Robinson with a broken arm. Back Quarterback Lindsey Howell proved why she is a back-up, often confused and overwhelmed by the moment. Howell did manage to connect with Sara Jayne Thompson on a 40 yard touchdown, although most of the yards were due to Thompson’s effort after the catch.
The story of the 2nd half and game, was the play of Bourseau and Hanson, each led the way for the offense and defense, respectively. Hanson finishing with a career-high 7.5 solo tackles 1 sack and 1 interception. Bourseau blew all expectations as she totaled a staggering 7 touchdown runs and 77 yards on the ground.
Omaha next travels to Pittsburgh on June 10, a team they beat in Omaha 32-6. For Los Angeles, an early season test against the upstart Austin Acoustic on June 24.
Keys to Omaha improvement: Develop a more balanced offense. Get Drake healthy and return Nikki Bernhardt to the line-up.
Keys to Los Angeles’ improvement: Better play-calling for extra points. Too many dropped balls, work on hands, on both sides of the ball.
|Passing Yards (Net)||52||60|
|Total Offense Plays-Yards||48-82||31-241|