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MAHOMET — A swarm of Tornadoes (#20: Clark Rahar, #34: Kade Beckmier, #5: Cash Foraker, #2: Jake McConnell, #33: Liam Piatt) greet the Mahomet-Seymour RB during the first quarter on Friday, Sept. 22. Tried as they might, the defense played damage control all night as Taylorville dropped the Apollo Conference match, 42-0.
Lucas Domonousky / Breeze-Courier Photo
Breeze-Courier Sports Editor
MAHOMET — Friday, Sept. 22 marked the second straight week the Taylorville varsity football team was put to the Apollo Conference test as the Purple and Golf took on the Orange and Blue of Mahomet-Seymour. All three levels had trouble containing the Bulldogs, who assumed home field advantage, and scored a total of six touchdowns through four quarter. Tornadoes took the loss, 42-0.
“We put together an effort tonight.” Head Coach Jeb Odam said. “We made them uncomfortable at times. They scored on some big plays and had some athletes who got behind us a little bit. Defensively, they created a lot of confusion up front for our guys. So we made them uncomfortable at times but the moral victory just isn’t enough right now.”
Offensively, the Tornadoes were spread thin. Senior RB Thomas Gettings may have had the volume but could never find the bursts he and the offensive line have seen this season. Junior QB Baron Odam attempted to slow the game down but was force to make quick, timely decisions and never seemed to be on the same page as his core of pass catchers including senior Jake McConnell and juniors Clark Durbin, Owen Younker and Cash Foraker.
“We’ve got to find a way to get our guys in the right spot and that starts with me.” Odam continues. “We’ve kind of stalled out on the offensive side of things so I’ve got to go back to the drawing board, with my guys, and figure it out.”
Junior LB Kade Beckmier was a positive piece for the Tornadoes team on Friday. He had two take aways, interception in the first quarter and a fumble recovery in the third, and collected a handful of tackles.
“He did a great job.” Coach Odam compliments. “He’s playing a spot in our defense that is very very difficult. We’ve got him out in space, he’s got to be super physical, he’s got to be smart, he’s got to stick his nose in the run game and it was nice for him to have a game like this.”
Beckmier did not share the same enthusiasm for his performance. For him, he was focused on the bigger picture.
“I gave it everything I had but I made some mistakes too. Along with the rest of the team.” Said the obviously emotional linebacker. “But I couldn’t have done what we managed to pull off without the rest of the team either. We held them off the best we could. We played hard but there’s always more we could do. I can always play harder, the team can always play harder, we can always give more effort.”
Moving forward, it’s simple what Beckmier and the Tornadoes need to do to ensure they give themselves a better opportunity to win the football game.
“Pay more attention to detail.” Kade explains. “We need to help each other out, communicate and try to correct mistakes when we see them. We’ve got enough want to and we don’t give up. So, we’re definitely going to pull out a few more wins.”
Even after two straight losses confidence is still coursing through the guys’ veins. Taylorville (3-2) will head to Effingham next Friday, Sept. 29 for another shot at a conference victory.
Coach Odam understands the situation and is looking ahead for a way to get the team back on the right track.
“We’re not putting a product on the field, right now, that’s giving them (Taylorville fans) a lot to cheer for. We’ve got to find a way to turn that around. We’ve still have a path to the playoffs. We still have games in front of us. Got to get to five wins. There are teams we can play well against and get a victory on. All is not lost. We just aren’t playing well right now but we’ve got time to get it turned around.”